Do I Need a Vaccine to Travel to the United States?

Travel into and out of the US has been heavily restricted since the start of the COVID pandemic, with citizens from many countries being completely banned from entering the US for a long time and it will be a while before travel gets back to normal, with the pandemic still raging on.

Every country around the world has their own approach to travel restrictions but most have adopted a policy where the risk of each country is reviewed, based on the current infection rates. However, many countries are looking at whether they can relax travel restrictions for people who have had their COVID vaccinations.

US eased travel restrictions for 61 countries

At the beginning of June, the US eased travel restrictions for 61 countries, which included France, Spain and Italy. This meant that these 61 countries were moved from Level 4 (avoid all travel) to Level 3, which means fully-vaccinated passengers may enter the US. However, travellers from the UK are still banned, which includes anyone who has been in the UK in the last 14 days, unless a specific exemption applies.

The recent G7 meeting included discussing how US-UK travel could be re-opened and airline bosses have been calling for a joint agreement between the countries to get travel going again between the countries. The tourism industries have been heavily affected by the travel restrictions but also business travel and visiting family has been banned, with families desperate to see their relatives from across the Atlantic.

Travel to and from UK

Currently, the UK has strict travel restrictions in place, incorporating a red, amber, green list of countries that are constantly reviewed. Citizens from red list countries are banned unless they are British Nationals, and they are required to take COVID tests as well as pay for a quarantine hotel package to ensure they quarantine for the required amount of time.

The US is currently on the amber list, which means travel is not permitted unless there is special exemption.

Over the next few weeks, the travel and hospitality industries will be hoping that a travel corridor between US and UK can be agreed and that could include the requirement for passengers to be vaccinated. The EU has introduced a digital COVID passport and many travel experts think that this type of system will be integral to enabling people to travel again, for tourism, business and to see relatives.

Currently, the UK is experiencing rising numbers of the Delta variant, so many countries will be waiting to see how the situation plays out before deciding whether to allow UK citizens to enter their country.

Other vaccinations required

For immigrant visas for the US, certain vaccinations are required, including Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Measles, Rubella and Tetanus. The COVID vaccination is not yet a listed requirement but this could be added at some point once the vaccination rollout has been more extensive around the world.



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