Appendix L: Student Travel Policy for Registered Student Organizations

  1. Policy Statement

    It is the policy of The University of Texas at Austin to promote safe travel by members of its registered student organizations to certain events and activities.

  2. Scope

    This policy applies to the travel of student members of a registered student organization when the registered student organization requires or coordinates an activity or event for its student members and the activity or event occurs more than twenty-five miles from the campus of the University, or when members attend an activity or event that involves any overnight stay.

  3. Trip Approval Requirements
    1. Registered student organizations that organize events or activities covered by this policy must obtain prior authorization from the Office of the Dean of Students, Student Activities.
    2. To obtain authorization to travel, the registered student organization must apply through a process prescribed by the dean of students. The request must be submitted at least five business days prior to the proposed trip, along with the following information:
      1. A list of the names and EIDs for each participant;
      2. The name, phone number, and address of lodgings, if applicable;
      3. The date and time of the arrival and departure from lodgings, if applicable;
      4. The date and time of the departure and return to campus;
      5. A list of valid operators' driver license names and numbers for any participants who will operate vehicles;
      6. A list of valid liability insurance policy numbers and insurance carriers that will cover any participants who will operate the vehicles and cover the vehicles operated; and
      7. A schedule for the trip that includes travel, planned activities, meals, and sleep period(s). Organization utilizing personal vehicles for travel must allow for travelers to have at least 6 hours of sleep before driving.
    3. The registered student organization must collect and take a copy of the following documents and information with them while on the trip:
      1. A list of the names, phone numbers, and the name and number of an emergency contact for each participant;
      2. A list of valid operators’ license names and numbers for any participants who will operate vehicles; and
      3. Copies of current medical insurance certificates or a copy of both sides of an insurance group membership card for each person who wishes to participate in the activity or event. Purchase of a reasonably priced, short-term medical insurance policy can be arranged by Student Activities on behalf of students who do not have, or cannot verify, current medical coverage. Information concerning this coverage is available from Student Activities, (512) 471-3065.
  4. Travel by Motor Vehicle
    1. Compliance with State Law

      Motor vehicles used for travel covered by this policy shall have a current proof of liability insurance card and a current state registration.

    2. Vehicle Operator Requirements
      1. All students who will operate vehicles while engaged in travel covered by this policy must have a valid operator’s license, valid insurance, and be trained as required by law to drive the vehicle that will be used. 
      2. Operators of motor vehicles shall comply with all laws, regulations, and posted signs or directions regarding speed and traffic control.
      3. Operators shall drive no more than four hours without a minimum rest stop of thirty minutes.
      4. Operators shall drive no more than ten hours in any twenty-four-hour period.
      5. Members must assign a navigator for trips if more than one member is traveling. The navigator shall remain awake while on duty. The navigator's responsibility is to assist with way finding and route planning.
      6. Trips requiring more than ten hours of driving time shall include overnight lodging.
    3. Safety Requirements for Both Operators and Passengers
      1. Seat Belts. Occupants of motor vehicles shall use seat belts or other approved safety restraint devices required by law or regulation at all times when the vehicle is in operation.
      2. Alcohol and Illegal Substances. Occupants of motor vehicles shall not possess, consume, or transport any alcoholic beverages or illegal substances.
      3. Passenger Capacity. The total number of passengers in any vehicle at any time it is in operation shall not exceed the manufacturer’s recommended capacity, or the number specified by University policy, UT System Policy 157, or federal or state law or regulations, whichever is lowest.
  5. Non-Compliance
    This applies to any organization that falls within the scope of this policy. Failure or refusal to comply with this policy may result in the Dean of Students initiating disciplinary proceedings under subchapter 6-500 and/or subchapter 11-500 of the Institutional Rules.

For assistance: Questions regarding this policy should be directed to the Office of the Dean of Students, Student Activities.

Policy Website: Handbook of Operating Procedures, 9-1410