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US Announces Reopening Date for Vaccinated International Travelers
The United States government announced it would lift international travel restrictions on fully vaccinated foreign nationals arriving via land borders and commercial airlines, effective November 8.
According to Reuters.com, the U.S. will soon allow fully vaccinated foreign air travelers from the 26 Schengen countries in Europe—including France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and Greece—as well as Britain, Ireland, China, India, South Africa, Iran and Brazil.
Foreign travelers will need to show proof of a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-approved vaccination and a recent negative COVID-19 test before boarding a flight to America. International visitors crossing a land border will no longer be required to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test.
On September 20, the White House revealed the travel restrictions would be lifted in November, but no precise date was announced at the time. The ban on non-essential travel at land borders has been in place since March 2020.
Earlier this week, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said President Joe Biden and his administration would “begin allowing travelers from Mexico and Canada who are fully vaccinated for COVID-19 to enter the U.S. for non-essential purposes, including to visit friends and family or for tourism, via land and ferry border crossings.”
Unvaccinated travelers from Canada, Mexico and all other approved countries will not be allowed in the U.S. The CDC said it would only accept vaccines authorized by U.S. regulators or the World Health Organization.
U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow issued the following statement on the reopening announcement:
“U.S. Travel has long called for the safe reopening of our borders, and we welcome the Biden administration’s announcement of a set date to welcome back vaccinated international travelers.”
“The date is critically important for planning—for airlines, for travel-supported businesses, and for millions of travelers worldwide who will now advance plans to visit the United States once again. Reopening to international visitors will provide a jolt to the economy and accelerate the return of travel-related jobs that were lost due to travel restrictions.”
“We applaud the administration for recognizing the value of international travel to our economy and our country, and for working to safely reopen our borders and reconnect America to the world.”
World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) CEO Julia Simpson also released a statement:
“It is great news that the U.S. will reopen its borders to fully-vaccinated travelers from the UK and EU from Nov 8. It has been a long time coming, but Travel & Tourism businesses on both sides of the Atlantic will be breathing a sigh of relief.”
“Visitors from the EU and the UK contributed more than $46 billion to the U.S economy in 2019, showing just how critical this move will be to the U.S recovery.”
“WTTC believe governments should axe red lists completely, and instead base the risk on individuals rather than entire countries.”