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International Student Travel during COVID-19: Resources

Information for students traveling internationally to or from the U.S. during the current crisis.


International Travel Websites for Current Information

International Travel Recommendations Quick Reference
International Travel
Recommendations and Requirements
Not Vaccinated Fully Vaccinated
Get tested 1-3 days before traveling out of the US Yes  
Mandatory test required before flying to US Yes Yes
Get tested 3-5 days after travel Yes Yes
Self-quarantine after travel for 7 days with a negative test or 10 days without test Yes  
Self-monitor for symptoms Yes Yes
Wear a mask and take other precautions during travel Yes Yes

If You Have Had COVID

Information for people who recently recovered from COVID-19

If you recovered from a documented COVID-19 infection within the last 3 months, follow all requirements and recommendations for fully vaccinated travelers except you do NOT need to get a test 3-5 days after travel unless you are symptomatic. People can continue to test positive for up to 3 months after diagnosis and not be infectious to others.

Updated 3 May 2021


Restrictions for Entering the U.S.

According to the CDC: 

  • All air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated peopleare required to have a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 3 days before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they board a flight to the United States. (Updated at CDC on 2 April 2021)

  • In addition to testing, non-U.S. citizens from the following countries are banned from entering the U.S. according to the updated Presidential proclamations: China, Iran, European Schengen Area, Ireland and United Kingdom, Brazil, India, and South Africa. (Updated 27 May 2021) There is an exemption available for students only from these countries (see National Interest Exemptions on this page).



National Interest Exemptions for Students

Announcing Additions to the National Interest Exceptions:  Travel in the national interest of the United States includes travel on a temporary basis that provides a substantial benefit to the U.S. economy including certain categories of students, academics,  as well as certain business travelersinvestorstreaty traders.  

STUDENTS – F1, M1 and their dependents 

  • Must have a valid I-20 
  • College or university must offer in-person classes 
  • Colleges or universities that move to online only classes are not included 
  • SEVIS fee paid 
  • Students will need to self-quarantine subject to local requirements 
  • If you currently have a valid F1/F2 visa and a valid I-20, you may travel to the U.S. and apply for admission.  You do not need to reapply. 
  • You will need the new I-20 issued and the signed letter from the college stating you are enrolled in in-person classes as well as your passport. 

Students and academics subject to these proclamations due to their presence in China, Iran, Brazil, India, or South Africa, may qualify for an NIE only if their academic program begins August 1, 2021 or later. 

Students seeking to apply for new F-1 or M-1 visas should check the status of visa services at the nearest embassy or consulate; those applicants who are found to be otherwise qualified for an F-1 or M-1 visa will automatically be considered for an NIE to travel.

According to U.S.-Canada and U.S.-Mexico Border Notices, the Canada and Mexico land port (car, commuter rail, or ferry) of entry permits as coming for essential travel "Individuals traveling to attend educational institutions." While students can go through the border, tourism is not permitted. This was extended again until 21 September 2021.

For more information, see the link below.