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Independent Travel

CGIS does not encourage extensive travel while program classes are in session, since being engaged intimately with one place is more beneficial to building cultural competencies than traveling to many places for a short time. For that reason, personal travel is best realized before or after a program.

  • When traveling for personal reasons, share your itinerary with the onsite program staff, partners, and host family or roommates. We need to be able to reach you in case of an emergency on site or at home. You can also ensure that we can reach you in an emergency by registering your personal travel in the University's Travel Registry.
  • Familiarize yourself with applicable customs and reentry regulations for travel to countries outside of your host country. Be sure you understand the terms of your visa.
  • Avoid high-risk activities. 
  • Make sure you select safe methods of transportation; read the U.S. Department of State’s Road Safety section on their website.
  • Contact on-site partners, faculty, or program assistants about any health, safety, or security concerns related to your travel. CGIS’s Health and Safety Advisor is also a resource.

"Side Trips"  

A side trip is when a student participating on a UM global experience, such as a CGIS program, travels for personal reasons. It is recommended to register for a side trip if the travel destination is around or greater than 40 miles (60 kilometers) from the program site and/or involves spending one or more nights away from the program's base city.

Using the side trip function within MCompass, students can register travel dates and destinations. Registering side trips allows University of Michigan emergency responders to locate, contact, and support students in the event of an emergency.