With the now wide availability of COVID-19 vaccines in the United States, accompanied by general improvement and/or stability in the public health landscape across the U.S., the University has lifted its previous “essential travel only” mandate and also is in the process of gradually easing restrictions on domestic University-sponsored travel. In addition, the University has lifted undergraduate travel restrictions for individual students undertaking University-sponsored domestic travel. (Students should consult Travel-related guidance for undergraduate students for more information.)
These updated travel policies will allow greater flexibility for members of the Brown community to conduct mission-critical research and to take part in activities and opportunities that cannot be deferred or carried out by remote means. Students no longer need to consult with Student Support Services regarding their travel within the U.S.
While we remain optimistic about international travel, we recognize that the public health conditions and entry requirements for international destinations continue to be variable and dynamic, even at this stage in the pandemic. Therefore, travel restrictions for international destinations remain in place. As with any University-sponsored activity, Brown expects faculty, staff and students to comply with national, state and local laws, as well as requirements of the community and/or organization to which they are traveling.
Brown continues to encourage all travelers on domestic and international travel to exercise caution and abide by relevant local and country health guidance. Travel guidelines and procedures are outlined in the following section.
Domestic travel is defined as travel to a destination within the United States or U.S. territories.
- Travel is permitted for faculty, staff, graduate and medical students, and undergraduates. Travelers do not need to seek pre-departure travel review or approval but are required to register their travel plans in TravelSafe.
- Travelers should review the CDC’s guidance on domestic travel, as well as the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) guidance for returning to R.I. after travel outside the state.
- Student organizations can begin requesting permission to travel domestically on behalf of their student organization beginning July 1, 2021. More information on this process will be shared by the Student Activities Office in June.
Essential International Travel
The University will continue to operate under a restricted travel policy for University-sponsored international travel, which is defined as travel outside the United States or outside U.S. territories.
- Faculty, staff, graduate and medical students who wish to be considered for international travel approval must submit a Safety Plan Proposal and Request for Travel Approval for Global Travel Risk Assessment Committee (GTRAC) review and may do so via the Safety Plan Proposal and Request for Approval for Essential Travel form.
- Safety Plans must be submitted at least three weeks prior to travel to allow time for GTRAC review and final review and approval by the provost.
- All approved travel plans must be registered in TravelSafe.
- In the event the risk level and/or public health condition changes at the traveler’s destination, Brown reserves the right to rescind authorization or revise the conditions for travel approval.
Travel for Field Research
Please note that if the purpose of travel is to carry out essential field research, the Justification and Safety Plan must first be approved by the Field Research Subcommittee. Individuals participating in field research involving international travel must still submit a Safety Plan Proposal and Request for Approval for Essential Travel form for review by GTRAC; domestic-based field research does not require an Essential Travel petition.
Details about field research approvals are available on the Resuming Research webpage.
Returning to Rhode Island and Brown after Travel
Any individual arriving from outside of Rhode Island (including domestic and international locations) must follow the current Rhode Island Department of Health guidelines regarding quarantine and testing, as applicable. More information can be found on the RIDOH website.