Visitor Policy: Expired 3-31-23

Update 3/31/23

Visitors to the University are expected to follow CDC and NJ Department of Health guidance for individuals who test positive for COVID-19 or were in close contact with someone who tested positive in the past 10 days, including isolation and mask requirements.
The Visitor Policy enacted for COVID-19 mitigation is no longer in effect.

The public is generally welcome on the grounds of the Princeton campus, and in select buildings such as the University Chapel, Richardson Auditorium, Frist Campus Center, and the Milberg Gallery of Firestone Library. Entry to all other buildings is limited to visitors who are invited or sponsored by a member of the Princeton community. Anyone entering any University building must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or otherwise compliant with the policy below.

Responsible Executive: Executive Vice President

Responsible Office: Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) 

Contacts: Please direct questions concerning this policy to EHS at [email protected](link sends e-mail).

Effective Date: August 24, 2020. Rescinded March 31, 2023.

In the interest of public health and to reduce the possible transmission of communicable diseases, particularly COVID-19, the University institutes this policy on visitors, among other policies, procedures, and guidance. This policy will remain in effect until the risk of COVID-19 has been mitigated to a degree that the Environmental Safety and Risk Management Committee determines it is no longer needed, based on guidance from public health experts.

I.    Policy Statement

All visitors must be invited or sponsored and comply with the requirements of this policy prior to entering campus buildings.   Visitors must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19; however, depending on the category of the visit detailed in Section IV of this policy, individuals who are not fully vaccinated may be permitted for short-term visits of no more than five days with no overnight stays on campus if they meet the requirements of section IV.b below (including showing proof of a negative COVID-19 test OR wearing a face covering at all times inside campus buildings).  The categories of visitors described in section IV.a below must be fully vaccinated with no exceptions.  Regardless of vaccination status, all visitors must comply with the requirements of face coverings in effect at the time of their visit to campus. 

II.    Who Is Affected by This Policy

This policy applies to all students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

III.    Definitions

Fully vaccinated means that at least two weeks have passed since receiving the second dose of a two-dose vaccine or the single dose of a one-dose vaccine, consistent with the definition described in the COVID-19 Vaccine Policy.

Proof of Vaccination may include an official CDC COVID-19 vaccination card, a vaccine certificate from an official source (e.g., public health agency, government agency, or authorized vaccine provider), a mobile phone app, or a digital or physical photo of a vaccination card or record.

Visitors means any individual who does not have an appointment as University student, faculty, or staff, including those who are NOT a(n)

  • Enrolled degree-seeking undergraduate and graduate student
  • Current employee of the University, including: 
    • Faculty and staff who currently have access to campus buildings.
    • Casual employees. 
    • Visiting researchers and visiting faculty with formal appointments.
    • Long-term temporary staff agency personnel.
  • University affiliates who regularly spend time on campus interacting with faculty, staff, and students are covered by the University Vaccination Policy.[1]

Secondary occupants residing with graduate or undergraduate students in University dormitory housing, as approved by Housing and Real Estate Services, are not considered visitors to their residences and residential complex, but are considered visitors to other University buildings.

IV.    Policy

Unless meeting the conditions described in this section, visitors are prohibited from entering all campus buildings, including the Libraries, Dillon Gym, Richardson Auditorium, and Chapel.  Visitors are permitted outdoors, on campus grounds. 

Visitors must cancel their planned visit if they test positive for COVID-19 within ten (10) days of the planned start of their visit, if they are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19[2], or if they were identified as a close contact of an individual who tested positive within the last ten (10) days and have not had a negative COVID-19 test since the exposure.  Visitors must notify the sponsoring host if they test positive for COVID-19 within five days after their visit.

IV.a Visitors requiring vaccination

The following categories of visitors must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 without exception and must be prepared to show proof of vaccination as described in Section III. All of these visitors must be sponsored by a member of the University community (faculty, staff, graduate student, or undergraduate student) or a University department or unit.

