Fall 2019 Voyage Prep

FA19 Voyage Demographics


FA19 Passport Requirements

Passport Requirements 101
Fall 2019 Voyage

Your passport must be valid until June 24, 2020which is six months after the voyage end date.



PassportsObtaining Your Passport

You can find information regarding first time passport applications here or through our visa partner Travisa – CIBT here. Please note that this process can take up to six weeks and should be started immediately upon placing your voyage deposit. Using Travisa – CIBT for your passport application/renewal will expedite the process considerably. If your passport is expired or due to expire, or you lack adequate blank pages (see below), you will need to renew your passport immediately and can use the same link(s) as above.

Those voyagers that are applying for a first time passport or who need a passport renewal are encouraged to check the box for a “Large Book (Non-Standard)” in order to obtain a larger, 52 page passport. It is at the discretion of the U.S. State Department to issue large passports, and SAS cannot guarantee that a request for one will be granted. We do, however, recommend trying for a larger passport because we know that our alumni only continue to travel the world after their voyage!

Blank Visa Page Requirements

All participants will be required to obtain visas in order to sail on a Semester at Sea voyage. Visa instructions and requirements are released approximately 4 months prior to embarkation. Each voyager is responsible for their own remaining, blank visa pages in their passport, such that these entry requirements will be met in each sequential port of call. Semester at Sea cannot predict or be held responsible for how local immigration officials will stamp each individual passport. Please see below to determine if you have sufficient blank visa pages for your voyage or if you will need to renew your passport.


FA19 Blank Visa Page Requirement

Total Number of Blank Visa Pages Required**14 Page


U.S. Passport*

Netherlands1 Page
Poland1 Page
Portugal1 Page
Spain1 Page
Croatia1 Page
Morocco1 Page
Ghana2 Consecutive Adjacent Pages
Brazil2 Consecutive Adjacent Pages
Trinidad & Tobago1 Page
Ecuador1 Page
Costa Rica1 Page
United States1 Page


*Non-U.S. passport holders will need to budget an extra blank visa page within their passport for each additional visa that is required for their nationality.

**Passport pages reserved for Amendments and Endorsements cannot be used for visas.

***This blank visa page count will increase if a voyage participant intends to register for Field Programs which take them outside the country of port. Each voyage participant is responsible for including for these blank visa pages in their overall count. Voyage participants are not permitted to travel outside of the port country independently.

Passport pages reserved for Amendments and Endorsements cannot be used for visas.

On the left is an example of a blank visa page – count these to come up with your overall blank pages count. On the right is an example of an Endorsement page – these pages cannot be used for visas and should not be counted when determining how many blank visa pages are in your passport.

Field Programs

The passport number entered into the MyVoyage portal is the number used to book all Field Programs and create all visa documents. This number must match the passport the participant will use during travel. Participants must promptly update this number if obtaining a new passport. Using incorrect passport information could result in the participant having to pay change fees or could result in the ability to board flights/ trains, etc. and inability to participate in the program. The Field Office is not responsible for inaccurate reservations as a result of passport information that is incorrectly entered into MyVoyage. The participant is responsible for any fees or cancellation penalties administered as a result of incorrect or outdated information.


All voyagers will require visas in order to sail. These requirements are specific to your nationality. Visa applications cannot be lodged until your passport is obtained. Visa documents are generated based on the passport information which is entered into your MyVoyage Portal. If you renew your passport, you must promptly update this information in MyVoyage. Further visa information and instructions will be released in early May 2019. Please do not apply for visas prior to this date.

If you have any questions about passport requirements, please contact programadministration@isevoyages.org.

FA19 Travel to the Ship – Students & Lifelong Learners

Travel to the Ship – Students and Lifelong Learners

Voyage Departure – Monday, September 9, 2019 

The MV World Odyssey will dock at the Passenger Terminal Amsterdam, located approximately 18-20 minutes by car or metro north of Amsterdam Airport (Amsterdam Airport Schiphol; AMS).

Name of Port: Port of Amsterdam
Berth: Passenger Terminal

Departure Flight

Check-in on embarkation day will begin as early as 0800. Due to the early start we strongly recommend that you arrive in Amsterdam between September 7-8 in order to account for potential flight delays and/or baggage issues. The ship will not delay departure to wait for late-arriving participants.

Hotel Accommodations in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Semester at Sea has two dedicated room blocks from September 6 -9, 2019 at the Amsterdam Marriott Hotel and the Renaissance Amsterdam Hotel.  Make reservations  online using the links provided above. Participants must reserve a room by July 26  in order to obtain the discounted rate.

