Before you travel to a foreign destination on UAB business, you must complete UAB's Foreign Travel Request Form. If you have any export control questions or concerns about international travel, please contact:

Marilyn Thomas, JD, Director of Export Control
(205) 996-2735

When you travel outside the United States, you need to be cognizant of export control laws and regulations that are implicated. Sharing sensitive information or carrying sensitive items with you abroad without a required export license can have serious repercussions for you and UAB. Consider the following before you travel abroad.

Foreign Travel Destinations

Generally, travel to foreign destinations is not problematic, except that travel to Cuba is usually prohibited.

Carrying Items with You

Items/Equipment: Generally, most common and commercially available items do not require export licenses, except for export to one of the T-5 countries (Iran, Sudan, Syria, Cuba, and North Korea) that sponsor terrorism.  However, personal items or equipment (including, but not limited to, laptops, web-enabled cell phones, and some GPS Units) may require an export license or other governmental approval prior to travelling based on sensitive technology components. For example Research Data/Information, you can carry and openly share or discuss any data or information that is published; in the public domain; normally taught as part of a catalog course at the institution; or that is resulting from fundamental research. You cannot carry and share any sensitive or controlled data or company proprietary materials or information. Unpublished research data or information, regardless of the format, may require an export license or other governmental approval.

All controlled or restricted data or information should be completely removed from laptops, phones, PDAs, or other portable storage devices (e.g., flash drives) before leaving the U.S.

Activities while Abroad


Your presentations should be limited to only information or data that is published, or is publicly available, or that qualifies as fundamental research. Data or information that is proprietary from sponsors, unpublished, or export-restricted should not be discussed.


If collaborations involve fundamental research, then information and results can be shared. Note that the fundamental research exclusion does not cover tangible items.


Most commercial items/equipment are exempt from export license requirements, but an assessment should be done prior to travelling. Scientific equipment should be reviewed.

Provision of Payment/Services

Under OFAC regulations, the institution cannot provide financial assistance (payments) to anyone on a blocked or sanctioned list. Some consulting activities would require an export license.