Indiana University international programs staff and faculty invest time and resources into study abroad trips, and most trips require a minimum number of students in order to cover the costs associated with study abroad programs. For example, it is necessary to have 12 students in a course in order for student fees to cover the salary to the faculty member who teaches the course. On many study abroad trips, students stay in two to four-person room accommodation. When fewer students than expected travel the cost per room go up. When international programs staff reserve group travel, the university is required to pay a per-seat fee based on the number of seats we had reserved. Once the planning for a trip has advanced to the point that we send a list of student travelers and their passport numbers to our travel agent, the airline then issues tickets in students’ names. At that point, we often can no longer get a refund for those tickets.
Having students cancel after planning has well advanced increases the costs for all students on study abroad trips. As a result, we have crafted a withdrawal policy that allows for some flexibility, but in general most students will be responsible for at minimum the deposit after the deposit due date.
For most trips, the initial deposit is due two weeks after the application deadline. This gives the Bursar a chance to enter students’ names in the IU system. During this period students can withdraw between the application due date and the deposit due date by emailing their trip leader or international programs. At this point, students can withdraw from a study abroad trip without penalty.
International Programs staff will work with students who experience serious illness, emergency, or a family or personal situation that prevents them from participating in a study abroad trip. Students who experience these kinds of events or changes will for the most part not be responsible for trip costs.
If you have any questions about the study abroad withdrawal policy, please contact director of international program Dr. Lisa Fetheringill Zwicker at firstname.lastname@example.org.