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  • Before you depart minus-thick plus-thick

    When do I need to arrange my flights?

    In most cases it is your responsibility to organise and pay for your flights for your experience. Generally, we recommend that you do not pay for flights or any other travel costs until you have received your host acceptance and are sure of your participation, including receiving any necessary visas. Flights and travel in relation to UniSA-led study tours will be booked for you as a group and your tour leader will provide details on this.  As a member of The Global Society, you are eligible to layby your flight with STA Travel for a small fee.

    Do I need to advise anyone of my travel plans?

    For both full semester and short term students, you MUST notify us of your travel plans and itinerary as part of the application process. We’ll tell you more about this after you apply or register your experience with us.

    Even if you’re not planning on getting credit for your short term program, it is very important that you register your travel with UniSA.

    Do I need to organise my own accommodation?

    Full semester

    Each partner university has their own accommodation situation. Some hosts may require you to stay in student accommodation during your exchange, whereas others might assist you in finding private accommodation. Check out the partner university’s page for more information.


    Short term

    Depending upon your exact short term program, the accommodation situation will vary. Some short term hosts may require you to stay in student accommodation during your time overseas, whereas others might assist you in finding private accommodation. Study tours and some Third Party Providers may have accommodation organised as part of the program. Check out host organisation/provider website of your short term experience for what they offer.

    Should I meet with a Doctor prior to travelling?

    We suggest that you meet with your GP prior to departure to ensure that you are up to date with any regular prescription medication and an overall health check to travel. They may also recommend specific vaccinations for your destination. Sometimes evidence of vaccinations, or of specific health checks, can be a requirement for travel to/from specific countries or enrollment at specific partners. If you are receiving your prescription medication in bulk, please ensure that you ask your GP for a letter stating that they have provided you with your medication for your trip. Regular prescription medicines should be kept in their original containers with clear labels and carried in your hand luggage. Ensure your doctor’s letter states the names of the medicines, the dose, and that they are for your personal use, plus a copy of your prescriptions written using the generic name of the drug to avoid confusion with trade names in foreign countries.

    Does the university cover me for travel insurance?

    Generally you’ll be covered by UniSA’s travel insurance. After you’re accepted into UniSA’s exchange program, we’ll run you through the details on this. For short term students, you will receive emails with more information on this during your application process. You can also contact the insurance team directly or see their website here. You may need to check your coverage eligibility with the insurance team, if:

    •  Your trip exceeds 270 days;
    • You are over 75;
    • You have an existing medical condition which could possibly require treatment or medication while travelling; and/or
    • You are undertaking an internship/placement or paid work overseas.
  • Passport and Visa minus-thick plus-thick

    What are the passport requirements?

    Please ensure that your passport is up to date and has at least 6 months validity on it after your return date from your travel destination. However, research the requirements of the country you are visiting, as there may be varying rules. China and various other countries requires that your passport has at least 12 months validity on it after your return date from your travel.

    Do I need to apply for a visa for my study overseas program?

    Should you require a visa for your overseas study, please ensure that you apply for it with considerable amount of lead time prior to your travel departure date. It is your responsibility to apply for your visa. You can refer to the relevant Consulate regarding a specific countries visa requirements. UniSA is unable to provide specific visa advice. 

    Some things to consider when applying for your visa and travels:

    • ensure that you have at least 6 months on your passport after your return
    • provide your travel itinerary (accommodation and flight details)
    • if you are an international student please ensure that there are no breaches to your current visa in Australia by applying for another visa to study elsewhere

    Visas Direct is a visa processing company which we suggest you may use to make your visa application process a bit easier for you: visadirect.com.au

    Do I need to register with the Australian Government Smart Traveller?

    It is your responsibility to subscribe to the Smart Traveller service, UniSA strongly suggests that you do this prior to your trip. Smart Traveller will keep you updated with travel advisories and warnings, as well as with critical alerts. You can manage your preferences for this when you subscribe.

  • On your trip minus-thick plus-thick

    What documents should I take with me overseas?

    Pack all your important documents with duplicate copies – this would include items such as your passport, flight itinerary, host university documents, IDs, credit card(s), travel cards, and emergency contact cards. It is also a good idea to have a copy of these saved to your Dropbox, iCloud, Google Drive, or similar, so that you can access them at all times.

    What should I do for currency?

    Make sure you have some cash in the correct currency before you leave. You should also look into exchange rate fees on your bank cards, and the various means of money i.e. cash passport, ATM card and cash. Look up what is used the host country, as some places might not have paywave and rely instead on cash. You may have the opportunity to stop and exchange money at the airport, but please do not rely on this. Make sure to contact your bank to advise them of your travels and that you will be using your bank card in another country other than Australia during this time.

    What should I do in an overseas emergency?

    Remember you are responsible for your own health and safety while overseas. Do everything you can to establish safe behaviour patterns and be aware of circumstances that may lead to danger and avoid them. Make sure you take the advice of your host university/short term provider about local safety issues and do some of your own research into venues or places that are dangerous or unsafe, as well as local tips on social customs and other issues that could lead to problems.

