The Biden administration will require all international travelers entering the United States to be fully vaccinated and tested for Covid-19 under a new system that will open air travel to vaccinated foreign from dozens of countries for the first time since the beginning of the year days of the pandemic.
U.S. to relax Covid travel entry rules, require vaccination for foreign visitors
Beginning in early November, foreign nationals will be able to fly to the U.S. if they are fully vaccinated and can show proof of vaccination before boarding a U.S.-bound flight, White House Covid coordinator Jeffrey Zients said.
The requirement will ease travel restrictions that limited entry to the U.S. in many cases for noncitizens who had recently been to 33 countries, including many European countries and the United Kingdom, regardless of vaccination status.
But for travelers from outside those countries, the new system will set stricter requirements that could pose a hurdle for those living in countries where vaccines are in short supply.
“We will move to this much stricter global system, so we will have a consistent approach in all countries, we will require foreigners to get vaccinated, to prove they are vaccinated and to go through testing and contact-tracing regimens.” said Zients.
The United States will also begin implementing additional testing requirements, he said. Foreign nationals will be required to be tested three days prior to departure to the U.S. AND show a negative test, and unvaccinated Americans will be required to be tested one day prior to departure and will be required to be retested after arrival.
CDC will also require airlines to collect information on each traveler heading to the United States, including their phone number and e-mail address, to help public health officials track contacts.
While there is not yet a vaccination requirement for domestic air travel, Zients said nothing is off the table.