A White House official has confirmed that the United States is expected to reopen to foreign nationals from “early November” – but it will only allow entry to travelers who have received both Covid-19 vaccines.
Non-nationals visiting the United States will be required to show full proof of vaccination as well as a negative Covid test taken within three days of departure, said Jeff Zients, pandemic response coordinator for the White House.
“This new system allows us to put in place strict protocols to prevent the spread of Covid from passengers traveling internationally to the United States. Requiring that foreign nationals traveling to the United States be fully immunized is based on public health, ”Zients said at a press briefing Monday. “This is based on individuals rather than a national approach. ”
According to Zients, the changes will go into effect “in early November”, although no formal announcement has been made of an exact date.
Until then, the same travel ban that has been in place for the UK since March 2020 remains.
Here’s everything we know so far.
Who can currently travel to the United States?
Currently, US citizens and those who have the right to reside in the United States can travel there from any country, as well as foreign nationals of all countries except a few excluded by proclamation. January 2021 presidential election – as noted below.
On January 25, President Joe Biden signed a law banning foreign nationals from arriving from several countries, including the United Kingdom, South Africa, Brazil, Ireland and much of Europe, due to worrying variants.
This followed an earlier ban on arrivals from the UK in March 2020, by then-President Donald Trump, which means the US has been closed to British travelers for 18 months.
Here is the full list of countries from which travelers cannot directly access the United States:
- European Schengen area: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia , Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Monaco, San Marino, Vatican City
- United Kingdom: England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
- Republic of Ireland
- South Africa
People from these countries with a compassionate reason to travel to the United States – or whose presence is considered “beneficial” to the American nation – may obtain authorization.
Although many other countries have more severe Covid case counts, the United States has remained open to arrivals from more than 100 other countries.
When will more non-resident travelers be able to enter the United States?
From early November – exact date to be confirmed – the general travel ban will be lifted for fully vaccinated travelers only from the above 36 countries.
This means that foreign nationals from anywhere in the world will be able to visit, provided they can prove their fully immunized status.
Double-punched travelers from these countries will then be able to enter under the normal conditions: presentation of a visa or an Esta (America’s online entry permit). They won’t need to self-quarantine when they arrive.
In addition to proof of vaccination, they will need to present proof of a negative Covid test taken within three days of arrival, wear a mask for the ride, and share their email address and phone number for purposes contact tracing.
The Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention is expected to unveil a contact tracing order that will require airlines to collect this information from travelers entering the United States, with airlines being allowed to retain this information for 30 days, CNN reports.