On March 19, 2020, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) raised its Global Health Advisory from Level 3 (reconsider travel) to Level 4 (do not travel), responding to the global threat of COVID-19. The March 19, 2020 message, which is directed to U.S. citizens, advises:
- U.S. citizens should avoid all international travel
- In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens who are temporarily abroad should arrange for immediate return to the United States, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period
- U.S. citizens who live abroad should avoid all international travel
- Many countries are experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks and implementing travel restrictions and mandatory quarantines, closing borders, and prohibiting non-citizens from entry with little advance notice.
- Airlines have cancelled many international flights and several cruise operators have suspended operations or cancelled trips.
- If you choose to travel internationally, your travel plans may be severely disrupted, and you may be forced to remain outside of the United States for an indefinite timeframe.
Go to the Global Health Advisory page to read it in its entirety.
There are four color-coded advisory levels: Levels 1-4.
Level 1 - Exercise Normal Precautions. Blue. This is the lowest advisory level for safety and security risk. There is some risk in any international travel. Conditions in other countries may differ from those in the United States and may change at any time.
Level 2 - Exercise Increased Caution. Yellow. Be aware of heightened risks to safety and security. The Department of State provides additional advice for travelers in these areas in the Travel Advisory. Conditions in any country may change at any time.
Level 3 - Reconsider Travel. Orange. Avoid travel due to serious risks to safety and security. The Department of State provides additional advice for travelers in these areas in the Travel Advisory. Conditions in any country may change at any time.
Level 4 – Do Not Travel. Red. This is the highest advisory level due to greater likelihood of life-threatening risks. During an emergency, the U.S. government may have very limited ability to provide assistance. The Department of State advises that U.S. citizens not travel to the country or to leave as soon as it is safe to do so. The Department of State provides additional advice for travelers in these areas in the Travel Advisory. Conditions in any country may change at any time.