International Travel Toolkit: Faculty, Staff & Post-docs

                                Things to Do Before You Travel Abroad

                                              Click on each item for more information

Read up on the safety and security situation of your destination

Before making travel arrangements, use these resources to determine if it’s safe to travel to your destination

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • How safe is my destination?
  • Is it OK to travel to a country with a threat rating of “4”?
  • Is the safety/security environment of the country in flux?
  • Would it make sense to visit a different, safer country instead?
  • If I go, what resources will I use to monitor changes in the security situation or respond in an emergency?

Visit the “Safety & Security” section of this toolkit to learn about the steps you can take to travel more safely.

Check your passport and get a visa

Passport basics

  • It can take several months to get a passport; apply now if you don’t have one
  • Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months after you return from travel 

Determine if you’ll need a visa

Visit CIBT’s website (Yale’s preferred vendor for visas)

Questions to ask:

  • What type of visa do I need (tourist, student)?
  • How long will it take for my visa to arrive?
  • Will I need a transit visa (for a layover or travel through another country on the way to my destination)?
Register your travel

Register with Yale through the Office of International Affairs (requires a NetID)

  • Help Yale locate and contact you in a major emergency
  • You can start your registration as soon as you know your destination and approximate dates of travel, then return to the registry as often as needed to add or update information about your flights, where you’ll be staying, local contact information and more, as those details become available
  • IMPORTANT:  You will need to login to the registry using your NetID and must use a Yale networked computer or a Yale VPN connection

Register with the U.S. State Department through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (if you are a U.S. citizen)

  • Help the State Department assist you in an emergency

If you are a citizen of another country, contact your country’s embassy in your destination to let them know your travel plans.

Visit Passport Health or your personal physician

Schedule a consultation

Schedule a travel consultation with Passport Health at 203-288-3115 or accounts@passporthealthusa.com or your personal physician at least 6-8 weeks before you depart. 

You’ll discuss:

  • vaccinations
  • traveling with medication
  • other health concerns in the destination

Schedule your appointment early; many immunizations are given in a series over time.

For more information

For additional info on vaccines and other health concerns, see the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention travelers’ website and use the drop-down menu for destinations.

Print and take your UnitedHealthcare Global card

Print the card

  • Keep it with you in your wallet or purse
  • Email it to yourself in case your wallet or purse is lost or stolen
  • Program the numbers into your cell phone

Emergency travel assistance

As a Yale traveler, you are automatically covered by UnitedHealthcare Global’s services

UnitedHealthcare Global is Yale’s partner in providing medical, security, and general travel assistance to travelers

  • medical and security evacuations
  • lost or stolen passports
  • legal referrals
  • emergency transfer of funds

Assistance is available 24/7/365, anywhere in the world (even in the U.S. more than 100 miles from Yale)

It’s NOT health insurance!

Understand your health insurance coverage

Check your health insurance coverage

1.  Determine if your current health insurance plan covers you while abroad, including for chronic medical conditions (see Yale Health coverage information below).

2.  If you’re not covered abroad, or have incomplete coverage for your needs, consider purchasing an international travel health insurance policy for the duration of your travel.

  • SquareMouth is an online tool for helping travelers compare and identify appropriate international travel health insurance coverage.  The International Operations & Compliance Committee has not reviewed the information on the SquareMouth website to verify its thoroughness or accuracy and therefore travelers are advised to do their own due diligence before using this site and purchasing insurance.

Yale Health Plan Coverage

If you’re enrolled in the Yale Health Hospitalization/ Specialty Care Coverage, you are covered for urgent or emergency health care anywhere in the world.

Insurance Card

Very important – Take your Yale Health (or other) insurance card with you.

  • Obtain a card at the Yale Health Center or request one via the Yale Health website
  • You may not receive treatment without one 

Acute Care

Call the Acute Care telephone line (203-432-0123) from abroad to speak to a Yale Health clinician.

See to your financial needs

Plan to bring a combination of cash (though never carry too much at once), debit or ATM cards, credit cards, and traveler’s checks, if viable for your destination:

Tell your bank and credit card companies that you’ll be traveling

  • Ask if they charge foreign transaction fees
  • Ask if you’ll need a PIN to make purchases abroad

Clean out your wallet or purse

  • Take only the credit cards and ID you will need

Exchange some cash to your destination’s local currency to last the first couple of days

  • Exchange money at a bank before you leave the U.S. or get similar rates of exchange in the airport when you arrive

Find out about Arrival and Departure Taxes and Currency Restrictions

  • Be aware of any applicable arrival or departure taxes that you may encounter
  • Likewise learn about any restrictions your destination may have on how much currency you can enter and exit with
Review Yale policies and procedures that apply to international travel
Learn about your destination

Useful resources:

Take photocopies of important documents

Take a copy of each, leave a copy at home, or scan & email to yourself and others

  • Passport identification page and visa
  • Driver’s license
  • Insurance cards
  • Credit cards (front and back)
  • Flight and other travel itineraries
  • Immunizations and prescriptions
  • Significant medical history (e.g., surgeries, severe allergies, major illnesses)
Look into cell phones and communicating

Cell phones

Ways to get a cell phone for your travel:

  • Ask your current cell phone service provider to unlock your U.S. cell phone
  • Buy an international cell phone before you leave
  • Buy a phone when you reach your destination then purchase a SIM card that can be recharged on a pay-as-you-go basis

Receiving calls from home

Making international calls from your cell phone can be expensive, but incoming calls may be free

Collect calls

Learn how to make collect calls from your destination

Emergency cell phone use

If you are using your cell phone during an emergency that could last hours or even days, try texting instead of calling to save battery life on your phone

Consider personal property insurance

Protect your property

Consider personal property insurance for electronics or other expensive personal items   

  • See if your belongings are covered abroad by your homeowner’s policy
  • Try the personal property insurance program made available by Yale
Ensure you'll have access to Yale's online resources

Access resources

Many Yale applications are restricted to campus computers

  • File shares from computers on the Yale Network
  • Library journals and databases
  • Oracle applications

To access these resources from abroad, download the Yale VPN Client before you travel

Secure wireless connection

Create secure and private connections to Yale while traveling

 

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