Virtual Travel Study Progams: FAQ

QuestionAnswer
What are virtual Travel Study programs?Virtual Travel Study programs are being developed as a way for students to be able to access our unique curriculum and still get a taste for the local culture and environment even in the event travel is suspended for summer 2021. In addition to enrolling in your same selected courses as you would during a traveling program, students will have access to additional interactive, cultural experiences that will enhance the overall experience beyond enrolling in online courses. Although the content will vary by program, here are a few examples: attending a virtual cooking demonstration to learn a local dish, networking with students from the city you are studying, attending a guest lecture from a local expert in the field you are studying, and more. Virtual program options are primarily intended to be a back-up plan in the event COVID-19 continues to impact international travel in summer 2021. Our goal is to allow them to serve as preparation for future participation in study abroad and to still allow you to receive an internationalized education experience during these challenging times.
Which Travel Study programs will have a virtual contingency option or be offered in a virtual-only format?Please see the individual program pages for confirmation as to whether a specific option has pivoted to a virtual alternative.
When will we know if our program will proceed with travel or pivot to a virtual format?Effective February 22, all in-person programs pivoted to a virtual format. Please see flyers on individual program pages for details.
What are the costs associated with the virtual option?Virtual program fees are approximately half the cost of the in-person fees. Details are available on the individual program pages.
Will my registration automatically switch into the virtual program if travel is suspended?Yes, all registered students will maintain their enrollment in the virtual option for a program if the travel component is suspended. Students will be informed by email as soon as decisions about their program are made– please make sure to continue monitoring the email account you used when you registered for the program.
What is the cancellation deadline for virtual programs?The student cancellation deadline will remain the same for all programs, whether traveling abroad or offered virtually. Wednesday, April 15, 2021 at 5:00pm is the deadline to withdraw from your program. After this deadline, students will be responsible for the full cost of the program even if they chose to withdraw later. This is also applicable to financial aid recipients–students will be responsible for their full program fee after the cancellation deadline and financial aid may be rescinded if you are not enrolled in any courses.
How will it be decided whether a program can travel or if it needs to pivot to a virtual option instead?
Travel Study will be monitoring a number of health and safety indicators including: U.S. State Department Travel Advisories, Center for Disease Control & Prevention Travel Health Notices, UC and UCLA travel policies for students, faculty, & staff, along with immigration and border control policies for the locations to which our programs intend to travel. Travel will be suspended in the event that any one of the following factors is present by early spring quarter:
1) US citizens are not permitted to enter the country in question
2) Local COVID-19 quarantine policies are prohibitively extensive and it is not possible for a short-term program to accommodate local restrictions
3) U.S. State Department Travel Advisories are at Level 4 for a particular location
4) University of California policies prohibit or limit nonessential travel to specified locations
Can I still use Financial Aid toward my program costs if the program pivots to a virtual option?UCLA students may use financial aid toward a UCLA Travel Study program even if it runs in a virtual format. Students from other campuses and universities should check with their home financial aid office for any restrictions.