Student International Travel Information

Want to talk to us?

Need to talk to someone about international student travel? Contact us at globalhub@umaryland.edu.

Are you wondering what international opportunities exist?

Check out CGE's Global Health Opportunities and Travel Awards page for funding opportunities, including application opening dates and deadlines. The page includes opportunities for students in all UMB schools. Note that while some opportunities involve travel, others are virtual opportunities.

Learn about Cultural Humility and Ethical Engagement as a Global Traveler

UMB values ethical engagement and mutually beneficial relationships with international partners. Cultural humility is a more useful concept than "cultural competence," which implies that someone can learn all there is to know about another culture. Cultural humility is lifelong learning that focuses on developing awareness of one’s own culture and critical self-reflection as a pathway to understanding other cultures.

  • Watch this TedTalk by Dr. Juliana Mosley, PhD - This is an invitation to learn why cultural humility is a more profound and impactful way to engage with other people and cultures.

  • Take the Ethical Challenges in Short-Term Global Health Training online course - This free course created by Johns Hopkins University consists of a series of 10 cases based on real scenarios to introduce trainees and others involved in global health research and service to ethical issues that may arise during short-term training experiences abroad.

  • Read an article by UMB professor Virginia Rowthorn on ethical challenges to be aware of in short-term global experiences: Not above the law: A legal and ethical analysis of short-term experiences in global healthAnnals of Global Health. 2019; 85(1).

Passports & Visas

Passports

  • Processing times for US passports are long - standard passport issuance is 10-12 weeks. Pay an additional $60 if you want to expedite your passport in 4-6 weeks. Plan ahead!

  • Ensure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months beyond the end date of your travel.

  • Information is available at US Department of State passport information.

  • You can find locations for submitting passport applications at the US Department of State’s Passport Acceptance Facility Search Page.

Visas

Every country has its own process, requirements, and fees for applying for a visa. Some countries may require you to travel to an in-person appointment at a consulate or embassy in select US cities. You can find current visa information by contacting the consulate or embassy of your destination country.

A consular office may deny your visa application, so it's best to adhere to their requirements and apply as early as possible. It is important that you know what is required of you before attempting to enter a country. Failing to obtain a visa could result in a denial of entry into a country and even criminal charges.

Health Care

Contact your health insurer to ensure you are covered while you are out of the country. In any case, contact International SOS if you have any health issues or concerns (however minor) when you are outside the United States. International SOS will give you advice, connect you to health care, and work with your insurer. See Safety & Security while Traveling for details.

In addition, check the CDC’s immunization requirements and recommendations for each country you are traveling to and through, then make an appointment to obtain those immunizations. We recommend using the UM School of Medicine Travel Medicine Practice, which is located on campus and is much more affordable than private travel clinics.

Be Prepared

Register your trip with your embassy before you leave. Many countries offer online registration including the United States via the Smart Travelers Enrollment Plan (STEP). If there is an emergency in the country, your embassy will be aware of your presence.

Make copies of your itinerary, passport, visas, travel insurance card, immunization proof, letter of invitation or agreement from destination site, contact information for each location, list of emergency contacts, driver’s license, and UMB ID, and keep them in a place other than the originals (e.g., originals in your daypack and copies in your suitcase in the residence or a safe, if available).

Ask your in-country host about appropriate dress and shoes for work and casual activities, so you bring the correct apparel.

For additional guidance, see the "Preparing to travel" FAQ under Travel Safety & Security and International SOS.

Be a Safe Traveler

Travel in groups or with a friend when leaving your residence or program site, if possible.

Contact your faculty or International SOS with any concerns during travel. It is appropriate to contact International SOS in any difficult situation or emergency, e.g., if you have any health issue, even if minor, if you are a victim of a crime of any sort, or if you find yourself in a threatening or dangerous situation.

Minimize your exposure to dangerous or compromising situations. Remember, you do not have the situational awareness in a new setting that you have at home. Something like an evening jog or flagging down a taxi on the street may not be safe in a new setting. Local hosts will be allies in determining safe behavior.

For more guidance, see Safety & Security while Traveling.

Communications, Cell Service, and Eduroam Abroad

Cell Phones

It is advisable to buy an international mobile phone plan for your international experience. It is the only way to have ready access to the International SOS app if you should need it. Another option is buying a local SIM card, so that you have a local number and can keep in easy contact. Be sure that your phone is unlocked and compatible. Once you arrive in country, you can purchase pre-paid SIM cards and "pay as you go" credit at markets and telephone stores.

Email & Internet 

Eduroam (education roaming) is the secure, worldwide roaming access service developed for the international research and education community.

Eduroam allows students, faculty, and staff from participating institutions (including UMB) to obtain Internet connectivity when visiting other participating institutions by utilizing their home institution email address on their laptop, smartphone, or other device.

How to Connect to Eduroam

Set up your device by following the appropriate guide below. Log in with your University credentials (email address and password).