Travel Insurance

All students travelling overseas on an approved RMIT program receive free basic travel insurance.

There are two requirements to access the insurance:

a/ students must be registered in Mobi
b/ students must register their travel itinerary in MyTrips

For WIL students that have applied through InPlace, this means that it is even more important that they follow the instructions of registering overseas activities in Mobi (see attached link). They will simply not be able to claim, if they are not registered.

This is a basic insurance that covers key items such as medical expenses, loss of baggage etc. However, it is a basic insurance and does not cover mobiles or tablets. Students are asked to familiarise themselves with the PDS and make sure the cover is right for them.

You can read more about the insurance at:

rmit.edu.au/students/travel-insurance

Student Resources

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When researching countries 

The Lonely Planet is a really good place to start researching any country.

As well as books (hard copy or e-books), Lonely Plant has guide apps and language tools.

But it is not the only place for information, and Lonely Plant is aimed at tourists, not those working in the country. Start with this, but please go deeper.

The Australian government Smart Traveller site has a general page on Living and Working Overseas that gives a good idea of the big issues for longer stays.

When researching cities

Past interns tell us that the best advice comes from students from that country, or people who have visited recently.

Ask around and be prepared to invest in a few cups of coffee for people with direct and recent experience to get the best low-down on your destination, and hopefully contacts for while you are away.

TripAdvisor has heaps of information of the tourist kind, good for making the most out of your weekends.

Language courses

Available online or in person. Check out if RMIT is running any suitable short courses. Often funding bodies organise some language education as part of their programs.
Embassies can be a good starting point to find some language instruction.

Flights

STA travel is designed to suit students and it may work out better to chat to one of their consultants about flight options, rather than risk a dodgy super-cheap deal online.

Travel Insurance

The university has requirements for your travel insurance policy.
Do not leave home without one!

Remember,  RMIT Global Mobility staff have heaps of experience with people just like you.

Where to go

As the saying goes, ‘the world is your oyster’. There are universities and employers and projects in almost every country in the world so you are limited only by your imagination, University schedule and, of course, money.

The Australian government is currently encouraging students to spend time in Asia but Europe and North America continue to be popular destinations. When you are considering which country to go to you may like to consider Asia because of the great opportunities that are available to Australians and the relatively low cost of living. Europe and North America are much more expensive and there are many more students seeking opportunities in these countries.

Financial assistance

There are often funds available to help students do internships abroad, but each funding system has its own peculiarities and paperwork, and the eligibility rules change often.

In some cases you may be able to add a big part of the cost of your international internship to your HECS bill, but you should talk to Global Mobility or your course coordinator about what is available.

If the funds come from the Australian Government, they almost always only allow for grants to Australian citizens regardless of enrolment at an Australian university.

RMIT financial assistance.

 

Centrelink Payments

If you normally receive Centrelink payments, then you will have to ensure you have done the  correct paperwork with them before you go away.

The  Australian Government payment eligibility rules change all the time, and it’s important that you take responsibility for ensuring you continue to be paid while you are abroad. For this to happen you may need a letter from the university which states that you are studying overseas for credit.

You can ask for the letter by contact Records Management Services at he.records@rmit.edu.au

Or you can access your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) through enrolment online. To view or print your CoE:
Log into myRMIT
Select the enrolment online link, then
select the My Student Record button
Under enrolment details, select View Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE)

Visas

Visa procedures change all the time, so you will need to check with the country’s embassy or website.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have a visa, if you need one, and that you make sure you have enough time to get it.

Remember, passport and visa requirements are subject to change and vary depending on the length of stay and visa type.

The International SOS website has information under each country listing.

Check with the embassy or consulate in your home country.

Passports must be valid for at least six months from the date of entry.

Contact your host

Once your internship is confirmed you can contact your host  in advance. Suggest that you “meet over Skype”.

Be prepared for that call, make sure you have researched the company and know who you are talking to (LinkedIn is a good place to look!)

