By supporting you in understanding and mitigating the possible risks you may encounter, U of T Safety Abroad is dedicated to supporting safer student experiences abroad. Review the steps below to get started on learning more about what you are required to do in order to travel on university activity, and how U of T Safety Abroad can help you.

Safety Abroad Requirements

Before travelling on university activity abroad, there are certain steps that you must complete.

*For travel to higher risk locations, see the “Travel Advisories” section below.

Do the Safety Abroad requirements apply to me?

Yes, if you’re traveling on University Activity! Not sure if you’re traveling on university activity?

University activity is defined as any of the following:

  • Activity that is funded in part or in whole by the university
  • Activity that is organized, sanctioned, or administered by the university
  • Activity which provides participants with academic credit

What do you have to do before going overseas as a University of Toronto student?

Before travelling overseas on University of Toronto activities, all students will need to complete several Safety Abroad requirements. You will need to check your destination’s Travel Advisory, complete a Safety Abroad Workshop, acquire travel health insurance, and, finally, add your trip to the Safety Abroad Registry.

These requirements are meant to help keep you safe overseas, help you plan for any issues you might face, and improve the University of Toronto’s ability to support you during your trip. For example, after completing these requirements, you will know how to access services such as International SOS, which provides emergency support to U of T students overseas.

So, what do you have to do to complete these requirements?

First, take a look at the Government of Canada’s Travel Advisories. These Advisories are frequently updated, and provide guidance on visas, vaccinations, safety issues, emergency numbers, and other useful information.

The Advisories also have 4 levels of risk ratings. These levels are the basis for Safety Abroad’s risk ratings for student travel, as they indicate levels of safety and security concerns for each location.

Locations with risk levels 1 and 2 are open to all students who have completed the requirements in this video.

Students may be allowed to travel to the higher risk levels of 3 or 4 in certain circumstances. Students planning travel to these regions will need to contact Safety Abroad to complete a Safety Planning Record.

Next, register for a Safety Abroad Workshop. These workshops, held online or in-person, are designed to help you think through various situations you might encounter while overseas. Considering these situations and how you might deal with them will help you prepare for your trip.

Third, you will need to acquire appropriate and sufficient travel health insurance. While you may have medical coverage in Canada, you likely will not have any coverage overseas. Health care costs can be extremely high overseas, so having the right health insurance for your trip is extremely important. You can find more information in the Health and Wellness section of this website.

Finally, add your trip information to the Safety Abroad Registry. This information allows us to record your travel dates and location so that we can offer support and emergency assistance.

If any of this information changes, make sure to contact Safety Abroad to keep us updated, so that we can better help you in case of emergencies.

After completing these steps, you are ready for your trip overseas! Just remember to keep Safety Abroad updated of any changes, and know who to contact in case of emergency.

Now that you know you’re traveling on university activity, it’s important to research the advisory level for the location to which you’re traveling. This will help guide what your next steps should be.

What are the Travel Advisories?

U of T refers to the Global Affairs Canada (GAC) Travel Advice and Advisories to assess the risks associated with a particular country. These Travel Advisories have four levels under which countries, and sometimes regions within countries, can fall:

Level 1

Exercise normal security precautions

Level 2

Exercise a high degree of caution

Level 3

Avoid non-essential travel*

Level 4

Avoid all travel*

Check the travel advisory level for your destination(s).

Are you traveling to a higher risk destination?

If the location to which you’re planning travel is considered Level 3 (Avoid non-essential travel) or Level 4 (Avoid all travel), this is considered higher risk travel. You may need to complete a Safety Planning Record and meet with the Safety Abroad Advisor.

*If you are planning to travel to one of these higher risk level regions, please contact as soon as possible to learn about these additional requirements

Updated Safety Abroad Workshop Launching January 11, 2024

The current version of the Safety Abroad Workshop will close on January 11, 2024. An updated version of the Safety Abroad Workshop will be launched on the same day.

If you have not yet completed the modules, you have until January 11th to complete them. If the modules are not completed by this date, your progress will not be saved. You will need to register and complete the updated version.

If you have completed or will complete the Safety Abroad Workshop before January 11th, please note that we will retain your completion records. Should you require confirmation of your completion status after January 11th, please feel free to reach out to us via email at

If you have any questions or concerns, please email

You must complete a Safety Abroad Workshop prior to your departure. Once complete, the Workshop is valid for 18 months.

What is the Safety Abroad Workshop?

The Safety Abroad Workshop is accessible online and in-person and covers topics such as health and wellness, personal safety, and intercultural awareness. The workshop is designed to help you identify and mitigate risks in your international destination. You must complete the workshop prior to your departure.

How do I register?

OnlineRegister here to access the workshops online through Quercus. You’ll be able to complete the modules at your own pace and even log back in if you want to review any material in the future.

In-Person: All in-person workshops are cancelled until further notice. Online workshops are still available.

If you have any questions about in-person workshops or in-person group presentations, please contact

Already completed a workshop?

If you completed a Safety Abroad Workshop in the last 1.5 years (perhaps for a previous university-related trip abroad), you will not need to complete another one! Not sure if your Workshop is still valid? Contact us.

If you will be travelling, make sure to contact your health insurance provider and check your coverage is activated.

Before you go, you will be asked to confirm you have secured appropriate and sufficient travel health insurance. You will also be asked for your travel health insurance information when adding your trip details to the Safety Abroad Registry.

Why do I need Travel Health Insurance?

Health care costs can be extremely high overseas, and your Canadian health insurance will likely only cover a small percentage, or nothing at all, of your costs. In order to avoid paying far more than expected for your trip, you will need travel health insurance.

How do I get Travel Health Insurance?

You may already have travel health insurance coverage through your student union!

Read more about how to check if you are covered, find out what is considered “appropriate and sufficient”, and learn more about what to consider when selecting travel health insurance on our Resources – Health & Wellness page.

Before you leave, you will need to register your travel in the Safety Abroad Registry.

What is the Safety Abroad Registry?

The Safety Abroad Registry allows U of T Safety Abroad to track your travel dates and location so that we can offer support and emergency assistance.

You need to complete a registration for each trip you go on. One trip can have multiple locations.

How can I add my information to the Safety Abroad Registry?

You can register here.* In order to register, have your emergency contact, health insurance, passport and local contact information ready.

Once you have registered, you will be asked to e-sign the Consent and Terms of Participation waivers.

*If you are unable to register your trip, please contact