To: University Community
From: Persis Drell, Provost
Subject: International Travel Policy
Last updated on March 5, 2021
With respect to individual faculty, staff and graduate student travelers, Stanford University strongly recommends against, but does not prohibit, travel to countries where the U.S. Department of State has issued an official Travel Advisory of Level 4 (or “Do Not Travel”) or Level 3 (or “Reconsider Travel”) for either the country destination, or for the particular region or location of intended travel within the country destination, or where there is other reliable information of significant health or safety risks. The final decision about making a trip to such a country is up to the individual making the trip, however the University reserves the right to require the execution of an appropriate release or waiver before permitting such travel.
Travel to countries with ongoing conflicts and/or significant safety concerns that pose a danger to evacuation personnel requires additional notification and registration of travel itineraries prior to departure and may result in additional costs to individual travelers and the sponsoring unit. It is therefore strongly recommended that faculty, staff and graduate students consult with the Office of International Affairs well in advance of their travel dates to obtain advice on how to minimize risks to themselves and to their research.
When it comes to undergraduate students, Stanford-sponsored or Stanford-organized trips are prohibited to countries or regions and locations within a country where the U.S. Department of State has issued an official Travel Advisory of Level 4 (“Do Not Travel”) or Level 3 (“Reconsider Travel”) for either the country destination, or for the particular region or location of intended travel within the country destination, or where there is other reliable information of significant health or safety risks. No university funds or resources may be used, university sponsorship provided, or academic credit awarded, in support of travel to these locations.
There are also certain countries with governmental travel restrictions and we expect our faculty, students and staff to comply with those restrictions while traveling on university business. Travel that includes the shipment or hand-carry of certain Stanford property may be subject to US comprehensive embargoes and may require a Treasury or Commerce export license. Stanford University is committed to supporting international research and educational travel. To ensure the safety of the Stanford community we encourage all faculty, staff and students to engage in thoughtful planning of their travels well in advance and to fully utilize the resources that are available to them.
The Office of International Affairs (OIA) (723-3016, international.stanford.edu) also can provide context on a number of issues related to international travel, including export controls, anti-bribery laws, and personal health and safety. Please review information on the OIA website carefully when planning international travel and consult with OIA staff about your unique travel needs.
Impact of Executive Orders on Travel and Immigration Policy
As a result of recent Executive Orders regarding federal immigration policy, some Stanford travelers from several identified “travel ban” countries may experience additional scrutiny or be denied re-entry upon returning to the United States.
What you can do
Stanford strongly recommends that any Stanford travelers from “travel ban” countries review Stanford’s Immigration Issues and Resources webpage, and consult with the Bechtel International Center prior to planning travel outside the United States. Please email the Bechtel International Center at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are from the affected “travel ban” countries and 1) are planning a trip outside the US or 2) are currently outside the U.S. and plan to return to the U.S.
In addition, the Office of International Affairs maintains a university-wide International Travel Registry for all Stanford travelers. The University strongly recommends that all travelers register their international travel with OIA. Any Stanford travelers who may be considering travel to the identified countries should contact the Office of International Affairs for advice, prior to beginning travel.
In rare cases, the University may grant a travel policy exception for travel to a Level 3 (“reconsider travel”) or Level 4 (“do not travel”) country or location, or to a location where there is other reliable information of significant health or safety risks. The process for requesting such an exception is outlined here. It is imperative to begin the process to request a travel policy exception early enough to allow time for review. As stated in the linked memo, any request made thirty (30) days or less before a travel deadline will not be considered.