Register at UChicago Traveler
In addition to the items below, we recommend you register all travel through UChicago Traveler, a secure website that allows the University to assist students, faculty, and staff overseas, in emergencies or times of crisis.
- Traveling to High Risk Destinations
- Traveling with Technology
- State Department Registration
Review the items below to understand the regulations, requirements, and recommendations for staying healthy while traveling.
Countries have varying restrictions on the medications permitted to go through customs. Please follow the general guidelines below and research the specific restrictions for your destination.
Tips for Traveling with Medication:
- Research the guidelines for your destination and customs entry/exit points.
- Ask your doctor for an official letter explaining your medical treatment and required medications, translated into the host country’s language if needed.
- Pack enough medication to last the length of your trip and no more than personal-use quantities.
- Keep all medications in your carry-on luggage and in their original, labeled containers with your name; do not combine multiple medications into one container.
- Do not have banned or controlled substances mailed to you.
UChicago Medicine’s Travel Clinic provides complete travel care, ranging from consultation, immunizations, and preventative medicine to post-travel care in the event of an illness. Staff will also inform you of general health travel guidelines for your destination.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provide a detailed overview of health considerations and vaccination requirements for travel in various regions of the world.
While some levels of insurance are provided by registering through UChicago Traveler and the International SOS program, please review the information here to ensure that you have a full understanding of the insurance coverage you will need to confirm or acquire to cover your activities abroad.
While certain University insurance programs will extend to University activities abroad, ensuring adequate health insurance coverage is your responsibility. It is important to consult with your medical insurance provider prior to travel to ensure you understand the benefits provided by your insurance coverage overseas.
Some major health insurance carriers in the U.S. may provide coverage for emergencies that occur while you are traveling. However, most do not cover medical expenses due to exacerbations of pre-existing medical conditions while you are abroad. If you do not have medical insurance coverage abroad, consider obtaining short-term international travel health insurance prior to your trip.
Traveling to High-Risk Destinations
The State Department monitors conditions around the world and assigns each country a Travel Advisory with important security information. The Travel Advisory appears at the top of each country page, with a color corresponding to each level. In addition to the overall Travel Advisory, specific locations within a country may have additional advisories in effect.
The University of Chicago's working assumption is that travel to countries or regions with a US Department of State Level 3 or Level 4 Advisory is not permitted for undergraduate participants. There may be additional restricted countries or regions; consult with Risk Management at (773) 702-1951 as necessary.
Undergraduate students may petition for an exemption to this policy. The following items will be needed for the Study Abroad Risk and Security Assessment committee (SARSAC) to review requests for an exception:
- Travel advisory meeting with a Dean in the College. Please call (773) 834-3780 to schedule an appointment.
- A one- to two-page written petition detailing the proposed activity to be conducted in the desired country. The petition should address the risks of the locale and present a thoughtful plan to address adversity that might arise. Students are advised to include information about prior travel, language skills, local support resources (embassy, friends, family, etc.), and other experiences that will inform the proposed travel. The petition must also give a reasonable justification that the experience cannot be obtained in another country or region that does not bear a Level 3 or Level 4 Advisory.
- A Waiver, signed by the student and a parent or legal guardian.
Traveling with Technology
International Travel with electronic devices requires special precautions. Remote devices and the information they contain should be protected while accessing the Internet or not physically under your control. IT Services has developed travel tips within the U.S. and abroad with electronic devices such as smartphones, laptops, and tablets.
Travelers must also be aware of the technical data residing on these devices as traveling with such technical data could be a violation of U.S. Export Control regulations. Consult URA’s International Travel Memo describing the Export Control considerations for travelers. Any questions should be directed to Stefan Jellicoe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Register with the State Department
You are also encouraged to register your travel with the U.S. Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, which allows the U.S. Embassy contact you in an emergency (e.g., natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency) and help family and friends get in touch with you in an emergency.