Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Current Considerations for International Activities & Study Abroad

UCI, along with our study abroad partners, is following the situation in Gaza, West Bank, and Israel closely. We are also monitoring the ripple effects throughout the region and around the world.

Programs in 2023-2024:
Some programs abroad are currently running as planned while others have made changes with safety as the #1 priority. For example, the fall 2023 UCEAP program with the Rothberg School at Hebrew University in Jerusalem has gone to a hybrid remote format. It is too early to know what the state of courses will be for the spring ’24 semester, but that application window is now closed and participants will be notified directly by UCI and our program providers of changes.

Programs in 2024-2025:
For summer ’24 and beyond, it is too early to know what the conditions will be like and how this will impact current programming. UCI students thinking about study abroad in the region, for example Israel or Jordan, are advised to have an alternative program in mind in their first-choice program is cancelled or suspended.

Please connect with the UCI Study Abroad Center if you have any follow up questions or concerns.

UCI continues to actively monitor the evolving situation in Ukraine and eastern Europe. We remain in close communications with the UC Office of the President, UCEAP and colleagues throughout the UC system, as well as government and local contacts. At this time, no UCI programs have been canceled or suspended as a result of the Russian military invasion of Ukraine or worldwide responses to the ongoing military action in Ukraine.

In mid February, the U.S. State Department revised its travel advisory to U.S. citizens in Ukraine, Crimea, or Donetsk and Luhansk and last Friday, the UC Office of the President underscored this message by advising UC travelers to avoid all travel to Ukraine. While this advisory may not directly affect you, we encourage UCI travelers to prioritize their own health and safety while preparing for travel by considering the following:

  • Do not plan to travel to Ukraine, Belarus, or Russia before, during, or after your program in the spring or summer 2022 and the foreseeable future until the climate changes and these advisories change.
  • Stay up to date on news detailing Russia’s response as NATO countries, including the United States, impose sanctions on Russia. Restrictions on airspace may cause changes in flight routes and flight duration. Report on the possibility that Russia may conduct cyber attacks on NATO countries could temporarily disrupt access to media or finances.
  • Register your travel with the US State Department’s STEP Program to receive timely notifications of safety and security concerns.
  • Remember to have multiple ways to access your funds, including cash, in case of a disruption of your ATM banking services. If possible, keep between $100 in cash available, depending on where you are.
  • Download the WorldCue mobile app for smart devices (iOS and Android) to your smartphone. Included in your UC Travel Insurance, WorldCue connects UCI travelers to travel security updates and assistance pre-trip, on location, and in an emergency.
  • Continue to practice non-pharmaceutical interventions, such as masking and distancing, to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Many travel restrictions continue to be in force, which still determine how, when, and where we can travel.

Thank you for monitoring your email for further updates from UCI and your host institutions.

With the ending of U.S. federal and State of California emergency declarations regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, the Study Abroad Center has resumed international programming close to pre-pandemic levels with a renewed commitment to support the diverse health and safety needs of UCI students. We are in direct and regular communications with the UC Office of the President, the UC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP) and colleagues throughout the UC system, and consider U.S. State Department and CDC advisories and guidelines. For UCI updates, visit the UCI Study Abroad Center FAQ, Office of Global Engagement COVID-19 Updates, and UCI Student Health Center pages.

For more information about CDC Guidelines and Updates on COVID-19, please click here.

International Travel remains open to UCI students for 2023-24 academic year, barring current restrictions on travel to Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus. The Study Abroad Center continues to monitor responses to new COVID-19 variants as well as other public health concerns where UCI students might travel. We are in close communications with the UC Office of the President, UCEAP and colleagues throughout the UC system, as well as government and local contacts. Thank you for monitoring your email for further updates from UCI and your host institutions.

Here are some tips for responding to the changing situation while you are abroad:

  1. Continue to follow CDC prevention strategies, and local guidance in your host country, which may include a booster vaccination. UCI requires vaccination or exemption, and vaccines remain an important measure of protection.
  2. Double check your travel plans. If you were planning to travel outside your host country, we advise that you reconsider those plans in light of rapidly changing entry requirements or travel restrictions. The UC Travel Insurance provides some support for travelers who are required to isolate or quarantine due to a positive test. Stay in touch with friends and family, who may be concerned about your whereabouts and well-being.
  3. Finally, as protest events against government mandates continue, we encourage you to avoid such large gatherings. We also remind you to be vigilant for yourself and your companions to the potential for identity-based violence and xenophobia. In the event you or someone you know is the victim of violence, please reach out to someone responsible for your program or at UCI for assistance.

Independent International Activities

All UCI students seeking to travel abroad independently with UCI sponsorship or funding must receive advanced approval and risk review per UCI Student International Activities Policy & Procedure approved in January 2020. To begin this process, visit the Independent International Activities page.

UCI International Travel Policy

All UC travel suspensions related to COVID-19 were rescinded in April 2021; UCI student travel reverted back to the UCI policy on Student International Activities of January 2020.

