Prior to Leaving Australia

Prior to any travel, it is important to do your research. 

Initial research

  1. Research the countries you plan to travel to, especially in regards to safety issues, the current COVID-19 situation, available health services, visa requirements, transportation in country and accommodation.
  2. Consider the political, environmental and legal requirements of the country and how they will affect you. Practices and acceptances vary from country to country.
  3. Always research your accommodation options prior to leaving Australia. Ensure you are satisfied with the location and accommodation standards. Even prestigious universities can be located in neighborhoods with crime rates.

    Seek travel approval

    1. Complete the compulsory Pre-Departure Tutorial.  
    2. Seek approval for your travel by completing the UNSW Risk Assessment form.  See the Pre Departure tutorial for details.  All travel must be approved.  
    3. Up to date country information, travel arrangements and risk on your destination(s) can be found through Smartraveller and Global 24 - UNSW’s emergency response provider.
    4. Monitor Global 24 and Department of Foreign Affairs web sites for international developments, travel warnings, COVID-19 updates and safety tips when planning your trip.
    5. If you are an Australian citizen subscribe to smartraveller prior to your overseas trip.
    6. If you are not an Australian citizen subscribe to the relevant travel advisories for your country of nationality.

    Visas and passports

    1. Check the validity of your visas or apply for the relevant visa well in advance of departure.
    2. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months before expiry to be eligible to depart from Australia and to arrive in certain countries.
    3. Add the contact details of your next of kin in pencil at the back of your passport.


    1. Check the rules for your host country(s) and/or university(s) and ensure you will have the approved/recognised COVID-19 vaccination

    2. Check the quarantine requirements and costs for your host country and if you need to provide evidence of a negative result before you leave home /on arrival

    3. Be aware of any restrictions and public health measures that may be in place at your host destination.

    Health check up

    1. Have a general health check before you leave, including dental and optical examinations. Be medically prepared before you go and know how to stay healthy while overseas.
    2. Ask your GP about any vaccinations before you leave.
    3. Check Smartraveller for more tips and advice.

    Health and travel insurance

    1. Check UNSW travel insurance coverage.
    2. Register your travel with Global 24.
    3. Always include the travel insurance hotline number in the back of your passport or other travel documentation, in case of emergencies.
    4. While UNSW aims to assist you with cost effective insurance, the coverage may not meet the requirements or personal needs of all students. In such cases, you must arrange your own travel coverage through another insurance provider.
    5. Some universities offer their own health insurance. If this is compulsory you will need to purchase their insurance.

    Final preparations

    1. Update your emergency contact details on myUNSW.
    2. Let family and friends know your travel itinerary.  Leave copies of the inside front cover of passports, visas, e-tickets, vaccinations and travel itineraries with a family member or trusted friend and include contact details for each place you will be staying.
    3. If UNSW or the Australian Government determines that travel to a host country be deferred, your exchange or travel will be suspended. UNSW travel insurance does not cover countries with high travel warnings.

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