Student Process

All students traveling abroad in connection with their University of Minnesota studies are required to obtain international health, security, medical, and evacuation insurance approved by the University’s Office of Risk Management. 

Who Must Obtain Insurance?

University-issued international insurance, with coverage by Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI), is mandatory for the following: 

  • All students* participating in credit-bearing programs (e.g., study abroad, internships abroad for credit) 
  • All students* participating in sponsored or co-sponsored non-credit bearing experiential programs (e.g., work, intern, research, volunteer, conference, workshop, athletics, and University Campus Life Programs abroad) 
  • All students* traveling as part of a group with other UMN students, faculty or staff 
  • All students approved for travel by the International Travel Risk Assessment and Advisory Committee (ITRAAC) 
  • All students* traveling to Cuba for University purposes
  • All recent graduates—for up to one term after graduation—participating in University of Minnesota sponsored or co-sponsored credit and non-credit programs

Opting out: Students participating in Registered Student Organization (RSO) activities abroad may opt-out of mandatory purchasing of CISI per Office of General Counsel and Office of Risk Management. These travelers can still purchase CISI insurance, but it is not required. Qualified individuals who choose to opt-out are still required to complete the international travel registration. 

Insurance coverage is provided for the duration of the program or activity dates, plus an allowance before and after to cover travel. The University's policy with CISI insurance does not cover personal or non-University travel.

*CISI is unable to provide insurance for international students who are traveling in their country of citizenship. We recommend these travelers secure other insurance options such as personal family coverage, possible home country national insurance plans for which the student remains eligible, or independent coverage.

Student Insurance Process


Students must purchase or opt out of CISI insurance within the international travel registration system. Students are required to register their travel regardless of insurance decisions or needs. 

  1. Log in to the Student International Travel Registry system. 
  2. Complete the Personal InformationTravel Plans, and Emergency Contact Information.
  3. Select Purchase CISI International Insurance or Opt out of CISI International Insurance.
  4. Provide your Payment Information (unless you are opting out).
  5. If applying for dependents, a spouse, or domestic partner's insurance, the application and payment must be sent directly to CISI.

Note: The U.S. territories of Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and Guam, and the U.S. minor outlying islands will be treated as international locations for the purposes of CISI insurance.

Retain Your U.S. Health Insurance While Abroad

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), people residing in the U.S. will be required to obtain health insurance.  In addition, the University of Minnesota requires students who are admitted to a degree program and registered for six or more credits per semester to have U.S. health insurance coverage. This University requirement applies even while students are participating in education abroad opportunities.

CISI insurance does not qualify as U.S. health insurance because the coverage begins when you leave the U.S. and ends upon your return to the U.S.  As a result, you must retain your U.S. insurance during your time abroad to cover you before and after your program or activities abroad. The University of Minnesota does not verify U.S. health insurance enrollment, so it is each student’s responsibility to understand the ACA and University requirements and to retain their U.S. health insurance even while traveling abroad. 

NoteIf you study abroad through a program provided by the Education Abroad Office and you have coverage through the University of Minnesota’s Student Health Benefit Plan (SHBP) for the semester prior to their term overseas, you will automatically be enrolled for the time you'll be abroad. Contact the Office of Student Health Benefits with any questions at 612-624-0627, 1-800-232-9017 or