Global Safety FAQ

This page contains questions Global Safety frequently receives. Please review this page for assistance with the Global Safety Network (formerly the Travel Safety Network, or TSN) and other Global Safety matters.

What is the turnaround time, after I have put in a GSN record, for my receipt?

  • On average, restricted travel review takes at least two weeks and non-restricted reviews take a full business week. Travelers are strongly encouraged to enter their travel into the GSN at least 30 days in advance to prevent stress over receiving their GSN receipts, especially during peak travel periods.

How do I know if the country I wish to travel to is on the university’s restricted list?

  • Information on the university’s restricted travel list can be found here. Note restricted does not mean prohibited.

How do I create an individual GSN record?

  • Please log in to using the PSU login button. Your profile will be created using your Penn State SSO information. If you have questions while creating the trip record, please contact If you do not have a Penn State Access ID, please contact Global Safety.

How do I create a group travel record?

I am a faculty leader taking my class abroad. Do I need to fill out a GSN record?

No, GSN records for student groups are only for non-credit purposes. All for-credit course programs abroad are captured through Education Abroad.​

What should I do if I receive both student and faculty forms while creating my GSN record?

How do I know if I need to record my travel with Penn State?

  • Any travel paid for by the University or completed within the context of employment with the University should be recorded. This includes travel to conferences, meetings, guest lecture opportunities, as well as research funded, facilitated, or supported by the University. Other examples include travel to participate in performances, competitions, co-curricular activities, etc. by or with a student organization or group. This also includes travel for sponsored projects. Traveling for Penn State business does not include exclusively personal travel, private consulting opportunities, or visa renewal. Please consult with your department and Global Safety if you are planning to work remotely from an international location.

Do I need to record my domestic travel in the GSN?

  • Only trips outside of the United States (including all 50 states and its territories, such as Puerto Rico and Guam), should be documented in the GSN. Trips tp Canada and Mexico MUST be recorded in the GSN. If your international trip contains a domestic layover, that can be included in the record.

Can I enter partial trip information?

  • Yes. Enter as much information as you have for a given trip; save it and return to update it later. Click on “Submit” once all your information on a given form is completed. You will not be able to edit submitted forms. If you need to update information that has been submitted please contact Global Safety ( with the updated information.

I’m traveling on sabbatical, do I need a GSN record?

  • Yes, sabbatical travel is viewed as university-affiliated travel unless it is for personal reasons. Your initial trip should be entered into the GSN, and any updates emailed to Global Safety (

Can I travel without university approval?

  • Yes, however only travel with a GSN confirmation receipt will be reimbursed.

I traveled on a group trip, how do I get my receipt?

  • Your group leader will be sent a receipt for the group that can be distributed amongst the participants.

How do I know if my travel constitutes group travel?

  • In general, faculty, staff, and graduate assistants planning a trip with more than 2 undergraduate students should contact Global Safety ( regarding steps for the group travel process. If you are unsure if you fall into this category, please contact Global Safety.

My parents have concerns about my safety while studying abroad. Who should they contact?

  • We encourage students to communicate directly with family members. However, in an emergency or crisis the GSN staff will use their best judgment in informing parents, respecting all privacy laws.