Checklist: Preparing for Departure
These checklists provide general pre-departure steps for all programs. Check with your program and/or directors for other program-specific things to do.
- Get a Passport. Estimated processing time is 6-8 weeks, but may be longer.
- Check with your program for visa requirements. Some countries require visas for entry, others only require visas for stay over a specified time period.
- Are you an international student? Check in with International Student Services and Study Abroad for requirements.
- Mark your calendar for all pre-departure meetings and orientation. These meetings are required; dates can be found in your approval letter.
- Know your program’s cost: stthomas.edu/studyabroad > Search for a Program; or program provider’s website.
- Note your program’s cancellation policy and dates.
- Review our pages for Health and Safety information for information on travel visits, insurance, and staying safe and healthy while abroad.
- Review Study Abroad Student Policies.
- Make a travel appointment and review Health Services Travel Clinic page.
- Get courses approved! Any courses you take abroad will automatically count as elective credit for graduation. In order for a course to fulfill a major, minor or core requirement, a signature from the appropriate department chair is required. This requirement only applies to Other Approved Programs, not St Thomas or UMAIE programs.
- Make copies of your passport and visa to carry with you, and to leave at home.
- Prepare a list of emergency contact information you may need: onsite program, St Thomas, your parents, and anything else that applies to you.
Location specific preparation
- Register with the U.S. State Department Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
- Know currency and exchange rate of your destination. xe.com is a good resource.
- Advise bank and credit cards of your travels; ensure cards are accepted at destination.
- Have at least two methods of accessing money.
- Research, research, research. Your time abroad will fly by. Make the most of it by learning as much as possible before getting on the plane.
While Abroad and After Return
- Upon arrival your program will hold an orientation covering many items including safety and emergency procedures. Attend and pay close attention.
- Know emergency contact information for your program staff/directors, the address and contact information for your housing.
- Know the in-country equivalent of 911.
- Review Health and Safety pages for information on staying safe and healthy while abroad.
- Review S-D-R grading policy (pass/fail). Form must be submitted to the Office of Study Abroad by required deadlines.
- Authorize program to send your transcript to the St Thomas Admissions Office.
- Monitor your St Thomas degree evaluation to ensure courses match your course approval form. Transcripts usually arrive at St Thomas 6-8 weeks after program ends.