University of Minnesota  FAQ

International Travel Registration


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Please use the contact section in the governing policy.

This policy concerns faculty and staff. For information on student travel, see Student Travel and Education Abroad: Health and Safety.

  1. Who is required to register their travel?

    All faculty and staff (including post-doc associates) traveling abroad for University purposes, regardless of funding source, must register their travel with the GPS Alliance.

    All graduate students, undergraduate students, graduate assistants, residents, and fellows traveling abroad for University purposes or on University programs, regardless of funding source, must register their travel with the GPS Alliance. They must follow Administrative Policy: Student Travel and Education Abroad: Health and Safety, which requires completion of appropriate paperwork; receipt of mandatory travel, health, and security insurance; and, if applicable, permission from the University’s International Travel Risk Assessment and Advisory Committee (ITRAAC) to travel to a U.S. Department of State Level 3 or 4 Travel Advisory location

  2. What is "travel for University purposes"?

    Travel for University purposes is defined as any travel paid for by the University or completed within the context of employment with the University. This includes travel to conferences, meetings, or guest lecture opportunities and research funded, facilitated, or supported by the University. This also includes travel for sponsored projects. Personal travel on vacation, without University support and where University employment is not relevant to the activity, are not considered travel for University purposes.

  3. Who sees the data collected in the registration system?

    Unless the traveler gives express permission, the traveler’s information will only be used to provide emergency assistance. Although specific traveler information will remain private, aggregate information can be requested by contacting [email protected].

  4. Who approves international travel plans?

    Authorization is granted within department or unit. Departments have the discretion to require their employees to obtain preapproval for travel. The international travel registry requirement does not add a requirement for central travel approval.

  5. What is the requirement for staff and faculty traveling with students or approving travel with students?

    When traveling with students or approving travel for students (this includes approving credit, approving degree requirements, or providing funding), it is the responsibility of the staff/faculty member to ensure all requirements of Administrative Policy: Student Travel and Education Abroad: Health and Safety are met. Faculty and staff traveling with student programs facilitated by an education abroad office are not required to register travel because the travel details will be registered along with the student program. For more information:

  6. In what situations will faculty/staff be contacted while traveling?

    Any contact will be based on major emergency events in relevant locations. A benefit to registering travel is that faculty/staff will receive assistance when needed but also will receive contact information and resources that can be used in the event of a personal emergency while traveling.

  7. When must I register my travel?

    Travelers must register prior to travel. It will benefit travelers to register a few weeks prior to departure because of the travel resources provided within the system. However, registering on the same day as departure fulfills the requirement.

  8. How do I register my travel?

    An online form is available at the GPS Alliance website.

  9. Why must I register my travel?

    The two main goals of the policy are to (1) provide pre-departure assistance and information to faculty/staff and (2) to know where faculty/staff are located around the globe in the event of an emergency so that the University can more effectively provide assistance and coordinate help.

  10. How will the University assist travelers in a natural disaster or military action?

    The University will use the tools available to it to assist travelers in all emergency situations. The two most powerful tools available to University travelers are through the traveler insurance programs. The assistance is only insured for those enrolled in the coverage so be sure you understand your insurance coverage and options. Here are recent examples of University evacuations:

    • Sierra Leone flooding/mudslides, August 2017
    • Turkey political unrest, March 2016
    • Thailand natural disaster, October and November 2011
    • Japan natural disaster evacuation, April 2011
  11. Do I need to register travel to Canada, Mexico, or the U.S. territories?

    Yes, travel to any country (including Mexico and Canada) or territory outside the continental U.S. (such as American Samoa, Guam, Midway Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Wake Island) is considered international travel for purposes of this policy.  Travel to Alaska and Hawaii is not considered international travel.