US to reopen borders to fully vaccinated foreign travelers after 20-month ban

Almost 20 months after the entry ban, the United States is reopening its air borders to fully vaccinated foreign tourists starting Monday. Former US President Donald Trump issued a travel restriction to curb the COVID-19 outbreak, which has widely affected non-US nationals of more than 30 countries, as well as the UK and member states of the EU, causing the separation of families and the cessation of tourism.

Airlines are expected to face a surge in tourists as restrictions are relaxed for people who have been fully vaccinated and tested, the BBC reported. Under the new guidelines, foreign travelers must be “fully vaccinated” and will be required to produce proof of vaccination before traveling. Both paper and digital documents are acceptable. It is the duty of airline authorities to collect and confirm this information from passengers.

New guidelines for foreign travelers to the United States

In addition, vaccinations are not mandatory for children under 18 to travel. A negative COVID-19 test is also required for air travel. All fully vaccinated air travelers aged 2 years and over, regardless of country, should be tested. Within three days of their departing flight to the United States, travelers must test negative for COVID-19. There will be no need for quarantine.

U.S. citizens who have yet to receive the vaccine and a small number of unvaccinated foreign visitors are excluded from the vaccination mandate and yet they must take a negative COVID-19 test within one day of arriving in the United States. According to CNN, several airlines offer mobile apps and portals on their websites where vaccination and testing information can be processed digitally.

Certain restrictions in certain states and municipalities in the United States

Although most of the United States has opened its doors to foreign visitors, some states and municipalities still have certain limitations. Hawaii, Illinois, New Mexico, Nevada, and Oregon are some of the places that still have mask laws. Masks are also required in indoor public places in Washington, DC and Puerto Rico. Vaccination mandates for indoor public places, such as restaurants, are in place in several jurisdictions, including New York and San Francisco, according to CNN.

Additionally, all vaccinations certified by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the World Health Organization will be permitted for air travel, according to U.S. health officials. AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, Pfizer / BioNTech, Covaxin, Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines are the approved COVID vaccines for foreign travelers.

(Photo: AP)

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