I am... LGBTQIA+ Identifying

As a student identifying as LGBTQIA+, we encourage you to learn more about varying levels of acceptance throughout the world along with travel and safety tips while studying abroad.

Country Specific Resources

Equaldex allows you to explore the progress of LGBTQIA+ rights across the world. Utilize their search feature to find out more about a location you’re interested in.

Global Gayz focuses on LGBTQIA+ travel worldwide and shares stories, news reports, and photos from a multitude of countries. Use their search bar to research a location you’re interested in.

Destination Pride, a data-driven search platform associated with PFLAG Canada that visualizes the world's LGBTQ+ laws, rights, and social sentiment.

ILGA World, a worldwide federation that produces an annual map showing sexual orientation laws from around the world, available in multiple languages.

The U.S. Department of State's LGBTQI+ Travelers page contains information on security for LGBTI travelers.

Tips for Choosing a Program

LGBTQIA+ rights and views vary per country. Just like in the US, even if a country has a wide legal acceptance of LGBTQIA+ individuals, a variety of people with differing opinions make up every culture and you should feel prepared to approach challenges that may arise. Take time to familiarize yourself with the laws and levels of acceptance in the locations you are interested in studying abroad.

Questions to Ask Yourself

What do I want to get out of my study abroad experience?

How will I find a community of LGBTQIA+ identifying individuals while abroad?

What are the acceptance levels, local laws, and customs regarding the LGBTQIA+ community in the location I am interested in?

Are there particular cultural norms or expected behaviors in this location?

What resources and support are available in the location I am interested in?

Are gender-inclusive housing options available in the program I am interested in?

Does my host university have any clubs or organizations that support LGBTQIA+ students?

Will I need medication or services for gender-affirming care? If so, are they available in my host country?

Travel & Safety

It is important that students feel safe and comfortable while studying abroad. Acceptance varies around the world and we encourage you to research the laws and customs affecting LGBTQIA+ identifying students in your host country before applying to a program. Be mindful that the places that you travel to outside of your host city/country might have different attitudes and policies, and it is important to be aware of those differences as you visit other places.

Transgender airport rights and safety in the US

Transgender students are encouraged to be familiar with TSA screening processes and their rights at the airport. More information can be found through the Transportation Security Administration and the National Center for Transgender Equality. Additionally, TSA Cares is available for more questions.

LGBTQIA+ travel abroad

The US Department of State has provided helpful tips and guidance and notes to consider for Before You Travel to help you prepare, and resources for support While you are Abroad.

When gender presentation is read as incongruous with a name or gender marker on travel documents, travelers often face increased scrutiny which may lead to stress and sometimes explicit denial of identity.


Important Considerations for Gender X Marker on US Passports

US citizens may now select the gender marker they would like printed on their U.S. passport without having to show medical documentation. U.S. citizens can select an X as their gender marker on their U.S. passport application. While the United States Government issues passports with the X gender marker, it cannot guarantee entry or transit through other countries. People with a X gender marker may face entry restrictions in countries that do not recognize the X gender marker.  Before you decide on a study abroad location, check with the foreign embassy or consulate in the United States for more information.


Gender-affirming care

Gender-affirming care may or may not be covered by travel insurance unless it is determined to be medically necessary care. It is important to understand what gender-affirming care services are available in your host country as you decide where to study abroad. Please speak with your Berkeley Study Abroad Adviser about how to access travel insurance information for your program so that you may better understand how to best prepare for the care you need while abroad.


Rainbow Scholarship
The NAFSA Rainbow Scholarship awards deserving lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQIA+) students who aim to participate in high-quality, rigorous education abroad programs. To be considered for the Rainbow Scholarship, applicants must self-identify on the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) scholarship application.

Human Rights Campaign
The Human Rights Campaign offers a database of scholarships for LGBTQIA+ students, including opportunities for both undergraduate and graduate students.

The Point Foundation National LGBTQIA+ Scholarship Fund
Point Foundation (Point) is the nation’s largest higher education scholarship-granting organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) students. Point’s multifaceted support of its scholarship recipients extends far beyond direct financial contribution toward the cost of their education. Each scholar is paired with a mentor and participates in leadership development programs and events.

See section 12 (page 15) of GoAbroad’s LGBT Travel Brochure for a list of additional scholarships that you might be eligible for.


UC Berkeley Gender Equity (GenEq) Center
The GenEq Center is UC Berkeley’s center for supporting LGBTQ+ students, staff, and faculty. In addition to the services and information provided by the GenEq Center, Director of LGBTQ+ Advancement and Equity Em C. Huang (em.huang@berkeley.edu) is available as a resource to whom students can reach out with any questions about their study abroad journey.

Transgender Legal Mapping Report

Map of Sexual Orientation Laws

Full Report of World Survey on Sexual Orientation Laws

LGBT Study Abroad Brochure

Exploring Your Identity Abroad Series: Navigating Gender Expression Abroad