COVID-19 FAQs

We appreciate your understanding and support as the university works to protect Texas together and navigates changes in the public health environment. This page will help provide the information you need about our operations and will be updated regularly.

Announcements

What communication has University Housing and Dining sent to residents?

March 10, 2022 – COVID-19 self-test kit availability
Jan. 28, 2022 – Housing and Dining updates for Jan. 31
Jan. 11, 2022 – COVID-19 Testing for Spring 2022 (Dobie Twenty21)
Jan. 7, 2022 – Residence Hall and Dining Updates
Jan. 7, 2022 - Spring reminders and updates for 2400 Nueces
Dec. 23, 2021 – Housing Headlines: Spring Semester Updates
Dec. 17, 2021 – COVID-19 Testing for Spring 2022

Safety Protocols

How are decisions being made about the spring 2022 semester?

University Housing and Dining follows the university campus closures and COVID-19 guidance. Learn more about what the university is doing to protect Texas together. You can also view announcements from President Hartzell and the university for the latest communication.

If I test positive for COVID-19, can I stay in the residence halls?

Student Emergency Services (SES) will work directly with students who test positive to identify the best option for them. Our staff will connect the student with SES to ensure the student has a space to isolate.

What do I do if I think I might have COVID-19?

Students who are concerned they have COVID-19 should immediately contact University Health Services (UHS). Students can contact the UHS Nurse Advice Line 24/7 at 512-475-6877 to find out any necessary next steps.

For more information about COVID-19, visit the UHS website.

Will a COVID-19 vaccination be required for students living on campus?

The university is encouraging all students, faculty and staff to get vaccinated to protect themselves and others from COVID-19.

What is the notification process for COVID-19 positive tests in the residence halls?

The university is continuing to do robust contact tracing which consists of case investigation and notifying close contacts.

What if my roommate tests positive for COVID-19?

Following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, individuals who are exposed to an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 and are not fully vaccinated will be directed to self-quarantine.

Students should contact the Behavior Concerns and COVID-19 Advice Line at 512-232-5050 for assistance if they can’t self-isolate or quarantine safely in their residence — whether living in on or off campus spaces.

Visit the Protect Texas Together website for more health and wellness guidance.

What steps are being taken for students’ health and safety?

University Housing and Dining is implementing policies and practices in alignment with the university’s health and safety guidelines. Facilities staff is taking precautions to ensure staff have appropriate personal protective equipment prior to working on the floors and entering student rooms to perform work.

How are the shared facilities being cleaned?

Our facilities staff are cleaning and disinfecting daily. All high touch areas, such as door handles, faucet handles, flush handles, elevator buttons and drinking fountains are disinfected a minimum of three times daily. All study area furniture and table tops are disinfected a minimum of two times daily.

Will students be required to wear protective face masks in the residence halls and dining venues?

Per university guidelines, masks are optional but strongly recommended indoors regardless of vaccination status.

What steps are being taken to ensure staff members are staying healthy and following guidelines?

University Housing and Dining is implementing policies and practices in alignment with University health and wellness guidelines.

How does social distancing work in community bathrooms?

Plexiglass dividers have been placed between sinks in community bathrooms.

All showers are single-occupant facilities.

Am I allowed to have a guest in my room?

Residents will be permitted to host one guest at a time in the residence halls.

Residents need to check in guests at the front desk.

If the resident has a roommate, the roommate must agree that the guest can stay.

Guest stays are limited to no more than 72 consecutive hours in any given seven-day period.

As with our current policy on Personal Responsibility, the resident is responsible for the guest’s conduct, and the guest must follow all University Housing and Dining policies, including those related to COVID-19.

If a guest’s conduct violates university and/or University Housing and Dining policies, the guest may be asked to leave, and policy violations will be referred to Student Conduct and Academic Integrity in the Office of the Dean of Students.

Dining

What if I’m unable to go to the dining hall due to a health-related concern?

Any student who lives in an on-campus residence hall with an active meal plan is eligible to use the Resident Meal Request Program to access meals during short-term periods when they are unable to visit the dining hall due to health-related concerns.

Residents are able to pre-select meal options from a pre-determined menu using our online ordering form. Each meal request covers one meal period, costs one meal swipe and will be available for pick up at either J2 or Kins Dining. Please see the online ordering form for more details about when to place orders and pick-up windows.

