Exploring U-M’s Opportunities Around the World

 

FAQs for Travel to Health Risk Destinations

U-M Travel Eligibility

Do I need to follow the U-M vaccination policy to travel abroad?

 

Yes, students need to follow the U-M Vaccine requirement as described on the U-M Health Response. Students seeking exemptions to the COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for medical or religious reasons must follow the process outlined on the U-M Health Response.

Read the U-M COVID-19 Vaccination Policy here.

I AM AN UNDERGRADUATE STUDENT AND HAVE APPLIED FOR A U-M STUDY ABROAD PROGRAM, BUT MY DESTINATION COUNTRY HAS A U-M COVID-19 HIGH OR U-M TRAVEL RESTRICTION DESIGNATION. CAN I STILL PARTICIPATE IN THIS U-M PROGRAM?

 

If there is a U-M COVID-High or U-M Travel Restriction for your specific destination by the time financial commitments must be made, your program may not run, unless it has been vetted and approved by the International Travel Advisory Committee (ITOC). See Global Michigan – Travel Designations for the current listing of U-M travel designations. This flowchart can also provide guidance.

Many study abroad applications are open in hopes that the COVID-19 pandemic will improve and that the U-M COVID-19 High OR Travel Restriction for that country will be removed before students need to make financial commitments and in time to make alternate academic arrangements. As countries move from U-M COVID-19 Hight OR U-M Travel Restriction status, more student travel opportunities may become available. 

Please do not make any financial commitments, including for housing, flights, program fees, and others while a U-M COVID-19 High or Travel Restriction remains in effect for your destination. For additional details, please contact the U-M office sponsoring your program.

I WOULD LIKE TO PARTICIPATE IN A NON-UM EDUCATION ABROAD PROGRAM. CAN U-M SIGN MY PARTICIPATION FORM FOR THIS NON-UM PROGRAM?

 

U-M advisors can sign certain participation forms (as more fully described below) for a student unless there is a U-M COVID-19 High or U-M Travel Restriction designation in place for the travel destination at the time of signing. Undergraduate student University of Michigan Related Travel (UMRT) , including study abroad, is prohibited when there is a U-M COVID-19 High or U-M Travel Restriction in place for a specific country.  Advisors are able to verify the status of a student (ability to take classes, internship, etc. abroad; ability to accept transfer credit) by signing participation forms. Advisors should not sign participation forms that ask U-M to approve a program or approve travel.

Note 1 – Signing an allowable participation form does not make a travel experience University of Michigan Related Travel (UMRT) since the purpose of these forms is to verify a student’s enrollment and verify credit transfer. Signing the form does not imply U-M affiliation with the program or approval of the program. See SPG 601.31 for the definition of UMRT.

Students on UMRT  must complete U-M requirements before travel including completing a Travel Plan or Safety Plan to be reviewed by the International Travel Oversight Committee. Though U-M does not prohibit personal travel (non-UMRT), students not on UMRT are encouraged to carefully consider travel and cancel travel if the destination becomes a U-M COVID-19 High or Travel Restriction.  

Note 2 – For travel to a U-M COVID-19 High or U-M Travel Restriction destinations, students pursuing independent study abroad programs (not UMRT) may obtain verification of enrollment or transcripts from the Registrar’s Office: https://ro.umich.edu/records-registration/enrollment-verification. Students can offer this as documentation to external study abroad program providers, and explain that U-M advisors cannot sign approval forms while a U-M travel restriction is in place. For additional details about U-M travel policy and U-M Travel Designations, please see https://global.umich.edu/travel-resources/warnings-restrictions/.

Note 3 – U-M advisors can sign study abroad participation forms for U-M managed programs even if there is a U-M COVID-19 High or U-M Travel Restriction, though approval will be contingent on the location moving from a U-M COVID-19 High or Travel Restriction to a U-M COVID-19 Medium or U-M Travel Warning before the program begins. Undergraduate travel to a U-M Travel Restriction location remains prohibited.

WHAT DO I NEED TO DO WHEN I TRAVEL TO CAMPUS FROM ANOTHER FROM ABROAD?

 

Before you arrive in the United States:

  • Travelers are expected to follow the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines for travel to the United States, which includes but is not limited to:  
    • Before boarding a flight to the United States, the CDC recommends travelers to consider getting tested for current infection with a viral test as close to the time of departure as possible (no more than 3 days before travel). As of June 12, 2022, the CDC no longer requires air passengers traveling from a foreign country to the United States to show a negative COVID-19 viral test or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before they board their flight.
    • Travelers who test positive for COVID-19 are expected to follow local public health guidelines in the host country and CDC international travel guidelines, which includes, “Do not travel until a full 10 days after your symptoms started or the date your positive test was taken if you had no symptoms.” Following these guidelines is expected under the University of Michigan Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities
  • Non-U.S. citizens and non-U.S. immigrants need to also  follow additional CDC guidance for air travel to the United States, including:  
    • Showing proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Only limited exceptions apply. Learn more about this requirement.
    • Providing contact information to airlines before boarding flights to the United States.
    • Having your required documents, such as your passport and any visa or other entry/residency documentation.
    • See the International Center website for additional guidance for international students, scholars and employees.