Embarkation Day Check-In

Voyagers will be assigned check-in times between 0900 and 1230 for the morning of September 9, 2019. Student Assistants will board the ship on September 8, the day before embarkation for orientation and training.  

Please note that family members and other non-sailing guests are not permitted beyond port security and are not allowed on the ship.


Voyage Return – Monday, December 23, 2019 

The MV World Odyssey will dock at the Port of San Diego, located approximately 3 miles from San Diego International Airport (SAN). Expected arrival time to the pier is 0800 on Sunday, December 23, 2019.


Name of Port: Port of San Diego
Address of Port: N Harbor Drive & West Broadway, San Diego
Berth: B Street Pier


Return Flight

Book your return flight from San Diego, CA AFTER 1700 on December 23, 2019. Although the ship will arrive to San Diego at 0800 on December 23 each passenger must go through United States customs and immigration upon arrival before anyone can disembark from the ship. Timelines for this process are out of Semester at Sea’s control and can take several hours. Disembarkation order for passengers will be determined and announced onboard the ship towards the end of the voyage and no early disembarkation exceptions will be allowed for individuals who choose to book a flight prior to 1700 on December 23.

Debarkation Day Transportation & Accommodations

Taxis will be plentiful and available immediately outside the ship terminal for those travelling to the airport or other destinations. For those travelling regionally, Union Station (also known as the Santa Fe Depot), San Diego’s main downtown train station, will be located across the street from the cruise ship terminal. Amtrak service and routes are available from Union Station. Voyagers should NOT book train service prior to the mid-afternoon hours of December 23. For those requiring hotel stay in the San Diego area, please see hotel recommendations provided by the San Diego Board of Tourism

Left Luggage

If any participant forgets luggage at the port of disembarkation, Semester at Sea will attempt to ship the luggage to the participant’s address listed on their luggage using the organizations partner LuggageFree. If there is no address listed on the luggage, the property will be sent to the ISE home office in Ft. Collins, CO where staff will contact the owner of the left luggage. Participants are responsible for all shipping fees associated with left luggage.

If you have any questions as you finalize your preparations for sailing, please contact our office at 1.800.854.0195 or operations@semesteratsea.org.

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FA19 Medical Requirements

Medical History Form

All participants must be medically approved to sail prior to embarkation. You will not be allowed to board the ship without medical approval. All confirmed voyagers will receive the Medical History form along with detailed instructions on how to submit the form via email in April 2019. This form will also be available via MyVoyage.

Medical History Form Deadlines

  • Faculty, Staff and Dependents –  June 1, 2019
  • Students and Lifelong Learners –  July 1, 2019

Malaria Prophylaxis

The Fall 2019 voyage will be entering areas where malaria is likely to be present which could present health risks for you. Be sure to talk with your physician regarding malaria prophylaxis and make sure you bring adequate medication with you. The CDC publishes recommendations you can review with your physician. Please also review the Semester at Sea Travel Medical Concerns document developed specifically for your voyage.

CDC and international health requirements strongly suggest malaria prophylaxis. The spring voyage will be entering areas where malaria is likely to be present, which could present health risks for you. Malaria prevention should be discussed with your physician based on the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) requirements and recommendations. Make sure you bring adequate medication with you as malarial drugs are not available onboard except for emergencies.

Exposure will vary for each participant depending upon individual travel plans. Having an idea of what regions you plan to visit and how far you plan to travel outside the port city will greatly help your physician provide accurate medical advice concerning vaccinations and disease risk.

In general, we also recommend that you contact the CDC and/or your physician to learn the current recommendations for immunizations in the countries you will visit. Be advised that inoculation requirements may be imposed at any time by the governments of countries on our itinerary. The Institute for Shipboard Education (ISE) cannot advise regarding the prescription of inoculations or be held responsible for unannounced health requirement changes.  

Yellow Fever Immunization

The Yellow Fever Vaccination is required for entry into Ghana during your voyage. You must bring your signed, original Yellow Fever Card (International Certification of Vaccination or Prophylaxis ICVP) with you to the ship, as you will not be able to board the ship without it. If you are not able to receive the yellow fever vaccination for medical reasons, this exemption must be documented in your medical health form and the Medical Contraindication section of the Yellow Fever Card should also be completed. Not having the vaccination could restrict your ability to leave the ship in some countries. Note: To find a clinic that is approved to provide Yellow Fever vaccine, please visit the CDC website: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellow-fever-vaccination-clinics/search/.  

