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Can I travel to the United States right now?


As we all know that a lot of parts of the world have not recovered from the pandemic due to COVID-19 and since the United States have known to have the most powerful reforms, it also has restrictions entering the country because of the spread of the virus. The country has issued strict guidelines which also mandates the negative PCR test to enter the US.

Travelling to the United States in 2021

Travelling anywhere is unsafe due to the virus having new strains and its spread, currently, Europe and Africa are looking towards another possible lockdown to stop the spread of the virus causing a second wave. Even France and United Kingdom set records for cases coming out daily for Covid-19 and leaders in the united states have learnt lessons about the spread in other countries, and took strict actions against travelling to the US to prevent the spread. World Health Organisation has given safety measures from preventing the catch of virus.

Plane wing
Photo by Ross Parmly on Unsplash

Following the protocol as of 26th April given by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is crucial to note the people whocan travel to the United States. The people who are foreign nationals who have visited India, Iran, China, the European Schengen area(Belgium, Austria, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Finland, Denmark, Germany, Vatican City, San Marino, Monaco, Switzerland, Sweden, Spain, Slovenia, Slovakia, Portugal, Poland, Norway, Netherlands, Malta, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Liechtenstein, Latvia, Italy, Iceland, Hungary and Greece), Republic of Ireland, United Kingdom, South Africa or Brazil in the last 14 days cannot enter the united states.

Whosoever, including all foreign nationals and U.S. Citizens, travelling through the airlines must show a copy of the Negative test, those who fail to provide the documentation of being negative or of recovery from the virus will not be allowed to board the flight. Passengers that were allowed to enter must isolate themselves for a minimum of 7 days after arrival and need to get their Covid-19 test done after 3-5 days of arrival. The test before boarding the airlines must be done using a sample viral test (NAAT tests such as a PCR test, or antigen test).

As of 2nd of April, travelling guidelines were updated by the CDC for people who are vaccinated:

  • Those who are fully vaccinated are allowed to travel within the United States without a covid-19 test and also with no requirement of quarantine after arrival as long as they take proper cautions to avoid the spread or catching the virus themselves, for example, wearing a mask, maintaining social distance from others, voiding crowds, washing hands properly and using a hand sanitiser when in public or before eating food.
  • Individuals who are vaccinated completely are allowed to travel all over the world without the requirement of a COVID-19 negative test prior to travelling unless the US requires it.
  • Individuals who are completely vaccinated are not required to be self-quarantined posterior getting back to the US unless the local or state jurisdictions require it.
  • The individuals who are vaccinated fully would still be needed to possess a negative result of the COVID-19 test prior to boarding in a flight that has the US as its destination as well as obtain a test 3-5 days prior to their return from international travels.
  • People who are completely vaccinated must continue to take the precautions associated with COVID-19 as they travel internationally.

The US-Canada, as well as the US-Mexico land borders, are closes for non-essential travelling till 21 May and until further notice. This means that the travels can only be related to cargo, medications, education, work-related, military, supply chain, trucks, etc., which are considered to be essential by the government for crossing the borders.

US Travel Restrictions based on Territory or State

While there are national restrictions associated with travelling to the United States due to the spread of the COVID-19 virus, there are restrictions by territories and states as well, which must be followed in order to enter those particular states or territories. The most important restriction among these is the mandate of face masks on public transportations including trains, subways, buses, and plains. Further, the states’ restriction guidelines vary from each other based on the spike in cases in those particular states. For instance, Alaska requires the travellers to have completed a Self-Isolation Plan and a Travel Declaration Form in the Alaska Travel Portal.

The Bottom Line

The spread of the virus has led to a number of restrictions associated with inter-state travelling as well as international travelling. Therefore, the United States has also imposed certain restrictions for travelling as well. So if you are willing to travel to the US right now, you must see the above-mentioned guidelines for deciding if you are eligible for travel to the United States or not.