The International Student ID Card (ISIC) can be beneficial for student travelers. Here is information about what it is, how to get one, and what the perks are.
When traveling, sometimes having an International Student Identification Card (ISIC) can be beneficial. From discounts to loss of luggage protection to simply having an additional form of ID, the ISIC may be a worthy investment for students planning to study abroad.
What is an ISIC?
The ISIC is an identification card that can sometimes be purchased through your home university, but also through the discount travel agency STA Travel, or even directly through the International Student Travel Confederation (ISTC). It is a photo ID that also includes the student’s date of birth and home country. The card is an internationally recognized form of student identification. Cards expire after one year.
What Can an ISIC be Used For?
The card can be used for discounts, travel protection (such as insurance coverage up to a certain amount for lost luggage or stolen items) and basic sickness/accident insurance.
As far as discounts go, students can get better deals on museum admission and even at hostels. Check out the “Discount Finder” feature on STA Travel’s website to find ISIC discounts in a specific country.
In addition to the benefits the ISIC offers, it’s just good to have an additional photo ID (something identifying you as a student in particular) among your documents that you bring abroad with you.
How to Get an ISIC
Simply contact the appropriate office at your school; talk to the Study Abroad office to see if they are the ones who can help you with the ISIC. If not, they can direct you to the office that handles the applications. It’s also possible to get the card through STA Travel or the ISTC. On the ISTC website, there is a database of all locations where it’s possible to get an ISIC.
ISIC Costs and Application Requirements
The most basic requirement is full-time student status. The card costs USD 22, plus whatever price paid for passport-sized photos. If submitting the application through STA Travel, the following information is required: Copies of a valid student ID, a current class schedule, and a tuition receipt. Check with the office through which you’re buying the card for any additional specific requirements.
Other Types of International ID Cards Offered
In addition to the ISIC, there are other ID cards available (also just USD 22) for travelers under a certain age, and for teachers:
- ITIC: International Teacher ID Card
- IYTC: International Youth Travel Card (for travelers under 26)
For further information about the ISIC, ITIC, and IYTC, check out the websites for STA Travel and the International Student Travel Confederation, or talk to a study abroad advisor at your university.
The International Student ID Card provides students with a form of identification that can prove useful when it comes to discounts, lost luggage, and in the event that an extra form of ID is needed. Universally recognized, the ISIC can be a great investment for student travelers.