Call for Help

COVID-19 Holiday Guidance

In response to the increase of COVID-19 within the community, state, and country, it is imperative that we all work to protect ourselves and one another and engage in the best possible practices to support reduced transmission. Travelling with this level of spread is always a concern. Everyone who travels should assume that they have come in contact with the virus and should help us by following the guidance below to support reduced transmission.

UW–Madison students should strongly consider whether they need to be in Madison after the Thanksgiving recess. For those who choose to travel, we ask that you do not return until spring semester. For those who need to stay in Madison until the end of fall term, we ask that you do not travel for the Thanksgiving recess.

Information about tests and testing options on and off campus

COVID-19 Testing

  • If you live in a residence hall and plan to return to campus after Thanksgiving, you should self-quarantine upon returning. You should minimize all interactions and only engage in required academic activities and report to work if applicable. If you are reporting to work, you must ensure that you follow all public health recommendations which include mask wearing and social distancing. You are also required to be tested twice upon return following the schedule sent by University Housing. Please note that if you test positive, you will be placed in isolation.
  • Students who live off campus and plan to return to Madison after Thanksgiving are strongly encouraged to self-quarantine upon return as well as get tested. You should minimize all interactions and only engage in required academic activities and report to work if applicable. If you are reporting to work, you must ensure that you follow all public health recommendations which include mask wearing and social distancing. It is recommended to be tested 3-5 days after return and again 10-12 days after returning. You should also minimize all interactions to help reduce the spread of COVID. Please ensure that you abide by all public health recommendations

Travel Guidance

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Before you go

If you leave Madison for Thanksgiving recess, strictly limit your activities from now until you depart to help limit your chances of getting sick and passing the virus to loved ones. This means staying home as much as possible and not getting together with people you don’t live with.

  • Schedule a COVID-19 test and then self-quarantine until you travel. A test is just a snapshot in time and should not be used in place of other preventive measures, like wearing face coverings and maintaining physical distance from others. Employees working in person are encouraged to request time off prior to travel while they await test results to reduce the chances of transmission.
  • Monitor your symptoms. Don’t travel if you are sick, in isolation or in quarantine.

While traveling and at your destination

  • Travel in a personal vehicle with limited passengers if possible. Wear face coverings if traveling with people outside your household. If using public transportation, check the carrier requirements for testing or otherwise well before travel. Please review the CDC’s site for up-to-date information: cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-during-covid19.html
  • Keep practicing safe behaviors – frequent handwashing, face coverings, and physical distancing.
  • Strictly limit the number of people you see in person – this year it is not safe to get together with all your friends and family.
  • Self-monitor for symptoms; if you develop symptoms, consult a health care provider regarding testing at your current location. You may find local testing options here: hhs.gov/coronavirus/community-based-testing-sites/index.html

Upon your return

  • If you live in a residence hall and plan to return to campus after Thanksgiving, you should self-quarantine upon returning. You should minimize all interactions and only engage in required academic activities and report to work if applicable. If you are reporting to work, you must ensure that you follow all public health recommendations which include mask wearing and social distancing. You are also required to be tested twice upon return following the schedule sent by University Housing. Please note that if you test positive, you will be placed in isolation.
  • Students who live off campus and plan to return to Madison after Thanksgiving are strongly encouraged to self-quarantine upon return as well as get tested. It is recommended to be tested 3-5 days after return and again 10-12 days after returning. You should also minimize all interactions to help reduce the spread of COVID. Please ensure that you abide by all public health recommendations.

If you stay in Madison or Dane County

  • Please review the new public health order prohibiting indoor gatherings and limiting outdoor gatherings.
  • In addition to the city’s public health order, to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in Madison and Dane County, limit your risk of exposure by limiting your close contacts. This may require declining invitations for gatherings with friends or family. These may be uncomfortable conversations, but we encourage each family to do what is best for them and their communities.

Campus testing information

In addition to regular campus testing hours, UHS will offer weekend testing in advance of the Thanksgiving recess, including Saturday, November 21 and Sunday, November 22. Schedule a no-cost test at a UHS testing site location: https://www.uhs.wisc.edu/medical/testing/

Try to schedule a test five business days before you travel to allow enough time for your test results to be returned and for any potential follow-up from a UHS provider. Find more information about testing at UW–Madison here: covidresponse.wisc.edu/testing/.

After your test, continue to self-quarantine until you travel or you receive results.

If you travel or choose to gather with people you do not live with, consider limiting your interactions with others as much as possible for 14 days upon return.

Self-monitor for symptoms; if you develop symptoms, stay home except to seek a COVID-19 test or receive medical care.