The Spirit of Alpinism

(360) 671-1505 [email protected]

Coronavirus Policy

Updated October 7, 2022

Please check back regularly for updates.

American Alpine Institute’s regular programming is underway in all our locations. We continue to closely monitor the international and local health conditions in all areas where we have operations, and we continue to refine our policies and procedures to limit the spread of Covid-19.

Note that AAI’s vaccination requirement has been suspended. Proof of vaccination will not be required for new registrations submitted before April 30, 2023 at the earliest. AAI’s pre-trip Covid testing policy remains in effect. Please see our Operational Changes for Covid-19 page for details.

It is important to note that the COVID-19 pandemic still rages in many parts of the world, including parts of the United States. The growth of variant strains of the virus makes the future course of the pandemic unpredictable. Vaccination remains the single best thing you can do to protect yourself and your loved ones. American Alpine Institute will continue to enforce policies that help to limit spread, while easing some of these policies where appropriate.

Please call our office at (360) 671-1505 for more information, as our many permit areas in North America are each subject to individual federal, state, and local reopening guidelines and rapidly changing public health conditions.

Sunsetting of Covid Postponement Policy

Updated February 18, 2022

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, we adopted a flexible trip postponement policy to help reduce our clients’ financial exposure and to reduce the pressure to attend a trip when public health conditions imposed high risks. Many of our clients have made use of this policy during the pandemic, and we will continue to hold credit for them with no expiration and no restriction on the programs to which that credit may be applied.

At the time that we instituted the policy, the future course of the pandemic was highly unpredictable, and trip insurance that covered Covid-related cancellations at first was hard to find. Over the last two years, however, the advent of vaccines, the availability of effective treatments, and other factors have reduced the unknown risks.  It’s now clear that we can keep running trips during the pandemic while taking reasonable measures to control the risks to our clients and staff. In addition, many travel insurance providers now treat Covid the same way they treat other illnesses.

For this reason, beginning February 19, 2022, AAI no longer offers a no-cost postponement policy for COVID-19-related reasons. Going forward, participants who desire financial protection in case of illness, or fear of illness, will need to self-insure or obtain private trip insurance, and new registrations will be subject to AAI’s normal Terms and Conditions.

For clients who registered on or before February 18, 2022, we will continue to honor the flexible postponement policy, according to which you need to keep up payments under the normal Terms and Conditions and notify us in a timely way if you wish to request a postponement.

Travel Insurance

As with any significant investment, an investment in travel plans should have some form of insurance to limit your financial risk.  A travel insurance policy from a reputable company such as Ripcord is one way to do this.  Some people may prefer instead to self-insure, or absorb possible losses themselves.  Travel insurance is an integral component of AAI’s financial model.  We expect our participants to choose carefully whether to purchase travel insurance or to self-insure, and to bear the cost either way.  Financially, we feel it is the safest, most prudent thing to do.

A note for those who choose to purchase a travel insurance policy:  As of the winter of 2020, AAI’s recommended travel insurance provider, Ripcord, offered a "cancel for any reason" option that may cover trip cancellation due to “personal reasons”, even if those reasons are related to Covid-19. Many policies without a “cancel for any reason” rider may not cover Covid-19 cancellations if the policy was purchased after December 31, 2019.  As always, there are many differences between travel insurance policies, products, and exclusions, and it is important for you to consult your insurer for further details.

Business Hours

Our administrative offices have resumed regular business hours, 9 – 5:30 (Pacific time), Monday – Friday.

For More Information

For authoritative information about the COVID-19 outbreak and coronavirus disease, please see the resources on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, including


If you are ready to register now, please follow the link below to our online registration form.
We sure look forward to having you with us!

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