Since it has become clear that adhesion receptors are trafficked through the endosomal pathway and that this can influence their function, much effort has been invested in obtaining detailed descriptions of the molecular machinery responsible for internalizing and recycling integrins. New findings indicate that integrin trafficking dictates the nature of Rho GTPase signalling during cytokinesis and cell migration. Furthermore, integrins can exert control over the trafficking of other receptors in a way that drives cancer cell invasion and tumour angiogenesis. © 2009 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.