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Travel During COVID-19 Pandemic

This webpage is a central hub for current travel policies and the latest health and safety resources in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Contact the Office for Global Health, Safety, and Security with questions.


Links to waiver request forms, protocols for travelers to campus, and travel health and safety resources are below.

Effective May 14, 2021, MSU-sponsored domestic travel authorization will return to the processes used prior to the pandemic.

Employees, students, and approved guests seeking to engage in MSU-sponsored international travel must submit a waiver for review at least 3 weeks prior to departure. Prior to submitting the waiver, you will be required to obtain documentation from your unit administrator and, for students, from the cognizant advisor, college administrator or program director. Note: The health and safety context for travel is currently very fluid, rapidly evolving by location and significantly impacted by frequent issuances of local, national, and international policies.

For MSU faculty and staff who reside internationally, MSU’s international travel review process applies for any travel taking place from the country of residence to another country (except the United States). MSU’s domestic travel authorization process applies for any travel taking place within the country of residence. In both cases, the most stringent health and safety requirements (MSU and U.S. versus country of residence and country of destination) will prevail. For any travel to campus, MSU’s inbound health protocols apply.

As of January 26, 2021, anyone traveling by plane to the United States from an international location must present proof of a negative viral COVID test (NAAT or antigen) from within 72 hours of departure to the U.S. Anyone without evidence of a negative test will be denied boarding. This requirement applies to everyone including citizens and permanent residents or those fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Please review detailed guidance from the CDC.

side-by-side_mountain-clouds.jpgPre-Travel Considerations

Travel has always involved risk, and the COVID-19 pandemic presents even more considerations for anyone traveling domestically or internationally. 


Statue of Sparty at MSU with pink flowering tree in the backgroundOutgoing MSU-Sponsored Domestic Travel

MSU-sponsored domestic travel should follow travel authorization procedures used prior to the pandemic. All domestic travelers should follow the health and safety measures outlined in this section.

View of a city street through a window with flower petal shaped window panesOutgoing MSU-Sponsored International Travel

Individuals with essential international travel may apply for a travel waiver. Waiver requests for essential student travel will be reviewed by the Risk and Security Assessment Committee (RSAC) which will make a recommendation to the Provost who has final authority for approving waivers. Waivers for essential faculty, staff and administrator travel will be reviewed by the Faculty and Staff Travel Review (FASTR) Committee which will make a recommendation to the relevant dean who has final approval authority.

side-by-side_campus-aerial2.jpgArriving or Returning to MSU

All MSU travelers who are coming to campus from in-state, out-of-state, or international locations must follow MSU health protocols for inbound travelers.

CDC coronavirus.jpgAccessing Healthcare While Traveling Internationally During COVID-19

Important information about international health insurance coverage and International SOS membership if you are traveling abroad during COVID-19.

side-by-side_health.jpgCOVID-19 Travel Health Resources

The COVID-19 pandemic is continuously changing health and safety conditions around the globe. The Office for Global Health, Safety, and Security will serve as a central hub for all travel related health and safety information including information regarding screening requirements, border closings, recommendations for airline arrangements, and procedures to protect your health and safety when traveling. 

side-by-side_canada-cntower.jpgGuidance for Education Abroad (EA) Program Directors

EA and Global Safety have developed guidance designed to support planning for education abroad programs given the COVID-19 pandemic. All programs must meet risk mitigation requirements and undergo a COVID-19 impact assessment.