Unfortunately, there has recently been a shortage of Yellow Fever vaccine & there are only a small number of clinics that have been designated to dispense the vaccine. Stamaril is an accepted alternative to the Yellow Fever vaccine. Clinics that provide Stamaril can be found on the CDC link above. You will receive the yellow fever card as documentation & this is a legal document—treat it as carefully as you do your passport!

As some clinics will not give the Yellow Fever vaccine until closer to your date of departure, you may be unable to complete this vaccination prior to the deadline for the medical history form. Please schedule an appointment for the Yellow Fever vaccine and note this date on your medical history form. Please schedule this appointment as soon as possible as you will not be able to board without the Yellow Fever Card.

Foreign Travel Health Information

The CDC has health information and recommendations for foreign travel that is available 24 hours a day with the use of a touch tone phone by calling 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747). Callers may select any one or all of the informational messages by following the instructions which are given. The information will be updated as needed.  

Similar health advisory information is available on the CDC Traveler’s Health Information Page.

Comprehensive Travel Health Insurance

All voyage participants are enrolled in a World Class Coverage Plan through Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI), a world leader in travel insurance. This plan is included as part of participant program fees, and is in effect upon arrival to the ship through disembarkation at the end of the voyage. Please click here for detailed policy information.

Health Clinic/Counseling Office

All visits to the shipboard medical clinic and counseling office during clinic hours are included in your program fees. Should a participant require medication (e.g. prescription or otherwise) and/or medical-related services (e.g. x-rays, casting, sutures, blood work, etc.), a nominal fee will be billed to the participant’s shipboard account. Participants taking prescription medication should plan to bring a sufficient supply to last the duration of the semester and make sure their personal primary care physician notes the prescription on their medical history form.


All medical information is current as of this writing – any changes in health requirements will be communicated to participants.

FA19 Visa Requirements

Fall 2019 Visa Requirements

This information below contains extremely important information regarding visas for the Spring 2019 Voyage. It is crucial that all voyagers read this section thoroughly and any linked information in its entirety.

International passport holders will have different or additional visa requirements. If you are a non-US Passport holder, you will receive a separate e-mail with visa instructions.


Jump to a Section

Important Documents to Review

What are Visas?
Visa Requirements
Important Information Guide
Tavisa – CIBT Visa Service
FA19 Passport Requirements
FA19 Visa Checklist and Deadlines
FA19 Visa Checklist
Step-by Step Visa Video
Visa Copies
Passport Copies & Blank Visa Pages
Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
Additional Requirements for Minors

What are Visas?

Visas are travel documents placed in the traveler’s passport that proves the traveler is allowed entry to a specific country for a specific period of time. It is every participant’s responsibility to obtain all pre-voyage required visas prior to embarkation. Visa regulations are subject to change and ISE cannot be held responsible for incurred fees, fines, detainment or deportation due to missing visas. Additionally, should we have to reroute our itinerary for health & safety concerns, ISE cannot be held responsible for any required visa fees.

Visa Requirements

  • U.S. & Canadian – Ghana – This visa is needed before the voyage departure. You will not be able to board without this visa.
  • International or Non-U.S./Canadian passport holders may have additional requirements, and will receive specific requirements via email. ISE has retained the services of Travisa-CIBT to assist participants with passports and entry visas.
  • It is each voyager’s responsibility to obtain all visas required by their nationality in order to fully participate in the voyage as intended. Participants with missing visas will not be permitted to embark the ship.
  • Voyagers are also responsible for meeting entry requirements for countries where they do not require a visa. Entry requirements are listed in the Important Information Guide.

Travisa – CIBT Visa Service

Semester at Sea has retained the services of Travisa-CIBT to assist participants with obtaining passports and entry visas. We strongly encourage all voyagers to utilize the services of Travisa – CIBT.

Why should I use Travisa-CIBT to obtain my visas?

Travisa-CIBT can:

  • Provide each voyager with special SAS visa and passport processing rates
  • Review all applications and required documents prior to submission
  • Ensure the progress of visa applications can be tracked
  • Advocate on behalf of the applicant in the event of application errors, denials or consular closures
  • Minimize the need to mail your passport and/or travel to consulates more than once
  • Expedite the passport process for first time passports, and passport renewals. Click here to begin your passport order.

Travisa Additional Services
Need further assistance with your applications? Travisa offers additional services for an added fee. These services can include extra attention filling our visa forms for you, document review, additional tracking and extended business hours.  Please click here for a description of services.

Fall 2019 Visa Checklist & Deadlines

Download the FA19 Visa Checklist
for step-by-step instructions on how to obtain your visas.

