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.
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.
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?
Does my host university have any clubs or organizations that support LGBTQIA+ students?
Will I need medication or services, such as transition care? If so, will my host country have them available?
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. For example, US citizens may now select the gender marker they would like printed on their U.S. passport without having to show medical documentation. 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 from the US Department of State
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.
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
Offers a database of scholarships for LGBTQIA+ students. The list contains 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 (“scholars”) 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
This 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 (firstname.lastname@example.org) is available as a resource to whom students can reach out to.