Travel safety

castle image
UVic exchange student enjoys the stunning views of the ruined Castle Dunnottar in Scotland. Photo: Thea Smith

All students, faculty and staff planning international travel should take the initiative to learn about the countries in which they will be travelling and take reasonable precautions to ensure they stay healthy and safe. This includes becoming familiar with UVic's Off-Campus Activity Risk Management Policy.

International travel during the COVID-19 pandemic

On Oct. 21, the Government of Canada lifted its advisory for fully vaccinated Canadians to avoid all non-essential international travel. This means that university sanctioned activities abroad can now resume for students for countries and regions that are listed at “exercise normal security precautions” and “exercise a high degree of caution.” 
UVic faculty and staff are no longer required to seek vice-presidential authorization to travel on centrally/departmentally-funded budgets; with the exception of staff planning to travel to a country listed as "avoid all non-essential travel" or "avoid all travel".
At this time, all unvaccinated travellers are still advised to continue avoiding non-essential travel to all destinations. As of Oct. 30, all travellers who are departing from Canadian airports are required to be fully vaccinated.

Please be advised that COVID-19 related restrictions continue to impact international travel. Everyone must consult the Government of Canada’s travel advisory based on their intended destination and follow health and security recommendations in addition to prevention measures. All travellers need to be aware of and understand their obligation to satisfy, and continually monitor, health and safety requirements established by the official health offices from all levels of government of the destination country, International SOS and other authorities or sources. 

Follow the steps provided below for students, faculty and staff travelling internationally.

Participants of domestic off-campus activities are encouraged to follow these steps to the extent as they apply to them and help mitigate their travel risk.


Column Box Student

Follow these steps if you are a UVic student travelling outside of Canada for any university-sanctioned activity.

Student safety

Faculty & Staff


Follow these steps if you are UVic faculty or staff travelling outside of Canada for any university-sanctioned activity.

Faculty & staff safety

Guidance for Leaders


Follow these steps if you are UVic faculty or staff responsible for organizing or supervising student trips abroad.

Info for leaders

“Off-campus activity” means a university organized or endorsed activity involving one or more university community members, which takes place beyond the boundaries of the University of Victoria campus. Such activities include:

  • fieldwork/field schools: any approved practical teaching and research activities carried out by faculty, staff, or students in the natural environment or community, away from the normal support networks of the university.
  • remote off-campus activities: any off-campus activity, including fieldwork or field schools, carried out in a location where it is difficult to summon help, and is separated by significant time or distance from emergency or medical assistance.
  • other examples include: student or faculty exchanges; cooperative education work term placements; practica; internships; travel/study programs; travel to attend conferences and university business; activities that are part of a university course or program (credit or non-credit); and university organized extracurricular or athletic activities.

This policy does not cover activities over which the university exercises no control and for which it can therefore take no responsibility. Specifically, among others, it does not cover:

  1. external activities (including consulting) undertaken by faculty, staff, or students that are not part of the individual’s employment responsibilities or academic program at the university;
  2. activities organized exclusively by students or student groups without expressed approval, sanction, or funding from the university;
  3. travel or activities of any person who is not a university community member as defined in this policy (e.g., a person accompanying a university community member traveling to attend a conference would not be considered an authorized volunteer because the accompanying individual is not traveling for the purpose of participating in the off-campus activity (the conference)); or
  4. personal travel undertaken before or after an off-campus university activity concludes.