Congratulations! You are about to embark on a life-changing journey. Before you can set off for a semester or year abroad, you will need to take care of a few details. Your pre-departure checklist:
- Pre-Departure Meetings: Every semester, the Career Center holds pre-departure information sessions for everyone who will be traveling abroad for the upcoming semester or year. We will discuss visa issues, health insurance, safety, cultural sensitivity and anything you have questions about. Attendance is required.
- Passport and Visa: Federal regulations require that all U.S. travelers have a passport when flying to another country. A new passport takes four to six weeks to process once your application is submitted. Learn more at the U.S. Department of State. Some countries require a visa or temporary residence permit to study abroad. Contact the Career Center to find out the rules for your destination country. Again, the visa application process can take several weeks, so give yourself plenty of time.
- Health Insurance: All of our exchange partner institutions require that Clarkson students have full health coverage while overseas. If your current health insurance doesn’t cover you abroad, contact the Career Center for a list of international student health plans.
- International Student ID: The International Student Identification Card will get you discounts on transportation abroad (car rentals, bus, train, metro, etc.) and qualify you for student rates at museums, concerts, hotels, restaurants and other travel destinations. The Career Center is authorized to issue the card and can save you money by using your Clarkson ID photo.
- Purchase Airfare: Getting the most inexpensive airfare is an art, not a science, but it never hurts to start early. Use websites like Orbitz and Kayak to compare prices and make sure to search for student discounts. In some cases, visiting the airline site directly may provide the most reasonable cost.