Just in time for the holiday season, the U.S. announced that it will open its borders to fully vaccinated international travelers from 33 countries, beginning November 8. This will be the first time since March 2020 that many foreign tourists will be allowed entry into the country.
Starting Nov. 8, the United States will admit 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.
Non-U.S. air travelers will need to show proof of vaccination and a recent negative COVID-19 test within three days of travel before boarding a flight. Children under 18 are expected to be exempt from the requirements. Airlines will also be required to put in place a contact tracing system.
The new rules, the White House said, will be rolled out in a phased approach. The first phase in early November will require vaccines for “non-essential” trips such as visiting family or tourism. Unvaccinated travelers will still be allowed into the country for “essential” trips as they have been for the last year and a half. A second phase beginning in early January 2022 will require all inbound foreign travelers to be fully vaccinated to enter the United States.
The vaccination stipulation does not apply to U.S. citizens. But the new policy does require unvaccinated Americans to provide proof of a negative result from a test taken within one day of their return flight to the United States, and to test again after they land. The U.S. has not yet mandated vaccines for domestic air travel.
Story credit: Virginia Deparment of Aviation; https://doav.virginia.gov/calendar-and-news/news/2021-september/u.s.-to-open-borders-to-international-travelers-on-nov.-8/