U.S. & Canadian citizens only

June 20Priority deadline. Submit your visa applications on or before this date in order to have your visas back by August 1 and to avoid any unforeseen delays such as incorrect visa applications, consular closures, holiday delays, etc. Applicants that apply by the priority deadline will be able to utilize standard visa processing to avoid any expedited visa costs. To proceed with standard processing you must provide Travisa with (15) business days for the processing of the Ghana visas. On the Travisa order form you must indicate a passport need back date (15) business days after your completed order has been received in the Travisa office. Voyagers with international travel prior to embarkation or voyagers not using Travisa must submit their visa applications by the priority deadline.
June 20Voyagers must disclose any of the following information to Semester at Sea:

  • Extensive travel abroad prior to embarkation

  • Dual citizenship

  • Intention to obtain visas independently (not through Travisa - CIBT)

  • Insufficient blank visa pages (voyagers without 14 fully blank visa pages in their passport book)

August 1Final visa deadline. This is not the mail/postmarked date. All visa applications should be submitted and in the hands of Travisa - CIBT by this date. Visa Pre-Check is advised to avoid delays due to application errors. Visa applications should be expedited wherever possible. If you are intending to travel at all prior to your voyage, your visa applications should be submitted by the priority visa deadline (June 20). Please Note: Those voyagers that have not submitted their visa applications by August 1 may be cancelled from the voyage.
August 1

  • Voyagers must disclose (via email to programadministration@isevoyages.org) any situation which may prevent obtaining a required visa.

  • All participants must update their visa status via MyVoyage.


Step-by-Step Visa Video

Travisa has developed the step-by-step video below to help you complete your visa applications.



Visa Copies

Travisa – CIBT will scan and provide email copies of the Ghana visa to the applicant and to Semester at Sea staff to keep on file. The password to access your visa copies is worldodysseyfa19.

Voyagers intending to obtain their visas independently must disclose this information by June 20. Independent applicants must have their visa copies submitted to programadministration@isevoyages.org by August 1. If voyagers choose to obtain visas independently, Travisa will be unable to step in for assistance should your applications be rejected or you are unable to reach consular agents.


Passport Requirements and Blank Visa  Pages

Due to the cumulative number of blank visa pages required for entry by each country on Semester at Sea voyage itineraries, Semester at Sea will require voyagers to possess a minimum  of 14 fully blank visa pages in their passport prior to beginning the visa process. The standard 28-page U.S. passport contains exactly 17 blank visa pagesYou can find information regarding first time passport applications here or through our visa partner Travisa – CIBT here.

Each voyager must abide by the passport and blank visa page requirements detailed in the Fall 2019 Voyage Passport Requirements  section of our website in order to embark the ship. As a reminder, you cannot apply for visas until you have obtained your passport and verified you have an adequate number of blank pages. 

If the address on your State ID/Driver’s License is not correct or lists a PO Box address, you must update your ID immediately in order to avoid delays with the visa process.


Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)

Semester at Sea enrolls all participants (regardless of citizenship) in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) for the voyage itinerary. If you have extensive international travel plans before or after your voyage, it is advised that you also enroll in the STEP program for your pre- and post-voyage travel.

Additional Requirements for Minors

Voyagers sailing as minors will have additional visa and entry requirements. Please review this list of country specific requirements for minors. Please check this list often, as we will update it as new information is received. If you are participating in Semester at Sea as a minor and/or you are traveling with a minor, please ensure to include the following requirements below for each applicable country:

  • Full Long Form (Unabridged Birth Certificate) or a certified/notarized copy. All documents issued in a language other the English must be accompanied by a sworn translation into English and certified in the issuing country.
  • If the minor is traveling with one parent, then the minor must present a consent form from the absent parent stating consent to travel, or a court order granting full parental responsibilities to the present parent, or a death certificate in case of a deceased parent.
  • If the minor is traveling alone and/or with an adult other than parent(s) then the minor must also present a notarized consent form from the parents/legal guardians stating consent to travel, providing contact details of the parents/guardians. As Semester at Sea is an educational institution, a Semester at Sea official on board can be used as the named person accompanying/guardian. The name and details of this person will be sent to you each semester as requested.
  • Copies of passport information page or identification documents of the parents/legal guardians. International passport holders must also provide a copy of their U.S. resident status.

If you have questions about these additional requirements please contact us via email at operations@semesteratsea.org or call 800.854.0195.

