Student Travel Registration
This page is designed to assist Vanderbilt undergraduate, graduate, and professional students in understanding university requirements as they plan their travel abroad. University requirements for travel are laid out in the Student International Travel Policy.
This page also outlines the role of the Study Abroad Risk Assessment Committee (SARAC) and how to apply for review by the committee.
What Is Travel Registration?
Vanderbilt University provides global assistance to travelers overseas through Vanderbilt Incident Response for Travel (VIRT), a team dedicated to providing safety-related guidance and assistance for traveling members of the Vanderbilt University community. VIRT’s services are available to anyone traveling for Vanderbilt-sponsored activities. The travel registration process ensures that VIRT can effectively aid student travelers in crisis.
Who Needs to Register Travel?
All students—graduate, undergraduate, and professional—are required to register any travel that is Vanderbilt-sponsored. A full definition of “sponsored travel” can be found in the Student International Travel Policy, but briefly:
You need to register your travel if your travel advances your degree, if it is organized by or on behalf of a Vanderbilt group (student organization, athletics, etc.), or if it is funded or paid for by or through Vanderbilt.
Examples of travel that require registration include travel to conferences, travel to for research, study abroad undertaken while on leave of absence (if you will receive credit at Vanderbilt), athletics trips, trips organized by a student organization, and trips undertaken using funds from a Vanderbilt-managed grant or fellowship.
Students who study abroad on a program offered through the Global Education Office (GEO), including Maymester Abroad courses, will be registered automatically by GEO and do not need to take any action.
How Do I Register My Travel?
There are four steps to registering your travel. Your trip organizer or departmental administrative officer may require you to provide documentation that you have completed some or all of these steps.
- Check Vanderbilt’s Restricted Regions List. If any of your destinations is on the list, you will need to request an exception from the Study Abroad Risk Assessment Committee (SARAC). Find out more here.
- Sign the Release of Liability Form and turn it in to your trip organizer or departmental administrative officer.
- Register your itinerary with Vanderbilt’s travel assistance service, International SOS.
- Purchase Vanderbilt’s international health insurance for the duration of your trip.
What Else Should I Do?
In addition to the required travel registration, we highly recommend that you also do the following:
- Get a travel health consultation from Vanderbilt Student Health or another medical provider, at least 4–6 weeks in advance of travel.
- Register with your home country’s embassy or state diplomatic service so that you can receive local security updates and so that your country can aid you in an emergency. US citizens will register with the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.
- Review key health and safety resources.
- Add the phone number for Vanderbilt Incident Response for Travel to your phone’s address book, +1 615-322-2745. Learn what VIRT is so that you can use it if needed.
Purchase International Health Insurance
In order to ensure that all students are adequately covered overseas, and to further ensure that Vanderbilt can effectively aid students in the event of critical need, all students are required to carry Vanderbilt’s international health insurance. (Students who study abroad through the Global Education Office will be automatically enrolled and do not need to take any action.)
Vanderbilt’s international health insurance plan is more comprehensive than most plans and includes coverage for mandatory evacuation, preexisting conditions, and mental health and substance abuse treatment. Unlike many international insurance plans, it also covers injuries that involve substance use. Very few standard US health insurance plans—include Vanderbilt’s domestic plans—offer coverage overseas at this level. The plan is offered by GeoBlue (formerly HTH), and many details about the plan can be found in the Member Guide.
How to Purchase
You will purchase your insurance as part of Vanderbilt’s group plan. Go to the HTH Group Plans web page, then enter the Group Access Code KXP-37915 in the box provided and submit.
You will be guided through the process of signing up for coverage. The minimum enrollment time is two weeks.
Once eligible participants receive their Medical Insurance ID card from GeoBlue, they should visit geobluestudents.com and, using the certificate number on the front of the card, sign in to the site for comprehensive information and services relating to this plan. Participants can track claims, search for a doctor, view plan information, download claim forms and read health and security information.
Detailed information on eligibility requirements, period of coverage, and details of coverage can be found in the Description of Coverage.
What to Do If You Need Help
The GeoBlue Member Guide has information on how to find a provider, submit claims, request payment and more. If you need help, you can contact Vanderbilt Incident Response for Travel: In an emergency, dial +1 615-322-2745 and tell the Public Safety dispatcher that you are calling for VIRT. In a non-emergency situation, email firstname.lastname@example.org.