The Catholic University of America

International Travel Policy

Approved by: President
History: Issued   - November 17, 2016
  Revised - 
   
Related Policies: Travel Policy
Additional References: Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)Department of States Travel and Alerts and WarningsInternational Health and Emergency Evacuation Insurance Coverage;Travel Health and Safety Resources and Overseas Crisis Management Protocol (http://cuabroad.cua.edu/healthandsafety/index.cfm)
Responsible Official: Associate Provost for International Affairs tel. (202) 319-4698

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I.    Policy Statement 

The University is committed to the health, safety, and security of all members of the University community who engage in International Travel for University-Related Activities. The Center for Global Education, with support from the Overseas Policy, Protocol, and Risk Management Committee, coordinates, facilitates and overseas all International Travel per this policy. 

All members of the University community proposing to undertake International Travel for University-Related Activities must follow the steps set forth in this policy, register their trip with the Center for Global Education, obtain the University’s International Health and Emergency Evacuation Insurance Coverage, register their trip with the Department of State, and become familiar with all University Travel Health and Safety Resources published at http://cuabroad.cua.edu/healthandsafety/index.cfm. The University reserves the right to limit, prohibit or suspend travel for University-Related Activities to any destination.  

This policy must be read in conjunction with the University’s general Travel Policy. 

This policy applies regardless of the source of funding for the travel.  Failure to follow this policy may result in loss of insurance coverage or denial of reimbursement of travel expenses. 

II.          Definitions 

A.     International Travel means movement by individuals outside of the U.S. and its possessions and/or territories. 

B.     High Risk Travel means travel to destinations where International health and Emergency Evacuation Insurance Coverage cannot be guaranteed, or where, in the determination of the University, significant health, safety, or security risks are present that inhibit the University’s ability to assist University travelers.  Such risks may include, but are not limited to: natural disaster; increased incidence or outbreaks of infectious disease; war or armed conflict; civil or political unrest or instability; elevated risk of terrorist attacks; or increased violence or crime. 

C.     University Travel Registry means the confidential databases managed by the Center for Global Education used to maintain key information for faculty, staff and students traveling to international destinations. The Registry is the official and authoritative source of traveler information that forms the basis for the University’s emergency response protocols and communications strategy (e.g., alerts, warnings, evacuation notices) when responding to an emergency or critical incident abroad. 

D.   University-Related Activities are those undertaken in pursuant of the University’s mission, including but not limited to: academic and non-academic programs; teaching; research; academic or industry conferences/forums, and administrative activities. 

E.   University Travel Restriction means that International Travel to a specific destination for University-Related Activities is prohibited by the University. 

III.         International Travel Requirements 

A.    Approval 

Schools, departments or other University units may have additional policies and procedures that support this overall policy. Staff and faculty proposing to undertake International Travel for University-Related Activities are responsible for following all such policies and procedures, and for obtaining any necessary unit approval for that travel in advance as set forth in the Travel Policy 

B.     Expenses to be Charged to Sponsored Programs 

If travel expenses are charged to a grant/contract source, the terms of the grant or contract will take precedence if they are more restrictive than the University policy.  Grant-sponsored restrictions may be waived only by the sponsoring agency and must be supported with documentation.  Travelers should be aware that certain expenses, such as airfare, meals, and alcohol, are subject to additional federal requirements and limitations.  Failure to comply with sponsor and/or federal requirements will result in denial of reimbursement.  See the Travel Policy for requirements and limitations pertaining to Sponsored Programs. 

C.     Review of Safety Information for Proposed Destination 

In advance of any proposed International Travel, travelers must review the Department of State and Centers for Disease Control country-specific safety information available at Travel Health & Safety Resources.  As discussed in section F below, High Risk Travel may be denied by the University.  Accordingly, travelers are strongly encouraged to seek departmental or divisional approval and to consult with the Center for Global Education well in advance of making high risk travel arrangements or incurring any travel-related costs. 

D.     Mandatory Travel Registration 

All faculty, staff, and students traveling internationally pursuant to University-Related Activities must register their travel via the University Travel Registry before the expected departure date.  Travelers also should update the Registry as additional information becomes available, or as changes occur throughout the duration of the trip, such as additions to the travel itinerary. International trips must be entered in the Travel Registry no less than thirty (30) business days prior to departure. 

E.     Mandatory International Insurance Coverage 

Upon registering their trip, all faculty, staff, students and accompanying family members traveling internationally pursuant to University-Related Activities must obtain the University’s International Health and Emergency Evacuation Insurance Coverage, which includes health insurance and emergency evacuation coverage while abroad.  The insurance must be obtained at least thirty (30) calendar days prior to the expected departure date.  Note that the Center for Global Education does not fund insurance premiums.  The individual traveler must arrange funding for insurance premiums. 

            F.         Registration with the Department of State 

All travelers who are U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to register their trip through the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  Enrolling in STEP enables the nearest U.S. embassy to notify travelers of safety conditions in the destination country, and contact travelers in the event of emergencies. Travelers who are non-U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to sign up for the Department of State's Travel and Alerts and Warnings.

            G.     Limitation/Prohibition on High Risk Travel 

The University may warn travelers, impose additional requirements, impose a University Travel Restriction, or deny approval to travel where the travel constitutes High Risk Travel.  The following University Travel Restriction guidelines will apply: 

1.      Faculty, staff, and students wishing to travel for University-Related Activities to destinations under University Travel Restrictions for urgent and compelling reasons must obtain advance authorization from the Provost and/or cognizant vice president in consultation with the Associate Provost for International Affairs. 

2.      Students cannot be required to participate in any education abroad experience in destinations subject to a University Travel Restriction in order to satisfy a degree requirement. 

3.      Regular recurring education abroad programs may be suspended. Regular recurring education abroad programs are defined as those programs that take place annually or biennially. 

4.      Students who travel to destinations under University Travel Restrictions or remain in those destinations after being advised by the University to evacuate may not be eligible for University funding or academic credit, may be subject to restrictions in other benefits or services, and may be subject to University discipline. 

5.      Faculty, staff, and students who are present in a country where a Travel Restriction subsequently is imposed are required to leave that country as soon as possible. The University will provide guidance. 

H.     Foreign Travel Involving Student or Alumni Groups 

Faculty or staff leading students or alumni abroad to any destination for study, research, or other reasons must have their plans reviewed and approved in advance by the Center for Global Education, and must attend pre-departure orientation. Group leaders also are responsible for the following: 

1.      Entering all trip itinerary, lodging, and overseas contact information into the University Travel Registry; 

2.      Confirming that all students have obtained International Health and Emergency Evacuation Insurance through the University’s authorized vendor; 

3.      Verifying that the Travel Registry registration and travel abroad insurance has been provided to the Center for Global Education; 

4.      Following University guidance, including University Travel Restrictions; and 

5.      Complying with best practices for health, safety and security planning for pre-departure orientation, during the trip, and post-trip review.

              I.      Crisis and Emergency Planning  

Prior to departing for International Travel, all travelers must review the University’s travel health and safety resources and Overseas Crisis Management Protocol, available athttp://cuabroad.cua.edu/healthandsafety/index.cfm  These resources are important for preventing, as well as responding to issues that may arise while abroad, and will aid the University in supporting travelers in the event of a crisis or emergency.