THE United States is set to relax restrictions for foreign air travelers who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the White House announced on Monday, September 20.
Beginning in November, international travelers will be allowed to enter the United States by showing proof of full vaccination before boarding the U.S.-bound flight. This includes countries previously under a travel ban since early 2020 — which were implemented during the Trump administration — including visitors from China, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, 29 regions of the European Schengen region, Iran, Brazil, South Africa and India.
The U.S. is also requiring a negative COVID-19 test within three days of departure.
Non-U.S. citizens who were in the countries within the past 14 days have not been allowed entry into the U.S. as part of pandemic-related restrictions.
“This vaccination requirement deploys the best tool we have in our arsenal to keep people safe and prevent the spread of the virus,” said White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeff Zients. “Vaccines continue to show that they’re highly effective, including against the delta variant, and the new system allows us to implement strict protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is slated to issue a contact tracing plan for travelers visiting the U.S. to monitor a potential spread.
“This will enable CDC and state and local public health officials to follow up with inbound travelers and those around them if someone has potentially been exposed to COVID-19 and other pathogens,” Zients said, according to CNN.
The U.S. will accept travelers who were fully vaccinated with any vaccines approved for emergency use by the World Health Organization, the Associated Press reported. (AJPress)