Ask who will be supervising you. Ask any specific questions you have, such as what you should wear, what time to show up on day one, and what preparation do they want you to do in advance.

You could ask if there is accommodation nearby, but remember they are employers not travel agents!

If you have lots of “silly” questions then you could simply ring the receptionist and ask them – that’s always a good way to have a nice ally on the first day.

Health concerns

One thing that often concerns students thinking about going overseas is their health. It is important to be fit and healthy, if you want to manage the full range of activities available.

Students who have had a history of depression or other mental illnesses should carefully consider which country they are choosing to travel to, but more importantly discuss the plan with a doctor.

Travelling can be taxing physically and mentally, but this should not stop you from having this experience, if you and your doctor feel you are ready for it.

Similarly, people with a physical disability will find that some countries are easier to negotiate than others. Students need to do their research and get good advice from appropriately trained medical staff, family and carers.

General Health
Six weeks prior to departure you should seek information about any immunisations or health issues relevant to travelling and living in another country. Please refer to your own doctor for more information and consult Smart Traveller’s Health site.

The International SOS (ISOS) website has health information under each country listing.

Health and well being information is also provided in the pre-departure sessions run by the Education Abroad Office and Schools.

Your safety

We encourage you to take your own security seriously. Find accommodation in safe districts, do not expose yourself unnecessarily to harm, and make sure you research the country you are planning to intern in.

RMIT offers students an International SOS service when you have registered your trip.

International SOS (ISOS) is a provider of 24 hour medical and security advice and assistance for medical, security or other emergencies, for all authorised RMIT business travellers, including students.

Travellers should simply call ISOS – reverse charge, from anywhere in the world, for emergency assistance: +61 2 9372 2468. You can call ISOS before you travel to discuss your travel needs, security etc. If you need to make an insurance claim, ISOS can assist in contacting the university insurer.

If you do not register you trip then you are not covered by this importance service.

It is important you research and check the level of risk in the country and region you are interested in going to. It is always a good idea to register your travel with Smart Traveller, as well as ISOS.

If travel to your country of choice is not recommended by Smart Traveller you should consult your Program Coordinator to discuss alternative ways of gaining credit so that you do not suffer any academic penalty.

We also strongly urge students to register with the Australian embassy in the country in which they are interning.

You can find country and region risk level information here:

  • Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade – the Smart Traveller website provides up-to-date information about the risks you might face overseas, helping you to make well-informed decisions about whether, when and where to travel.

Depending on the circumstances, you may wish to contact your course coordinator directly  if you encounter any travel problems while overseas. Your coordinator can contact the Global Mobility Office on your behalf if necessary.

Featured Image: ** RCB ** via VisualHunt / CC BY

Money matters

Doing an internship can be costly. Not only are you not working in your ordinary job, you may be paying for accommodation and meals which you may not ordinarily do. Just getting to “work” can be expensive if you aren’t used to paying fares.

To make your international internship dream come true you need to factor in costs for:

  • Airfares
  • Passport
  • Visas
  • Accommodation
  • Travel and Health Insurance
  • Living Expenses: food, utilities, transport
  • Working equipment such as phones, data plans etc.

Even if you receive financial assistance, if you are planning to do an international internship you will need to budget carefully to ensure that you can afford to spend time away from home.

Costs vary depending on your destination. As a guide, it is recommended that you budget at least AU$2,000 for accommodation and living expenses for each month you will be away.

In preparing for your international internship you should:

  • Apply in a timely manner for any financial assistance available through RMIT (the pot does empty, so if you leave it too late you may miss out).
  • Make sure that any government benefits you receive normally will continue (you may need some paperwork from the university explaining why you are away).
  • You may be eligible to add some of the cost of your internship to your HECs debt, but rules change frequently and you will need to talk to Global Mobility about the latest information.
  • You maybe eligible for help from the RMIT Equity Travel Grant scheme.

Featured Image: kawaiikiri via Visual Hunt / CC BY-SA