A designated person, other than the resident placing the request, should pick up the meal during assigned pick-up windows to allow the student to rest in their room.

If additional assistance is needed, please contact J2 Dining at 512-471-5095 or Kins Dining at 512-471-8058.

How does a student living in the residence halls get food if they need to self-quarantine?

Residents who are in quarantine can pick up food to go from the dining venues.

If a resident tests positive for COVID-19, Student Emergency Services (SES) will work directly with student to identify the best option for them.

How does dining on campus work with the resident unlimited meal plan?

Residents can use their unlimited meal plan as many times a day as they choose to dine in at the buffet-style dining halls - Jester City Limits, J2 and Kins Dining.

Residents also receive $300 Dine In Dollars per semester and $200 in Bevo Pay funds to spend at UHD operated locations and merchants participating in Bevo Pay

How are dining operations supporting the health and safety of the UT Austin community?

Hand sanitizing stations are available throughout the serving and seating areas.

There are sneeze guards between patrons and dining staff at all serving lines.

Can I see the menus before entering the dining locations?

Patrons can view the online menu before visiting the dining locations.

What if I have a dietary concern?

We believe that menu transparency is an important part of the dining experience, especially for those who follow a specific diet plan. Our online menu provides nutrition facts, ingredients and allergen information in addition to weekly menus.

It is recommended that all students with a dietary concern speak with one our registered dietitian at dietitian@austin.utexas.edu for guidance and support managing their diet while on campus.

Can I get my meals to go?

You can get your meals to go from the dining halls with the Eco2Go program. Learn more here.

Meals can be taken to go from Cypress Bend Cafe, Jesta’ Pizza and Littlefield Patio Cafe.

What are my dining options on campus?

To learn more about our dining options, view our locations, menus and hours of operation.

Are meal plans available to students who live off campus, faculty and staff?

Students living off campus, faculty and staff can sign up for our Commuter Meal Plan and enjoy hot meals at the dining halls plus additional Dine In Dollars to spend at on-campus restaurants, coffee shops and convenience stores. View the three Commuter Meal Plan options and sign up here.

Faculty and staff can also sign up for Dine In Dollars. Learn more here.

Housing Contracts

Am I able to cancel my housing contract for COVID-19 related reasons?

All cancellation requests require approval from our housing office. Cancellation fees may apply. If a student wishes to cancel their contract, they are asked to contact our office at housing@austin.utexas.edu, or request to speak with someone by calling 512-471-3136.

If I want to change rooms, are there still spaces available?

Students have access to the room change request form through their housing portals. We will work through requests in the order they’re received.

Are accommodations available if it is medically necessary for me to have a single occupancy room?

If a student has a medical or disability-related need that impacts where they will live, they need to indicate the type of accommodation they require in the space provided on their housing application. Students need to submit a request and documentation to Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD). They will review the documentation provided and forward our office the recommendations regarding housing accommodations. All documentation will be kept confidential within the SSD office. Please refer to the housing and dining accommodations page for the complete accommodation request process.

What is the best way for me to get a question answered about my housing contract?

For questions regarding housing, please contact our office as soon as possible. For quicker responses, email us at housing@austin.utexas.edu, or request to speak with a housing representative by calling 512-471-3136.

Resident Opportunities

How can residents get involved in the residence hall community?

The University Housing and Dining Residence Life staff is working hard to provide residents with a variety of engagement opportunities. 

Each resident is assigned a resident assistant (RA) who can help students find ways to be involved in the halls and on campus.

The Residence Hall Programming Team (RHPT) helps foster community for the residents with peer-planned events. Residents will be informed about events via social media, posters and marketing materials in the halls. Residents are encouraged to follow @utrhpt on Instagram to learn more about upcoming events.

The University Residence Hall Association represents all residence halls on campus, and each individual residence hall has its own Residence Hall Council. These leadership organizations advocate for the students of their halls and provide engagement opportunities for residents.

Living the Longhorn Life is an initiative from the Vice President of Student Affairs engaging Longhorn students through community-building, events and traditions. Follow @livingthelonghornlife on Instagram to learn about upcoming events happening on campus.