The US Reopens Borders to Vaccinated Travelers in November

After an 18-month travel ban, the United States will reopen its borders to international travelers.

According to a White House Official, individuals fully vaccinated against COVID-19 may enter the country beginning November 8, 2021. The administration is taking a science-based approach to combat the pandemic and uses it as a guide to enhance the safety of international air travel.

The US Reopens Boarders to Vaccinated Travelers in November
Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

New U.S. Travel Policy

White House spokesman Kevin Munoz confirmed via Twitter that the new U.S. travel policy requires foreign national travelers to be fully vaccinated before entering. “This announcement and date apply to both international air travel and land travel. This policy is guided by public health, stringent, and consistent,” he added.

Foreign nationals flying to the United States must provide proof of vaccination and negative coronavirus test within three days of arrival. Unvaccinated foreigners will be prohibited from entering the country, with a few exceptions. Unvaccinated Americans returning from abroad must provide a negative coronavirus test one day before arrival and prove that they purchased a testing kit.

Vaccines Approved by the WHO

When the travel restrictions are lifted, the U.S. will allow entry to individuals who received vaccines approved by the World Health Organization (WHO). “Six vaccines that are FDA authorized/approved or listed for emergency use by WHO will meet the criteria for travel to the U.S.,” reported Reuters. This includes Pfizer-BioTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson, which are the vaccines approved for use in the country.

In addition, the WHO has also approved the AstraZeneca/Oxford, the Sinopharm, and the Sinovac vaccine. They conclude that these “met the necessary criteria for safety and efficacy.” Exempted from the requirements are children under 18.

The travel ban during the pandemic cost the U.S. more than $250 billion in lost revenue, according to the U.S. Travel Association. Hopefully, the tourism industry slowly recovers as airlines have witnessed increases in international ticket sales in recent weeks.

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