The United Kingdom has dropped its COVID testing requirement for inbound travelers. In addition, Japan has allowed international tour groups to enter its country, and the U.S. has decided to eliminate its pre-departure COVID test requirement. As we’ve seen in other travel-related news, the decision to remove the COVID testing requirement has a number of implications for businesses and individuals.
United Kingdom abandons COVID testing requirement for inbound travelers
The United Kingdom will soon abolish the COVID testing requirement for inbound travelers. As of 4 a.m. Friday, the new rules will apply to anyone over 12 years of age, regardless of vaccination status. Additionally, the new requirements will no longer require travelers to self-isolate upon arrival. In addition, travelers will only need a lateral flow test and a PCR test if they have a positive test.
If you do not have a current vaccination, you should still follow the rules regarding the disease. If you are not immune to this disease, you should wear a face mask or a hat in indoor public spaces, such as public transportation. Also, you should consider delaying your trip if you have any type of weakened immune system. It’s best to follow the United Kingdom’s guidelines when it comes to COVID testing and vaccination.
The UK government has also loosened travel restrictions. Those from “green list” countries no longer need to undergo the Covid-19 test. In addition, there will be no quarantine upon arrival. Instead, they can get a cheaper test two days after arriving. The updated guidelines also exclude travelers from South America and south Asia. The new regulations are not a replacement for vaccination programs in those countries, but rather a precautionary measure to protect UK citizens.
Following the announcement, the United Kingdom is easing its travel restrictions, including the requirement for travelers to be fully vaccinated before taking off. However, a weakened COVID testing requirement will still apply to all travelers, so it’s important to make sure that you are fully vaccinated before flying. Even so, the announcement comes on the eve of a meeting between Biden and Johnson.
In the wake of the outbreak, many airlines and hotels have stopped requiring COVID tests before leaving the U.K. The change comes into effect on Sunday and will apply to inbound travelers to all airports. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will monitor the situation based on science and circulating variants. It will be interesting to see if the new rules will be reinstated in 90 days.
While the updated policy is beneficial for travellers, the CDC still recommends COVID testing before international flights. While it has become an important safety measure, a large number of travelers have found creative ways around it. For example, several Canadian teams in the National Hockey League took buses into the U.S. to avoid having to miss their flight. The Associated Press contributed to the story. Further, the new rules also have a positive impact on the health of Americans and international travelers.
Japan allows international tour groups to enter country
The decision by the US administration to drop the COVID testing requirement for international travelers came after an industry battle. The Biden administration had banned most foreign travelers from entering the United States, but the decision was reversed in November. Nonetheless, most noncitizens traveling to the U.S. will still need to show proof of their Covid-19 vaccination. Although a federal judge blocked the Biden administration’s mask rule, the Department of Justice appealed the ruling.
The decision to remove the COVID testing requirement for international travelers follows the lobbying of travel industry officials and lawmakers. While initially supporting the requirement in an effort to reopen the country, they have now become vocal in their desire to see it removed. The travel industry has written to the White House’s coronavirus response coordinator to urge the administration to stop testing. While many countries have opted to drop their COVID-19 testing requirement, the United States remains the only major country to require travelers to show a negative test for entry.
A recent report shows that US airline companies have been actively lobbying for the removal of the Covid testing requirement, which had been in place since January. Although the number of reported cases has fallen sharply since then, it has recently risen again, and a vaccination program has helped stem the rise in deaths. Despite these challenges, demand for travel services has been surging as the pandemic worries dissipated. This week, Japan opened its borders to tour groups, but not individuals.
CDC officials say they will continue to monitor the latest science related to the pandemic and re-evaluate the testing requirement. In the meantime, the government will enforce its vaccination rules and non-vaccinated travelers will continue to be barred from traveling to the country. As long as travelers are vaccinated, however, the Biden administration’s decision should speed up the recovery of the U.S. travel industry.
After a year of fierce lobbying by the travel and airline industries, the U.S. has decided to lift the requirement for people arriving by air to present a negative COVID-19 test before they board their plane. According to CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, the decision to remove the testing requirement was made based on science and will be reassessed in 90 days. The travel industry and the CDC fought hard to eliminate the rule.
Following the overturned COVID-19 pre-departure testing requirement, the CDC will now plan to re-impose the requirement for fully vaccinated visitors to the U.S., following the United Kingdom’s example. Meanwhile, the requirements for land-based travel and ferry terminals will remain unchanged. Vaccinated travelers will no longer be required to undergo pre-arrival Covid testing.
U.S. drops pre-departure testing requirement for inbound travelers
The change may have been a welcome relief for some travel industry stakeholders, including the airline industry. After months of a strong domestic travel market, the end of the COVID testing requirement could increase interest in international destinations. However, travelers may feel hesitant to travel to countries with high rates of disease outbreaks due to the Covid test. Some airlines have been rethinking their travel policies to accommodate travelers with positive results. The U.S. has been one of the few countries to mandate a positive test before allowing inbound travelers to fly.
On June 12 the Biden administration announced that it would be lifting the requirement for COVID testing prior to travel. The policy had been a vexing burden for travelers and stymied travel. Despite its widespread unpopularity, many travel industry advocates had hoped for the change as the requirement discouraged bookings and threatened to strand families. Nevertheless, the CDC said it would review the decision after 90 days and would not hesitate to reinstate the requirement.
Airlines for America, the trade association representing airlines, argued that dropping the requirement would lead to an increase in foreign visitors to the US. According to the association, international travel had decreased by 14 per cent and domestic travel had nearly recovered to pre-pandemic levels. However, the business travel association said that international travel was up to 17 percent lower than before the pandemic.
The move to eliminate the COVID test requirement for inbound travelers follows similar moves in other countries. Last month, the United Kingdom and Germany opted out of the COVID test requirement for inbound travelers, despite the ongoing controversy over the requirement. Although it is still unclear whether the rule will be permanently lifted, the airlines for America president, Nicholas E. Calio, praised the move.
Since the change in the COVID test requirement, the airline industry has been lobbying against the change. The CDC’s announcement has been widely reported in the media, and it is expected to take effect at midnight on Sunday for air travelers headed to the US. In fact, airlines have been lobbying against the policy for months. Ultimately, the decision is up to the CDC, but the airline industry and other stakeholders are happy about this move.
The CDC notes that pre-departure testing may help slow the spread of the virus. While it won’t prevent the spread of the disease inside the U.S., it has reduced the number of people flying infected into the country, preventing the risk of infection for inbound travelers. Moreover, this measure is effective but will not catch all cases, says Smith.