After travel:

  • Get tested with a COVID-19 viral test 3-5 days after travel.
  • If your test is positive, isolate yourself to protect others from getting infected.
  • Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.
  • Follow all state, tribal, local, and territorial, recommendations or requirements after arrival.
  • For individuals not up to date on vaccinations, follow CDC guidelines which includes stay home and self-quarantine for a full 5 days after travel.

Last updated: June 16, 2022


Travel Preparation Considerations:

UHS Guidance on MPV (Monkeypox)

Review the University Health Services resource on monkeypox to learn more about how monkeypox spreads, what are the symptoms, what you should do if you have been exposed, how to protect yourself, and more.

What additional COVID-19 costs should I consider when planning travel?

 

Faculty, staff, and students willing to travel during COVID-19 must ensure that they are able to cover unexpected costs related to traveling. Faculty, staff, and students who are not able, or not comfortable with, covering potential travel expenses due to COVID-19 should not travel. These possible expenses include but are not limited to: 

  • Pre-departure flight cancellations in the event the COVID-19 situation in the destination country deteriorates.
  • Living costs, such as accommodations and meals, associated with being in-country longer than intended because the traveler tested positive for COVID-19 before departure, or because of border closures. 
  • COVID-19 related costs, including quarantine costs, COVID-19 testing, etc.

GeoBlue benefits will cover most medical issues, including medically necessary COVID-19 testing and treatment, visiting a hospital or clinic because of illness, and many other medical issues. GeoBlue also covers evacuations for certain political crises and natural disasters.

For students, GeoBlue also reimburses qualified quarantine costs when quarantine outside of the student’s housing is mandated by the host government. See GeoBlue & COVID-19: What To Know Before you Travel for details. This coverage is not available on the personal leisure or U-M business traveler GeoBlue plans at this time. 

Details are on the GeoBlue COVID-19 updates page and the UHS Travel Abroad Health Insurance page

U-M Office of Financial Aid and the Dean of Students Office have limited emergency funds at this time. 

Verify financial contingency plans, either with your U-M department or your own personal funds, in the event of unanticipated travel disruptions, which include but are not limited to:

Students must ensure that they have emergency funds while traveling during the pandemic, whether personal funds or verify that their U-M department has emergency funds that can be used for unexpected costs. The U-M Office of Financial Aid and the Dean of Students Office have limited to no emergency funds at this time. 

Entry Requirements and Resources
During the COVID-19 pandemic, entry requirements for countries have changed regularly, including details about:

  • Who is allowed to enter the country, including requirements for travelers arriving from different countries, requirements based on traveler’s nationality, and/or vaccine requirements.
  • What immigration forms, health forms, or COVID-19 tests need to be completed before departing.
  • Health regulations upon arrival. Note some countries may require visitors to quarantine in their own residence or in specific hotels at the cost of the traveler and require the traveler to follow specific health procedures, such as testing at the traveler’s expense, downloading public health apps, etc.
  • Travelers who do not follow entry requirements may not be allowed to enter the country and are subject to the host country laws, rules, and regulations.

The best way to determine entry requirements is to contact the consulate or embassy of your host country.

Additional resources include:  

Students should be able to enter their host country if they follow all entry requirements (including visa requirements as well as COVID-19 requirements), and that country still allows foreigners to enter the country. To ensure that students meet all entry requirements, students should monitor the entry requirements and verify that they meet the entry requirements for each travel destination(s) the weeks leading up to departure and right before departure. Entry requirements can change at any time and may include showing a specific type of negative COVID-19 test result, showing proof of being fully vaccinated, completing passenger locator forms, downloading certain public health apps, and possibly quarantining upon arrival. Visit the U.S. Embassy COVID-19 Information page of your destination(s), which provides an overview requirements and links to the host country’s entry requirement websites.

Students who are traveling through a U-M study abroad office, a study abroad provider, or directly with a university abroad can also email their contact if they have questions. 

Travelers should also remain flexible with travel plans and purchase refundable flights in the event that you are unable to meet your destination country’s entry requirements and travel must be delayed or cancelled. See the Global Michigan Travel Planning page, the “Preparing for International Travel” on the U-M Health Response website, and the Considerations for International Travel During COVID-19 for more information. 

HOW DO I OBTAIN THE COVID-19 TESTING NEEDED TO ENTER ANOTHER COUNTRY?

 

Other countries may have entry requirements that include having a specific type of COVID test taken at a specific time before departure.   Visit the University Health Services COVID-19 Testing for International Travelers for steps.

If you are already abroad, the US Embassy COVID-19 Specific Information for your Destination contains information on COVID-19 testing sites within that country. 

Please contact umich-itoc@umich.edu if you have additional questions about your destination or if you would like additional resources.

  • No.5
    Nationally

    U-M ranked 5th in the nation in the number of U.S. students studying abroad for the 2019-2020 academic year

  • 115
    Countries

    U-M hosted students from 115 countries in Fall 2020