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Warnings & Restrictions

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South Korea


    All U-M international travel is suspended until at least April 21, with rare exceptions requiring approval. Domestic travel for university business is strongly discouraged.

    Rare exceptions for international travel deemed essential may be granted if approved by a designated administrator. We encourage domestic travelers to seek virtual methods of convening for university business. The university also discourages personal domestic and international travel.


  • Status: Restriction - entire country
  • U-M Travel Restriction Areas: Entire country

The CDC classifies South Korea as a level 3 warning destination, recommending that individuals avoid all nonessential travel to the country and noting that there is limited access to adequate medical care in affected areas. From the CDC: A novel coronavirus is causing an outbreak of respiratory illness (COVID-19) in South Korea. Illness with this virus has ranged from mild to severe. Signs and symptoms of infection include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. Sore throat also has been reported in some patients. Some patients also have reported diarrhea without other symptoms. This new coronavirus has caused severe disease and death in patients who developed pneumonia. Risk factors for severe illness are not yet clear, although older adults and those with chronic medical conditions may be at higher risk for severe illness.

As an additional precaution, the entire country is under a U-M travel restriction. Undergraduate students may not proceed with U-M related travel to South Korea and graduate students may only do so for compelling and extenuating circumstances with an ITOC approved safety plan, which ensures they are aware of the health risks, have developed strategies to stay safe, and are prepared to shelter in place should South Korea impose additional travel restrictions. Safety Plans are very likely to be denied.

All U-M Related Travel to South Korea, including for faculty and staff, is discouraged. Personal travel to South Korea also is discouraged.

U-M Travel Warning areas are destinations where there are significant levels of health, safety or security risk.

U-M Travel Restriction areas are destinations where there are extreme health, safety or security risks.

U-M Travel Requirements per SPG 601.31:

Faculty and Staff

  • Register in the University Travel Registry.
  • Register with the U-M Travel Abroad Health Insurance provider (GeoBlue).
  • If leading graduate students to this destination, submit a Group Safety Plan proposal for review by the International Travel Oversight Committee (ITOC) before finalizing travel plans and a minimum of 3 weeks before departure.
    • The group safety plan must be approved to take graduate students to a warning destination.
    • If the group safety plan is approved, ensure that all participants sign a University Travel Warning / Restriction Destination Liability Waiver form in M-Compass.
  • Due to severe security concerns, the evacuation insurance provider may have limited or no capability in some regions of Travel Restriction destinations. Though faculty and staff are not required to complete an Individual Safety Plan proposal, they are encouraged to complete a safety plan, which ITOC may forward to the insurance provider to ensure that evacuation capabilities are available for each exact destination on the travel itinerary.

Graduate Students

  • Register in the University Travel Registry.
  • Enroll in the U-M Travel Abroad Health Insurance plan (GeoBlue).
  • Travel under an approved safety plan.
    • Individual travel: Submit a completed Individual Safety Plan proposal for review by the International Travel Oversight Committee (ITOC) before finalizing travel plans and a minimum of 3 weeks before departure.
    • Group travel: Group leader should submit a Group Safety Plan proposal for review by the International Travel Oversight Committee (ITOC) before finalizing travel plans and a minimum of 3 weeks before departure.  Individuals within the group travel do not need to complete individual safety plans.
  • Sign the University Travel Warning / Restriction Destination Liability Waiver when submitting an Individual Safety Plan. Individual travelers can find the waiver in their Safety Plan application in M-Compass. For travelers on group travel, the waiver will be in your M-Compass group travel registration.

Undergraduate Students

  • Travel is prohibited.

Additional Information

The following resources provide region specific health, safety, and security information to assist individuals in understanding and mitigating risks during travel:

The Safety Plan Worksheet guides travelers in preparing risk mitigation strategies for health, safety, and security. For travel to U-M warning/restriction destinations, safety plan proposals must be completed in M-Compass. Do not complete this worksheet for ITOC review.