We want to thank you again for your conscientious work in helping to safeguard the health and safety of the UCI community and our partners around the world during the UC systemwide travel suspension.

Preparing to Study Abroad

Click here for answers to the common UCEAP application questions.

Once you’ve been nominated to participate in your UCEAP program, be sure you complete all pre-departure requirements.

Please note that you are also responsible for maintaining all eligibility requirements through departure (e.g. GPA). If you fear a drop in GPA you should do what you can to keep your GPA up (e.g. attend tutoring, professor’s office hours, etc). If you fall below the requirements, you should inform your study abroad advisors right away.

UCEAP and the UCI Financial Aid Office have provided resources to help lead you and answer your questions regarding UCEAP 2021 finances abroad. Click below to find the presentation slides relevant to your concerns.

  • UCEAP programs do not have an application fee and program fees are due several months after applying.
  • Other UC Programs and Independent Programs vary. Some have non-refundable application fees. Check the program page for information.

Remember that you must request Campus Approval to participate on any global program.  If you cannot find your program in UCIAbroad, please email with these details so we can add it: Provider Name, Program Name, Program website URL, Term Abroad.

Once you’ve been selected to participate in your program, be sure you complete all pre-departure requirements.

Airline Ticket

After you have been accepted by your program and know your official start and end dates, confirm with your program to determine if you should buy your airline tickets independently or if they will be assisting you with this.

UC Central Travel and Student Universe travel agency

  1. Airfare options at discounted rates
  2. Ideal for individual students studying abroad as well as faculty members leading groups of students abroad
  3. Airfare Deposit program exclusive for UC students on financial aid
    1. Book airfare through an agent
    2. Pay a non-refundable deposit of $350
    3. Pay remaining balance 7 days prior to departure (your UCI financial aid should be disbursed to you by this time so you can use those funds to pay the balance)
  4. Note that the website indicates you must be under 26 but you can disregard that note when you are UC student

Applying for a Passport

All Students:

  • A valid passport is required for all participants. If you do not currently have a passport that is valid until at least six months after the end of your program, apply for one immediately.
  • The name on your passport should be the same name that appears on your study abroad program information. Ideally, it should also be the same as your name on your UCI records. You should not officially change your name in the middle of applying for or participating in your study abroad program.

U.S. Citizens:

  • Routine processing for a U.S. passport can take up to 14 weeks. You may visit the UCI Passport Office web site for more information on obtaining a passport.

Non-U.S. Citizens:

  • Non-U.S. citizens must obtain a passport from the embassy of your country of citizenship.

Applying for a Visa

U.S. Citizens:

  • If required, information on how to obtain a Student Visa for U.S. citizens should be provided to you by your study abroad program. If you are uncertain as to whether or not you need a visa, ask your study abroad program.

Non-U.S. Citizens:

  • Non-U.S. citizens should contact the consulate of your host country immediately to inquire as to the paperwork necessary to obtain a visa. Processing can take up to 6 months.


If any of your study abroad participation forms require your signature in the presence of a Notary Public, the on-campus UPS Store offers notary services.


If any of your study abroad forms or instructions require photos of you, you can obtain them at the UCI Passport Office or the following suggested places: U.S. Post Office at UTC (appointment required), local drugstores like CVS or RiteAid, or Costco (membership required).

Connect with others students who have either gone abroad in the past (returnees) or are international students happy to share from their own experiences.

If you would like to meet with an advisor prior to withdrawing to see if there is any way we can assist you, call 949-824-6343 to schedule an appointment.

If you are confident that you would like to withdraw, complete our Withdrawal Form prior to your program’s withdrawal deadline. Note: After the withdrawal deadline for your program, you will be liable for withdrawal fees.

UCI Matters

For details on how to get credit and fulfill degree requirements (major, minor and/or GE) while abroad, visit our Academics page.

Physics Series Abroad: There are 2 UCEAP summer programs that have been approved to fulfill the full, lower division physics series and labs. Click here for details if you wish to fulfill physics while abroad.

For details on financial aid and scholarships for study abroad, visit our Finances page.

Do NOT enroll in any classes at UCI for any quarter/s you will be abroad. Enrolling at UCI will cause issues with administrative and financial tasks that need to be done to your records.

