By ZEKE MILLER Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) – In a major easing of travel restrictions in the event of a pandemic, the United States said on Monday it would allow foreigners to enter the country this fall if they had proof of vaccination and a COVID test -19 negative – changes replacing a mishmash of rules that had sidelined many angry non-citizens and allies in Europe and beyond, where there are fewer cases of the virus.
The changes, which take effect in November, will allow families and others who have been separated by travel restrictions for 18 months to plan for long-awaited reunions and allow foreigners with work permits to return to work in states. -United.
Airlines, business groups and travelers applauded – although they have also called the step for a long time.
“It’s a happy day. Big Apple, here I am! Said French entrepreneur Stéphane Le Breton, 45, finally able to book a trip to New York which had been suspended due to virus restrictions.
The new policy will replace a patchwork of travel bans first instituted by President Donald Trump last year and reinforced by President Joe Biden that restrict travel by non-nationals who have stayed in the previous 14 days at the UK, EU, China and India. , Iran, Republic of Ireland, Brazil or South Africa.
White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients announced the new policies, which will still require all foreign travelers to the United States to present proof of vaccination prior to boarding, as well as proof of a negative COVID-19 test performed within three days of the flight. Biden will also tighten testing rules for unvaccinated U.S. citizens, who will need to be tested the day before returning to the U.S., as well as after returning home.