Friday, March 6, 2020

As the University of Iowa continues to monitor and prepare for the COVID-19 outbreak, we encourage members of the UI community to strongly consider deferring non-essential personal international travel during spring break and in the months ahead.

The Board of Regents suspended university-sponsored international travel for 30 days effective March 5. Find additional details in this FAQ.

If you do choose to travel internationally on a personal trip, please consider the below information and guidelines, which are intended to aid the university in supporting your health and safety.

  • Review CDC guidance on preventative measures you can take to stay healthy, as well as its specific health guidance for travelers.
  • If you choose to travel to a country with a CDC Level 3 travel warning due to COVID-19 (see updated list here), you will be expected to self-isolate for 14 days upon your return (this means staying primarily indoors, avoiding direct contact with others, and not resuming social activities until the self-isolation period ends). Please take this seriously and follow all instructions you receive from health officials at your port of entry. In alignment with guidance from the Iowa Department of Public Health and the CDC, the university will also ask you to share your plans to self-isolate upon your return using this link. Find additional details about self-isolation on this page.
  • During a period of self-isolation related to personal travel to a country with a CDC Level 3 travel warning due to COVID-19, employees will be required to use vacation, comp time, or accrued sick leave if telecommuting is not a viable option. See additional details in this FAQ.

Carefully weigh the risks and benefits of any international travel, and keep the following in mind:

  • Countries you visit may decide to implement travel restrictions with very little notice, impacting your ability to return to campus.
  • Airlines may cancel/limit flights in or out of a country or region.
  • Additional quarantine or isolation measures may be applied by the U.S. and other countries. Re-entry to the U.S. could be restricted.
  • Please keep in mind that the CDC’s self-isolation policy could be extended to other countries as the outbreak continues to evolve.

If you choose to travel to an area with widespread COVID-19 transmission and develop a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, call your healthcare provider or the UI Hospitals & Clinics Integrated Call Center (319-384-8442 or toll free at 800-777-8442) and inform them of your travel history and symptoms.

For continued updates on COVID-19, please see

We appreciate your diligence in taking preventative measures and hope you enjoy your spring break.