International Travel

Harvard Travel Registry

Harvard Travel Assist provides medical and security advice and referrals and emergency evacuation services to eligible Harvard travelers abroad. To ensure access to these services, it is crucial that all international travel be registered in the MyTrips.

Each year, HGSE students travel to countries throughout the world to work, study, volunteer and conduct research.  HGSE and Harvard University have a number of resources available to assist eligible students traveling abroad.

Prior to international travel, HGSE students should be sure to do the following:

  1. Register the trip in MyTrips. This enables the University to locate you quickly and provide assistance in the event of an emergency (i.e., natural disaster, civil unrest, etc.). Registering is required for all students traveling under Harvard auspices.
  2. Review, sign and return the appropriate Assumption of Risk form.
  3. Review the services provided by International SOS. Students traveling abroad for academic or professional reasons are covered by Harvard Travel Assist, a program that provides 24-hour worldwide emergency medical and security evacuation services.  Please note that this program is a supplement to, not a substitute for, health insurance. These services are also available to students for personal travel at a discounted rate.
  4. Obtain the necessary passport and visa.

Travel to High-Risk Countries and Regions With Harvard “Sponsorship”

HGSE students who are considering traveling to High-Risk countries with Harvard "sponsorship"(i.e. the travel or related activities involve academic work that qualifies for Harvard credit, are funded in whole or part by Harvard, or are organized or accompanied by a Harvard faculty or staff member acting in a Harvard capacity),are required to:

  1. Typically one month prior to travel, the student submits a Travel Safety Questionnaire to GSS’s International Safety and Security team with a copy to the designated School official listed below.
  2. Depending on the travel, GSS may request a follow-up consultation, usually a brief phone call.
  3. Based on GSS’s recommendations, and in consultation with the student and any involved faculty, the designated School official may require additional safety measures and/or trip adjustments as a condition of receiving Harvard funding, credit, or other sponsorship. In exceptional cases where appropriate risk mitigation is found too costly or impractical, this may have the effect of cancelling or deferring the trip.

Decisions regarding student travel will ordinarily consider the student’s training and experience and the appropriate balance between safety concerns and the academic value of the project, consistent with the School’s risk tolerance, taking into account any alternative means to reach the academic objective.

Sometimes a country or region faces a significant safety deterioration while the student is in country. In those cases, the GSS International Safety and Security team will assess the risks of remaining in the country and the risks of departure, consulting with the student directly if appropriate, and will make a recommendation to the designated School official. The University and the School reserve the right to require students to leave a High-Risk country as a condition of maintaining Harvard sponsorship.