Travel Restrictions: New Update!

Starting in early November, the U.S. will lift travel restrictions for some foreign nationals who are fully vaccinated. This applies to travelers from the 26 European Schengen countries, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Brazil, China, Iran, India and South Africa.

Existing requirements for permission to travel to the US remain, such as ESTA authorization or the issuance of a visa. Additionally, proof of full vaccination must be presented, as well a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours prior to departure. Airlines will be required to collect contact tracing data from passengers traveling to the US, such as phone numbers and email addresses.

The travel ban began in 2020 under the Trump administration in an effort to curb the spread of the virus, and was continued under the Biden administration as the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant saw a steep rise in the levels of coronavirus cases.

The lifting of the ban should see an increase in demand for international travel. “International travel is critical to connecting family and friends, to fueling small and large businesses, to promoting the open exchange of ideas and culture” said Jeffrey D. Zients, the White House pandemic coordinator.

The CDC will be issuing a formal order providing the details of the new rules, the date they will go into effect, and clarification as to which vaccines will be accepted. Exceptions to the vaccination requirement include children who are not yet eligible to receive the shots.