Campus News

Update on International Travel Guidelines

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 16, 2021) — The University of Kentucky community received an email today on an update regarding international travel guidelines. Please see the message below.

Dear Campus Community,

This week, we began our transition to new policies on campus that reflect continued progress in emerging from the global pandemic. You can read more about those here. At the same time, even as we return to more normal operations on so many fronts, we remain engaged in many areas that are complex and require expanded guidance and explanation. One of those important areas is international travel, which exemplifies our commitment to being a globally engaged university with opportunities for international research, collaboration and study by our faculty, staff and students.

The following new guidelines around international travel among members of our community have been updated and are aligned with CDC guidance:

  • Effective immediately, fully vaccinated employees may conduct UK-endorsed international travel to any country that the CDC has designated a risk level 3 or lower for COVID-19 without completing an additional review process. 
  • All UK-endorsed travel to these countries must be registered in the university’s international travel registry.
  • Fully vaccinated employees who wish to travel to a country designated as a risk level 4 by the CDC must complete an additional review/approval process through the university’s Director of International Health, Safety and Security, Jason Hope (
  • Employees who are not fully vaccinated must also complete an additional review/approval process through the university’s Director of International Health, Safety and Security before traveling to any international destination, regardless of risk level. 
  • All international airline tickets for UK-endorsed travel must be purchased through UK Travel Services. 
  • International travel requests by students, including graduate students, and Education Abroad programs, will continue to be reviewed and approved on a case-by-case basis in alignment with UK Administrative Regulation 4:9. 

All international travelers should be aware that many countries continue to implement border restrictions, quarantine periods and testing requirements. It is essential for travelers to understand the landscape in their destination country so that they are prepared for any logistical challenges they may encounter. These guidelines represent still one more important step in our return to more normal operations. They also reinforce our guiding principle of ensuring the health and safety of our community in everything that we do. Thank you for your commitment to that principle and to our work together to emerge from this time of challenge.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.