Carnegie Mellon University
Foreign Travel

Foreign Travel: Know Before You Go

Faculty, researchers and staff travel to foreign countries frequently on behalf of their position at CMU and the Office of Research Integrity and Compliance (ORIC) would like to brief you on some important updates before you leave. Generally, there are no problems or delays associated with your travel to most countries.  However, due to heightened government security and export laws and regulations concerning university research and activities, we must demonstrate awareness at CMU for foreign travel risks when traveling on behalf of CMU. Please read the following and let ORIC know if you have any questions or concerns.

1) If you will be taking your laptop or other common electronic devices to a foreign country, please ensure that there is no encryption source code or technical know-how (e.g. designs, schematics, non-public technical data) on your computer, flash drive, blackberry, etc.  It is best to take a clean laptop and leave your unpublished research data at home or CMU.

2) If you will be carrying any other tangible items like equipment, samples, prototypes, etc., please complete the Foreign Travel Checklist[docx] and submit to for an export review. 

3) If you are traveling to any 'at risk' countries regardless of the research or activity, please contact the Export Compliance Group at for special guidance.  Embargoed countries will always require an export review and license prior to travel.  The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is responsible for administering and enforcing US economic and trade sanctions and embargoes that target specific geographic regions and governments. Please see the " Sanctions Programs and Country Information" page found on OFAC's website for more information on specific programs.

4) Additionally, some countries may have travel warnings issued by the Department of State with special instructions for Americans travelling to those countries.  Please use the Current Travel Warnings link so you will always have the most up to date information. Please feel free to contact ORIC for a travel briefing for high risk countries or any other concerns.  If you have trouble while you are abroad with foreign government export/import procedures or feel that your safety is at risk, please contact the Export Compliance Group at

5) If none of the above apply to your travel, no further action is required.  Bon Voyage!

If you require a travel letter, please contact ECG at