Chicago Metropolitan Area Travel

Planning on traveling in the Chicago Metropolitan Area?

Same day travel (leave and return on the same day)

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

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. Should students need to transport larger groups, they should contact University Services for more information.

Overnight Travel

Driving a vehicle?

All Registered Student Organization Travel must align with the Universities’ 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, l-roth@northwestern.edu 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.

Schedule your advisor meeting

Schedule a meeting with your advisor at least 4 weeks prior to travel for overnight travel. Bring to meeting the following:

  • Purpose
  • Tentative travel plan including:
      • Where you want to go
      • What organization or vendor you’d like to work with and/or conference or retreat you’d like to attend

NOTE: Vendors/Organizations must be able to provide contract in order to be considered valid options. SOA advisors are happy to assist in this process

If trip is approved then you will have to complete Student Organization Travel Planning Form. Please note you will have to complete any required supplementary forms including, but not limited to:

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 Tracey Gibson-Jackson, tgibjack@northwestern.edu, 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.