  • Visitors staying overnight in University dormitories. This does not include graduate student apartment complexes, such as Lakeside or Lawrence Apartments.
  • Those participating in summer residential programs, such as sports camps, summer research, etc.
  • Those participating in multi-day programs sponsored by the University, such as Princeton University Preparatory Program (PUPP), summer day camps, Princeton Writing Program, Teachers as Scholars, Teacher Prep, regular tutoring, etc. This does not include conferences and events.
  • TigerCard holders (e.g., faculty spouses, graduate student dependents, etc.) with access to the libraries or Dillon Gym facilities.
  • Visiting Student Research Collaborators.
  • Individuals participating in University-sponsored programs where removal of a mask indoors is necessary.
  • Long-term visits of more than five days, consecutively or non-consecutively.

IV.b. Visitors requiring vaccination OR a negative test OR agree to wear mask

The categories of visitors listed below must

  • Be fuly vaccinated for COVID-19, be prepared to show proof of vaccination as described in Section III, and follow the policy for masks in effect at the time of their visit OR
  • Have a negative test for COVID-19 via PCR within 72 hours before the start of the scheduled visit or via rapid antigen test within 8 hours before the start of the scheduled visit and be prepared to show proof of the negative test OR
  • Agree to wear a mask at all times when indoors. These individuals cannot remove their masks inside of University buildings, not even to eat or drink.

Categories of these visitors include:

  • Individuals invited or approved by faculty, staff, or students or by a department or unit for short-term visits (5 days or fewer, consecutively or non-consecutively, no overnight stay on campus) and who will not have independent access to buildings.
  • Attendees at University-sponsored meetings, conferences, and events.
  • Individuals invited to participate in sponsored human subjects research.
  • Individuals participating in or attending events in University buildings where the sponsor is a third-party entity that has permission to use the facilities.

IV.c. Pre-approved visitors

The following visitors do not require sponsors or approval. If they are not fully vaccinated, they must wear a mask indoors around other people.

  • Contractors and vendors retained to provide essential services on campus, including repair, technical assistance, renovation, construction, maintenance, moving, food delivery, waste removal, etc. and who comply with the Requirements for Vendors and Contractors.
  • Guests in non-dormitory University residences. Visitors who are fully vaccinated must wear a mask in common spaces, such as lobbies, common rooms, hallways, etc.
  • Regulatory inspectors, including federal, state, and local agency inspectors on campus for planned or unplanned visits.

V.    Violations

Students, faculty and staff are responsible for communicating the requirements of this policy to the visitors they sponsor, and for ensuring that those visitors comply with the policy’s requirements. 

Students found to be in violation of this policy may be subject to discipline in accordance with Rights, Rules, Responsibilities(link is external).

Faculty and staff found to be violation of this policy may be subject to disciplinary actions in accordance with appropriate University policy.

Campus visitors found to be in violation of this policy may be subject to University sanctions, including being banned from campus.

VII.    Related Policies

VII.    Update Log

Endorsed by Environmental Safety and Risk Management Committee: August 24, 2020
Updated August 30, 2020
Updated by ESRM: December 4, 2020
Updated by ESRM: June 17, 2021
Updated by ESRM: July 1, 2021
Updated by ESRM: August 9, 2021
Updated by ESRM: May 9, 2022
Updated by ESRM: July 25, 2022
Rescinded March 31, 2023 by ESRM


For more information, see Frequently Asked Questions about the Visitor Policy.

>Return to COVID-19 Policies, Guidance and FAQs<

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[1] This includes University chaplains, UStore (36 University Place), Credit Union (7 New South), Athletics coaches, Hamilton Physical Therapy, Quest Lab, ROTC staff (on campus), Restaurant Associates, shuttle drivers, docents, ACC (Lakeside), McCarter Theater, HHMI, Center for Jewish Life, etc.

[2] Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, chills, cough, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, congestion, runny nose, fatigue, muscle or body aches, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, or headache that are not related to a non-COVID diagnosis.