International Travel Planning Policy

Dear Columbia University community,

An essential part of Columbia’s mission is “to support research and teaching on global issues” and “to convey the products of its efforts to the world.” These activities frequently involve travel outside the United States. While traveling internationally can be an enriching experience, it also entails risks. Because of this, careful planning must precede international travel, even for seasoned travelers. Each destination requires a different strategy for responding to small inconveniences and serious emergencies.

Anyone planning international travel should carefully assess the risk of the destination and specific itinerary. To aid this planning and to provide support to those whose scholarly inquiry takes them overseas, over the past year the University has developed and now established a new International Travel Planning Policy and created a new companion website.

The Policy establishes requirements for planning international travel that is organized, funded, arranged, or recognized by the University. Specifically, you should register your international Columbia Travel through the University’s global travel portal ( Registering Columbia travel ahead of time enables the University to mobilize more quickly and effectively should there be an emergency.

The new website,, provides important travel alerts, logistics information, and other resources for international travelers.

Please contact with any questions about the Policy or the website.

Thank you and safe travels.


John H. Coatsworth

Lee Goldman
Executive Vice President and Dean of the Faculties of Health Sciences and Medicine
Chief Executive, Columbia University Medical Center

Anne Sullivan
Executive Vice President for Finance and Information Technology

If you cannot access the new International Travel Planning Policy at the link above, please visit the policy website at