Before embarking on your study abroad journey, it is important to reflect on how culturally based ideas, definitions, and practices about sexuality and gender identity may differ in your host culture compared to those you experience in the U.S. LGBTQ+ folks and ways of life are embraced or accepted to varying degrees from culture to culture. It is important to consider how these cultural differences will affect your relationships with those around you in your host culture, your experience adjusting to the host culture, and your study abroad experience as a whole.
When choosing a program, consider how a host country's religious, societal, and legal traditions could embrace, limit, or even prohibit your ability to express your LGBTQ+ identity. Transgender and gender-queer students should look into gender roles and norms in their host culture, including their rigidity and how they may differ from those in U.S. cultures. Additionally, trans and gender-queer students should consider the cultural ideas and legality of those identities in their host culture, as they may limit your ability to receive gender-affirming care, such as HRT.
Lastly, it is important that you look into safety precautions that you can take to protect yourself in your host country, and remember to maintain situational awareness in unfamiliar settings.
- Diversity Abroad – LGBTQ students abroad
- Resources from the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association
- TSA resources for Transgender Passengers
- Goabroad.com – Safe, neutral, and negative locales for-LGBTQ study abroad
- Transequality.org – Passports
- U.S. State Department – Know before you go: LGBTQ International Travel
Trans and Gender-queer Perspectives
- Trans in Hyderabad, India
- Breaking the Picture Frame: Studying Abroad While Trans
- Trans Ireland: an interview
- Ni él, ni ella: Being Nonbinary in Spain
- Advice for Studying Abroad as a Transgender Student in Japan?
Interested in hearing local student perspectives on LGBTQ+ Study Abroad? Check out CIE's Queer Abroad panel from Fall 2020.
If you find these resources useful, have helpful resources we should consider adding, or have questions or comments about this page, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Updated 2/24/2021 by Shosh Pojawa (CIE Peer Advisor, AY20-21)