International Travel


There are many federal regulations that have an impact on travel outside the continental United States (OCONUS). A wide range of resources are available to make traveling outside the United States more safe and uneventful and assist in avoiding health related issues.

  • State Department International Travel Guidelines - Provides extensive information relative to traveling outside the continental United States, including, but not limited to, travel advisories for areas where there is civil unrest and possible threats to Americans traveling abroad.
  • If you're traveling with students or alone, you'll need to familiarize yourself with GW's faculty and staff international travel policies.
  • Travel with Laptops and Other Electronic Devices - If employees are traveling internationally with laptops, it is important that they review Travel with Laptops and Other Electronic Devices in GW's International Travel Approval Policy to be certain they are aware of any regulations applying to the type of information they are transporting in and out of the country.
  • Center for Disease Control Travel Information - Provides extensive information regarding health related issues outside the United States and precautions that should be taken when traveling to areas of concern.

Employees traveling on federal funds are required by 49 U.S.C. 40118, commonly referred to as the "Fly America Act," to use United States air carrier service for all air travel and cargo transportation services funded by the United States Government. One major exception to this act is the option to utilize a code-share carrier referring to a foreign carrier flight that is being operated by an American flag carrier. In these instances, the reservation will reflect the code of the American flag carrier and its flight number. 

There are a number of exceptions to the Fly America Act that are outlined in the Fly America Act Exception Form (PDF). Included in these exceptions are the four bilateral/multilateral “Open Skies Agreements” established by the federal government. For a better understanding of the Open Skies Agreement and its application to Fly America flights, please see the GW Fly America Act Open Skies Guidance (PDF) for definitions and examples of its application. In order to be granted an exception, the Fly America Act Exception Form (PDF) must be completed, signed by the traveler and sent to the GW Travel Office at [email protected] prior to travel being ticketed. Be sure to include all supporting documentation that justifies the exception request. Once approved, the form should be submitted with the traveler’s expense reconciliation receipts in iBuy+ Expense Reporting.

Global Entry Program - Global Entry is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States. Though intended for frequent international travelers, there is no minimum number of trips necessary to qualify for the program. Participants may enter the United States by using automated kiosks located at select airports. Apply Today!

GeoBlue (formerly HTH Worldwide) provides a continuum of services as listed below helping GW Members traveling abroad with both urgent and emergent non-medical and medical issues. GeoBlue responds by helping Members access quality services. Complete services provided to GW travelers can be found at the Risk Management website.

All members of the GW community traveling abroad on university business must register with GeoBlue prior to departure. GeoBlue provides important information about your destination.


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