Note for UCEAP participants: When you study abroad through UCEAP, you will pay UCEAP fees and enroll in UCEAP courses following the instructions provided to you in the UCEAP Portal. But, it’s important to note the following relate to your UCI records:

  • Each quarter prior to the fee payment deadline the Study Abroad Center will enroll you at UCI in a special 16-unit UCEAP placeholder course. This ensures that you retain your status at UCI, continue to be eligible to receive financial aid, and receive credit for your completed coursework upon return from UCEAP. The classes you actually take abroad will replace the UCEAP placeholder course once your UCEAP classes are reported to the UCI Registrar upon completion of your program. Final units and grades received while abroad on UCEAP will be posted to your UCI transcript within 90 days of your official program end date.
  • Do NOT apply to graduate for a term that is before the conclusion of your study abroad program.
  • DO NOT pay registration fees to UCI for any quarter(s) you will be on UCEAP. The Study Abroad Center will “pay” your UCI registration fees with a fee waiver approximately two weeks prior to the UCI fee payment deadline each quarter that you are abroad.]
  • DO pay any unpaid bills at UCI (library fines, lab fees, housing fees, USHIP Fee, etc). Check your Zot Account online before you go abroad to make sure you do not owe any money to UCI. Pay any outstanding fees to UCI, including USHIP if you do not typically waive out, before the fee payment deadline.
  • DO enroll in classes for the quarter you plan to return to UCI from abroad. You will need to access the Schedule of Classes (SOC) and enroll in classes via the UCI web site. You can view the SOC and find out when your enrollment window opens beginning 7th week, and registration begins 8th week of the preceding quarter. See the Registrar’s Course Enrollment web page for more details. Look at the Calendar to see when your enrollment window opens.
  • DO pay your fees to UCI for the quarter you plan to return to UCI by the fee payment deadline.

Note for Independent Program participants: When you participate on an Independent Program, you take a leave of absence from UCI so that you do not pay UCI tuition. This also means you cannot enroll on both the Independent Program and take UCI courses at the same time.

If you have questions about concurrently enrolling in a study abroad program and taking UCI courses at the same time, please see the table below.

Study Abroad Program Option

Concurrent Enrollment Policy



(in-person and virtual)
It is not recommended to concurrently enroll in UCI courses while studying abroad. It is possible to enroll in one course at UCI if it is absolutely necessary to meet your graduation requirements. Please contact your study abroad advisor for more information.


(in-person and virtual)
It is not recommended to concurrently enroll in UCI courses while studying abroad. It may be possible to enroll in one course at UCI if absolutely necessary to meet your graduation requirements or if your program dates don't conflict with UCI summer session dates. Please contact your study abroad advisor for more information.
Other UC Programs

(in-person and virtual)

Other UC Programs

(in-person and virtual)
While we do not recommend concurrently enrolling, please reach out to your Other UC program contacts for information on concurrent enrollment policies.
Independent Programs Study

(in-person and virtual)

Independent Programs Study


(in-person and virtual)

Independent Programs Non-Study
(in-person and virtual)
Students going on Independent Programs cannot concurrently enroll in their program and coursework at UCI.

Please reach out to if you have any questions about dual enrollment.

The UCI Residence Requirement states that students must take 36 of their final 45 units of work immediately preceding graduation in residence at UCI (See the UCI Catalog for details). The following is how the university residence requirement applies to students studying abroad. Note that this is distinct from any residency requirements your major or minor may have (see your Academic Counselor in the School of your Major for these details).


  • Students studying abroad on UCEAP are considered “in-residence”.
  • If you plan to study abroad the summer immediately following your senior year, you must postpone your official graduation date until the end of summer. Contact an Academic Counselor in the School of your major to see if it is still possible to participate in commencement ceremony prior to studying abroad.

Other UC Programs & Independent Programs Study Option:

  • Please keep in mind that grades can take 2-3 months to post after the program end date. Hence your transcripts will not be updated until then. The Study Abroad Center advisors can write a letter (for jobs, graduate schools, etc.) to explain why there is a delay. 


  • If you are a senior planning to graduate immediately after your time abroad, please be aware that your participation in the commencement ceremony will depend on your program end dates. Please check your program end dates to make sure they do not conflict.


This page contains both On-campus and Off-campus housing information for study-abroad students returning to UCI. The off-campus housing information is also useful for students who need to find someone to take their space in their UCI housing while they will be abroad.

On-Campus Housing

Information about on-campus housing – including descriptions, costs, and application procedures – can be found on the UCI Student Housing website.

NOTE: If a student has signed a contract for Arroyo Vista, Campus Village, Mesa Court, or Middle Earth and subsequently learns that he or she has been accepted for a UCEAP program, the student can cancel the contract without being subject to the contract cancellation fee as long as he or she has not yet moved in.  The student will need to show his/her UCEAP acceptance notification as proof. Students living in Vista del Campo, Vista del Campo Norte, Camino del Sol, or Puerta del Sol can sublease their room for the quarter they are away. Contact the housing office and ask to be put on their sublet list, and see the off-campus housing links below for additional ways to find someone to sublease.

Off-Campus Housing

Engage in an online seminar with UCI students studying abroad all over the world! Participating in this seminar will allow you to share and compare the experiences you are having abroad with others. See more information here.

Health, Safety Abroad, Diversity & Access

Your health & safety while abroad is very important. Please see our Health & Safety Abroad page for details.

We encourage you to think about your identity(ies) at home and how those might be perceived, challenged and/or strengthened while abroad. See our Diversity and Access page for details.