Independent Travel Policy

 (revised June 2021) 


Studying abroad with SIT is an intensive, immersive experience. Students should expect that most weekends will be occupied with homestay family interaction, homework, and planned program excursions. Accordingly, students who wish to engage in extensive independent travel should do so outside of the program’s defined enrollment period (e.g. before the program begins and/or after it ends).  During the program’s enrollment period, it is possible for students to engage in limited independent travel under the parameters detailed below.   


Independent travel is defined as travel within the host country* that:  

  • occurs during the program’s defined enrollment period;  
  • is independently organized by a student;  
  • is unrelated to program activities;  
  • does not interfere with scheduled program activities; and  
  • involves an overnight stay.    

*For purposes of independent travel, the countries within the European Schengen zone are considered “within the host country”


Independent travel requires prior written authorization* from the Academic Director who may restrict or deny authorization for the following reasons:  

  • specific safety/security concerns;  
  • unmanageable logistical issues; and  
  • the student is not in good academic standing.  

*Requests for independent travel shall be submitted to the Academic Director as soon as possible and no later than 72 hours prior to the requested departure; The Academic Director shall review the request with their SHSW Regional Manager


Once authorized by the Academic Director, students shall submit a Temporary Leave form that includes:  

  • a detailed itinerary (to include lodging contact information);  
  • mobile phone contact information; and  
  • names of travel companions and their mobile phone contact information.