Planning Your Trip

Planning Your Trip (Start Early!)

When planning a trip it is important to register on-line with the respective country's Consular Registration

When traveling abroad it is highly recommended that you register with the respective consulate department. The U.S. Department of State now offers online embassy registration. Registering with U.S. Consulates abroad ensures that, in the case of an emergency, consular officers can contact you and offer assistance when needed. Anyone traveling abroad may register with the Embassy or Consulate in the country they are visiting. The U.S.D.S. highly recommends that anyone who plans to stay in a country longer than one month, or anyone traveling to a country experiencing political unrest, register with the local Consulate.

UC Davis International Travel Guidelines

Global Health Packing List (pdf)

Travel Insurance:
UC Davis students and faculty are covered by free travel insurance. Register here: Student Travel Insurance

Travel safety: 

Visit UC Davis Student Health Service to discuss specific preventive interventions you may need.  For example:

  • Assure your health and evacuation insurance status through the UC Davis Student Health Service so that you are aware of appropriate procedures, and purchase additional coverage if necessary.
  • Consider taking post-exposure prophylactic medication (PEP kit) with you if you might be exposed to needle sticks in an HIV endemic area.
  • Be immunized against Hepatitis A well in advance of traveling abroad (two doses required).
  • Have an up-to-date Tdap.
  • Check if malarial prophylaxis is recommended for country you are traveling to.
  • If you might be exposed to TB, get a PPD in advance of your travel and again after your return, and get fitted for a mask to bring with you.
  • You will need to schedule an appointment with your PCP to get a referral to the UC Davis travel clinic in order to get your malaria medications, etc. Yellow fever and other vaccines are available through selected pharmacies but must be administered by a registered provider - call your pharmacy about pricing. Take a supply of common medications (antibiotics, pain relief, Pepto-bismol, etc.) with you when traveling to isolated areas.


Most countries outside of the United States will require a visa and/or immunizations to enter their country. When planning your trip, it is recommended that you identify the nearest consulate or embassy of the country(ies) you plan to visit; and research their recommendations and guidelines for travel. 

Your passport must be valid at least six months into the future at all times, especially upon entry or re-entry to the U.S.

The visa stamp in your passport should be valid on the date of your return to the U.S. (It does not, however, need to remain valid during your stay in the U.S.) If you have an old, expired passport with a valid U.S. entry visa, you do not need to get a new visa stamp in your new passport as long as you carry both passports when you enter the U.S. Canadian citizens do not need a U.S. visa. Canadian landed immigrants, however, are required to obtain U.S. entry visas.

Check the U.S. Department of State for the standard visa procedures at each U.S. consulate or embassy.


  • Be prepared to expect travel delays.  Those traveling outside of the U.S. should be aware of possible delays when reentering the United States. National security concerns have occasionally led to long delays in returning to the U.S. for some students and scholars doing research in sensitive areas.
  • Cell phones: International cell phone plans are often costly. You may be able to purchase a pay-as-you-go mobile phone when you arrive in your host country. Expect to pay around $20 for a new, basic model phone. You may be able to use a US phone, but it will have to be unlocked and must have a changeable SIM card.
  • Electrical adapters and converters: In many countries you will need both an electrical plug adapter AND a wall power converter to use your appliances. The wall converter will probably be available for purchase in the country where you travel, but both are available online and at electronics stores. Look of the voltage requirements for the country where you are traveling to determine which type you need.