Please follow this step-by-step checklist as you prepare for your semester abroad. This is a general timeline for all students– be sure to also adhere to any different or additional deadlines set by your advisor or specific study abroad program.

Immediately Following Post-Decision Status Notification

These are the tasks you will need to begin to address immediately and in the upcoming weeks and months before departure.

  • Log into your MyElonGlobal account and review all materials and complete any required elements, including your Personal Information Form.
  • If traveling abroad, verify that your passport is valid for six months beyond the date you will return to the US. Apply for a new passport immediately if your current passport expires prior to that date. If traveling within the US, ensure you have valid ID for domestic flights.
  • Inform yourself of the visa process for your country, if required.
  • Review the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) information on travel health, including requirements for your host country.
  • Schedule any necessary medical and dental appointments, taking into consideration recommended vaccinations for your program’s region(s).
  • Complete the course request process
  • Review information about housing at Elon upon return.
  • Prepare yourself by researching your host communities.
  • Attend all mandatory orientation(s) and any other program meetings or events.
  • Develop a budget.
  • Contact the Disability Services for any necessary accommodations.
  • Begin researching flights and planning your travel.
  • If traveling abroad, look for an e-mail from iNext regarding your health insurance.
  • Share program information with your family.
  • Plan how you will handle money and call your bank to discuss your options– If traveling abroad, does your bank have an international option? Do you need to order an emergency credit card? Should you set up an account abroad?

One Month Prior to Departure

    • Upload passport copy, copy of insurance card, or other required documents specific to your program to your online account.
    • If traveling abroad, register on the iNext and Europassist websites. Refer to your e-mail from iNext for log-in details.
    • Fill all necessary prescriptions for the time you will be away.


One Week Prior to Departure

  • Begin packing.
  • Register with the US Department of State Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
  • Reconfirm your flight(s) to your destination.
  • Make copies of the following and place one set in your carry-on luggage, and leave a second set at home with your family. Depending on your destination, consider scanning copies and saving them as Google Docs for easy access anywhere.
    • Passport/visa
    • Acceptance letters from Elon/program abroad
    • Airline tickets
    • Credit card/traveler’s checks
    • ID cards such as ISIC or iNext
    • Health insurance information/card (iNext and your personal insurance)
    • Any prescriptions or doctor’s notes from your physician
  • Contact your credit card company and bank to inform them of the exact dates of your domestic or international travel.
  • Back-up all your data from your computer, phone, etc in case your computer crashes or is lost or stolen.
  • Make a list of all contact information in your host community and the Isabella Global Education Center (GEC). Carry a copy with you and leave one with your family.
  • Establish a program dates/travel plan and a communication plan with your family.
  • Inform family/friends of important program dates.
  • Stay rested and hydrated in the days ahead of your departure.

Day of Departure

  • Review this entire checklist.
  • Review your arrival plan with your family.
  • Finish packing your carry-on bag.
  • Confirm that you have your passport and visa/entry documents for international flights, valid ID for domestic flights, plane tickets, and contact information for your program abroad accessible in your carry-on bag.
  • Arrive at the airport at least three hours prior to your international flight, or two hours prior to your domestic flight.

Upon Arrival

  • Check in at housing/host institution according to instructions provided by the program.
  • Contact your family as soon as possible and let them know you have arrived safely.
  • If traveling to a different time zone, stay awake during the day and do your best to accustom yourself to the local schedule.
  • Stay hydrated following your flight(s).
  • Be prepared to experience culture shock as you adjust to your surroundings.