By planning well, you can hope to enjoy a mostly hassle-free trip with only good surprises. Students, Faculty and Staff can use this site to plan their travel, as well as individuals planning group travel.
All Georgetown students, faculty, and staff engaged in university-related travel overseas must comply with GU's International Travel Policy. All faculty, staff and students must also comply with the University's Infectious Disease Travel Policy.
To help you learn as much as you can about your destination(s), take advantage of the numerous university resources available. Lauinger Library has a variety of informational resources, including country guides and international news databases. Before departure, all travelers should consult U.S. Department of State Country Fact Sheets and International SOS country guides on their destination, as these documents contain important information on issues such as medical care and US Embassy services. Non-US citizens should consult their equivalent agencies.
Some additional things to consider when planning international travel are passports/visas, vaccinations, and health insurance.
Travel Checklist: Pre-departure Suggestions
- Obtain passport and required visas. Due to potential processing delays, US passports should be applied for 4-6 months before departure, though in an emergency situation applications can be rushed at substantially higher costs. Many countries process visa applications in a matter of days, but for some countries it may take up to several weeks. Contact your destination country’s embassy or consulate for more information. A list of embassies located in Washington, DC is available here.
- Ensure your GOCard and other identification are current and unexpired. In an emergency, a current GOCard may be the only thing that links you to Georgetown. Expired GOCards can be renewed free of charge at the GOCard Office in Darnall Hall.
- Review recommendations for vaccinations and malaria prophylaxis. International SOS country guides include a list of recommended vaccines and suggestions for malaria prevention. Allow sufficient time (six weeks recommended) to make an appointment with a healthcare provider. The Student Health Center offers travel vaccinations for students. Faculty and staff can contact their healthcare provider or the Medical Center's travel medicine clinic.
- Ensure you will have an adequate supply of your medications. Order a supply of any prescription medications you will need while you are away, as well as a copy of any eyeglass prescriptions. International SOS country guides contain detailed information on the best way to minimize difficulties in bringing prescription drugs through customs.
- Ensure you have appropriate health insurance. Georgetown faculty or staff who obtain health benefits from the University can find information on the applicability of their benefits at the web site of the Office of Faculty and Staff Benefits. Students who use the University’s student health insurance plan can find further information at the Student Insurance web site.
- If planning to drive, ensure you have the appropriate permit. Some countries will allow drivers to use their American license for short-term visits, while others may require an International Driving Permit (IDP.) Information on the IDP is available through AAA.
- If you are renting a vehicle for University purposes, ensure that you are in compliance with the University's vehicle operation policies.
- Make and carry with you photocopies of important documents. It is particularly important to have copies of your airline reservation, trip itinerary, and the front page of your passport. Copies of credit cards and phone numbers of your financial institution are also important in the event that they are lost or stolen. In addition, photocopies of these documents should be given to a trusted emergency contact.
- Be sure Georgetown has your current emergency contact information. This is particularly important for those traveling on University business. Emergency contact information can be updated through MyAccess (students) or GMS (faculty and staff.)
- Print and carry with you a copy of the International SOS wallet card. This will enable you to easily contact SOS in the event of an emergency.
- Ensure you will be able to obtain cash at your destination. It is often easy to obtain cash in a foreign country through an ATM; however, some banks require account holders to register before their ATM card will function abroad. Consult with your bank regarding its particular requirements. Regardless of one’s individual situation, it is advisable to obtain a small amount of spending money in the destination country’s currency before departure.
- For US citizens, register travel with the local US embassy. Registration allows you to be easily located by embassy personnel in the event of an emergency and can be completed here.
- If you are not a US citizen or permanent resident, ensure your US visa paperwork is in order for return to the US. Check the conditions of your US visa to ensure your travel will not conflict with your visa requirements. It is advisable to bring extra evidence of your visa status in case you are challenged at Immigration upon return. Georgetown students, faculty, and staff should contact International Student and Scholar Services in the Office of Global Services with visa-related questions.