FA19 Payment Options

Fall 2019 Payment Options
Students and Lifelong Learners

Full payment/last day to cancel without penalty for your voyage is June 11, 2019. If you have a balance due to Semester at Sea, an invoice will be mailed to the address listed on your MyVoyage account – consult the account summary on MyVoyage for the most recent activity and make payment for the amount listed in the Payment due section. Program fees vary depending on your cabin type. For questions about your balance please call 1.800.854.0195. Please submit payment to our office via one of the below options:

  1. Check or money order payable in US$ to: Institute for Shipboard Education or I.S.E. – make sure to include your name on the memo line. Please mail to:

Semester at Sea
2243 Centre Ave, Suite 300
Fort Collins, CO 80526

  1. Wire money to our account – contact our office for wiring instructions
  2. Online through the Payments and Financial Aid section of your MyVoyage Page.  Payments can be made via electronic check or debit/credit card (a 2.7% convenience fee is charged on credit card payments.)

Scholarships and Funding

Semester at Sea provides $5 million in aid to students each year. View Fall 2019 financial aid opportunities online.  Also, learn more about Federal Financial Aid and Outside Funding Options here.

ISE Scholarship and Funding Deadlines

  • Need and Merit Grants, Pell Grant Match – Reviewed on a rolling basis. Allow two weeks for review. These grants will remain open until two weeks prior to embarkation or until the budget has been spent; whichever comes first. Apply early!
  • All other awards – April 17, 2019 (recipients notified May 3, 2019)

Monthly Payment Plan

An interest-free installment payment plan from Cashnet can be made for 5 – 10 payments depending on when a student enrolls in the plan. There is a $55 fee to enroll in the Payment Plan. The earlier a student reserves a cabin and enrolls in the Payment Plan, the lower each payment will be.To learn more about the Payment Plan, visit commerce.cashnet.com/paymentportal, or call a Cashnet consultant at (877) 821-0625 Monday through Friday from 8am to 9pm ET.

When you enroll in the Payment Plan as a New User, please choose “Institute for Shipboard Education” from the school name drop down menu. On the next screen, please select Rolling Admission – For Students Sailing Jan (spring voyagers) or Rolling Admission – For Students Sailing Sept (fall voyagers) depending on your specific voyage.

Direct Bill Institutions

Please note that if you attend a direct bill school (the school pays Semester at Sea) then you should not enroll in the payment plan. A list of direct bill schools is available here.


If you have any questions about setting up your plan please email finance@isevoyages.org.

FA19 Staying in Touch

FA19 Staying in Touch

While on Semester at Sea, you have several options for staying in touch with family and friends. Additional information about these services will be provided to you on the ship.

Voyage Email Account

All voyagers are provided a free shipboard email address with which they can send and receive email messages on and off the ship. The email accounts will be in the format of firstname.lastname.FA19@semesteratsea.org (i.e. jane.doe.FA19@semesteratsea.org). Instructions for how to set up your voyage email account will be available approximately 1 month prior to embarkation.

Technology at Sea

For information about Mobile/Cell Phone Service, Onboard Wireless Network, Internet Access Policies and all technology at sea resources are available online here.

Detailed Itinerary

View the detailed voyage itinerary.

Sending Mail to the Ship

View a  list of reliable ports for sending mail and deadlines for mailing.

Calling the Ship

Every cabin aboard the MV World Odyssey is equipped with phones that enable around the clock ship-to-shore calling (both receiving incoming calls and placing outgoing calls). Participants can make outgoing calls by purchasing pre-paid calling cards at the Pursers desk on the ship. Family members and friends can call the ship 24 hours a day by dialing the toll free number: (800) 305-9203. The caller will be asked to provide a credit card that will be charged approximately $3.95 per minute. Your call will then be connected directly to your voyager’s cabin.

FA19 Program Fee Refund Plan

The cost of semester study abroad is a substantial investment.  If you are hurt or become ill and cannot complete the semester, you stand to lose thousands of dollars.

Semester at Sea’s Program Fee includes the cost of tuition (which includes required field classes), room and board, and travel health insurance–less financial aid. The Program Fee does not include the cost of Semester at Sea field excursions, on-board purchases, or independent travel.  The Program Fee is not refundable once the semester is underway.

The Program Fee Refund Plan will help to alleviate the financial loss in the unfortunate case where illness or injury forces you to leave the semester. It will provide funds which can reduce your loan obligations under government or private loan programs.

The Plan is administered by A.W.G. Dewar, Inc., Quincy, Massachusetts, now in its ninth decade of service to the higher educational community. Over 1,200 schools and colleges throughout North America offer the Plan. The Plan described below has been specifically designed for the needs of college students and parents. It offers a unique benefit of a significant refund of Program Fee when you are forced to withdraw for medical reasons at any time during the semester.

The Program Fee Refund Plan

Terms and Conditions