Domestic Travel Outside Chicago Area

Driving a vehicle?

University Motor Pool

Northwestern University students and student groups must use University vehicles if the trip is for a registered student organization. Any individual who drives his or her personal vehicle to an activity assumes all responsibility for the safety of himself/herself as well as any passengers. The University bears no liability for student use of personal vehicles.

  • Only students who have been approved by the Office of Risk Management are allowed to drive University vehicles or rented vehicles for University activities.
  • Student drivers must successfully complete the University's Defensive Driving Course and certify that his/her driving record is free of any two moving violations in the past year, or one moving violation and one accident, or two accidents, or any single alcohol related stop.
  • Complete list of Student Certified Drivers

All Registered Student Organization Travel must align with the University's Travel Policies outlined by the Office of Risk Management,

Requests for exceptions to the University policy that prohibits travel over 150 miles on weekdays and 300 miles on weekends, travel before 6:00am or after 11:00pm must be submitted via email to Leland Roth ( with the following information:

  • Destination
  • Number of Miles
  • Time they are leaving campus
  • Time the plan to arrive at destination
  • Time they plan to return to campus
  • Time they plan to arrive on campus
Using a bus? (Note, students may not drive any vehicle larger than a 7 person van)

Contact University Services for information on bus services including 14 passenger vans.

Traveling by plane?

All travel should be arranged via the University's preferred provider, Orbitz.

Advisors can register their students to use this service by following the instructions below:

If you have students or part-time employees who need access to Orbitz for Business, please fill out columns A-P of this Excel spreadsheet. The completed form should be sent to Jeff Levin. Please note that you can put more than one student/temp employee on the form and access rights can be assigned for as long as three years. Do not move or delete columns on the spreadsheet. After the form is reviewed it will be loaded into Orbitz.  Please call Jeff at 1-5993 if you have any questions.

If a student is responsible for purchasing a flight for other members the advisor should designate that student as the "travel arranger" when contacting Jeff Levin.

Schedule your advisor meeting

  1. Schedule a meeting with your advisor at least 4 weeks prior to travel for overnight travel.
  2. Bring to meeting the following:
    1. Purpose
    2. Tentative travel plan including:   
      1. Where you want to go
      2. What organization or vendor you’d like to work with and/or conference or retreat you’d like to attend
        1. NOTE: Vendors/Organizations must be able to provide contract in order to be considered valid options. CSI advisors are happy to assist in this process

If trip is approved then:

  1. Complete Student Organization Travel Planning Form
  2. Please note you will have to complete any required supplementary forms including, but not limited to:
    1. Motor Pool Authorization Form (pdf)
      1. NOTE: Defensive Driving Certification must be complete for all drivers before submitting Motor Pool Authorization Form
    2. Travel Waiver (doc)
    3. Emergency Information Form (pdf)
    4. Behavior Agreement (pdf)
    5. Membership Travel List (doc)

If you are partnering with vendor and/or organization begin contract process.

NOTE: All contracts must be reviewed by advisor and then submitted by advisor to Natalie Furlett at least two weeks prior to proposed travel.

NOTE: All supplemental forms and/or waivers need to be submitted to advisor prior to scheduled departure date. Travel subject to cancellation by the University if all participant forms are not received at least one week prior to proposed departure.