    The University has partnered with International SOS to offer our staff and students medical, safety and security advice, referrals, emotional support, routine and emergency assistance when travelling or living abroad.

    International SOS can be contacted from anywhere in the world (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). Call or go online: +61 2 9372 2468 (you can contact the local operator and request a reverse-charge call).

    Website: www.internationalsos.com 
    University member number: 12AYCA773040, or download the Assistance App.
    See here for more info.

    What if I get homesick while I'm overseas?

    It is normal to feel different or homesick whilst overseas, and many students find themselves experiencing this. Please ensure that you prepare yourself before the trip e.g. take some treats or mementos from home, arrange ways to speak to your family and friends back home regularly, try to make connections in your exchange location. Our student mobility partner, The Global Society, also provides resources regarding culture shock which can be useful. We will provide more information on support services while you’re abroad as well. 

    What support can I access from UniSA while travelling?

    Please ensure that you advise the Study Overseas office if you require support for any reason, from your academic studies to personal reasons, by emailing your academic studies to personal reasons by emailing student.exchange@unisa.edu.au (full semester) or short.programs@unisa.edu.au (short term programs). As you remain a UniSA student whilst you are overseas you still have access to all support facilities from afar. Please visit our counselling website for more information.

    We are also partnered with International SOS, the world's largest medical and travel security services firm. ISOS offers support and advice to students in every country, and through UniSA you receive free membership. Their website can access information on everything from vaccinations to transportation tips to cultural tips, as well as providing health/safety support and emergency assistance.

    As well as the above, UniSA is partnered with the Global Society. TGS is a free resource for UniSA students which provides guides on many exchange and travel matters, but also lets you contact previous/current/future exchange students from both UniSA and other universities.

  • Academic minus-thick plus-thick

    How do I work out how many units overseas courses are equivalent to at UniSA?

    Full semester

    You can view a list of all our partner university course equivalencies at our UniSA Credit Equivalencies Table. Please be sure to discuss your credit plans with your Program Director. Should you have to change courses while overseas, you’ll need to get PD approval for those changes, and loop in the Study Overseas team for all decisions.


    Short term

    Most short term programs count for 4.5 units (one course), but some may be equivalent to more. Check out the Credit Equivalencies Table for various conversion rates, which will help you work out how your study overseas equates to at home. Please be sure to discuss your credit plans with your Program Director before applying. Should you have to change your courses while overseas, you’ll need to get PD approval for those changes, and loop in the Study Overseas team for all decisions.

    What if I need to withdraw from the overseas program?

    You must notify us immediately if your plans change at any point and you will no longer participate in the nominated overseas program. If you do not complete the nominated program you will be required to refund your Travel Grant payment, unless exceptional circumstances can be demonstrated. Failure to do so may result in you being placed in Bad Financial Standing and/or other serious consequences.

    How do I apply for credit upon my return?

    Full semester and short term exchange students are enrolled at UniSA for the duration of their overseas study. Upon return, you will need to provide your transcript from the host university, and complete the Returned Student Report. Once these tasks are completed, the Study Overseas team will process your exchange grade. Please note the grade for exchange will be either Non-Graded Pass or Fail.

    Short term students (excluding short term exchange) Credit for short term students (excluding short term exchange) can be processed differently depending on the experience. In many cases, you are approved for credit before you go, but aren't actually enrolled at UniSA for your overseas program. Credit transfer then occurs after the overseas program is completed. More details on these processes are provided throughout the process.

  • Funding minus-thick plus-thick

    How do I apply for the UniSA Travel Grants?

    When you submit your application for exchange or apply/register for a short-term experience you will be assessed at the same time for your grant eligibility. You do not need to submit a separate application to be considered for the UniSA Travel Grant when they are available.

    Are there any other travel grants or scholarships available to me?

    There are a few more funding options besides the UniSA International travel grant. If you are a UniSA Business Student, please visit the Business Website to find out more information about their competitive grants. Students going to Asia and the Indo-Pacific region may be eligible for New Colombo Plan grants, should they be available. Check out the Funding and Scholarships page for more opportunities and information.

    Do I need to advise Centrelink of my overseas study?

    If you currently receive payments from Centrelink, it may be possible to continue receiving payments while you are studying overseas. You will need to notify Centrelink that you will be studying overseas and submit the required paperwork. As part of your application, we can provide you with a letter to support this. If you have questions or are unsure of your eligibility find out more by contacting Centrelink directly.

  • Other common questions minus-thick plus-thick

    Can I talk with other students who have previously gone on overseas study programs?

    You can read reports from past students here: returned student reports. Upon request, we may also be able to put you in contact with previous students, however this is entirely up to the returned student.

    How can I share my experience with other students?

    UniSA Study Overseas has an Instagram page that you can tag us in so we can keep in touch with your travels. Our Instagram tag is @unisaoverseas

    Also you are able to visit the Global Society website which UniSA students are members of where you can share or gain insights into your exchange from other students. Please visit their website for more information: www.globalsociety.com.au

    Upon return, we may contact you to assist with our events/marketing. Please note that it is a condition of the travel grant that you participate in these as requested.