Published on : Tuesday, October 19, 2021
The US has decided to reopen its borders for fully-vaccinated travellers from 33 countries, starting November 8. All vaccinated visitors from the 26 so-called Schengen countries in Europe, including France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and Greece, as well as Britain, Ireland, China, India, South Africa, Iran and Brazil will be allowed to enter the US.
The White House said that the move marked a significant relaxation of the country’s coronavirus travel restrictions. The ban on the majority of non-US citizens entering the US has been in place for more than 18 months as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
It was initially put in place by former president Donald Trump, with incumbent Joe Biden recommitting to the ban in January this year. The plan to lift the ban came days after the secretary of homeland security, Alejandro Mayorkas, announced that fully vaccinated people coming from Canada and Mexico would be allowed to travel into the US via land and ferry.
White House Assistant Press Secretary Kevin Munoz said in a statement that the US’s new travel policy requires that vaccination for foreign national travellers to the United States will begin on Nov 8. He mentioned that the announcement and date applies to both international air travel and land travel and the policy is guided by public health, stringent, and consistent.
Several officials also said that people entering the US would be questioned about their vaccination status by Customs and Border Protection as part of the admissions process. Passengers arriving in the country will be expected to present a negative coronavirus test, taken in the 72 hours before their journey.
It was also announced that there would be no quarantine required for visitors entering the country. The US Travel Association’s Chief Executive Roger Dow said the November 8 reopening was critically important for planning for airlines, travel-supported businesses, and millions of travellers across the globe who will now advance plans to visit the United States once again.