Multiple reports suggest that the United States will soon be reopening travel for foreign visitors who have been fully vaccinated. White House COVID-19 response coordinator Jeff Zients explained the rough outline of the plan, although details have yet to be finalized. He said that the new rules would likely take effect in early November in order to give airlines and travel operators time to prepare.
Presently, travel bans exist for visitors from a number of European and other nations. After the new policies begin, travelers will have to be fully vaccinated and submit to testing before arrival. Unvaccinated Americans returning home will be required to have testing, and there may be quarantining involved.
Airlines will be expected to be an integral part of the plan, including enforcing the rules and collecting data from passengers regarding their vaccine status and travel arrangements. Zients said this will “enable CDC and state and local public health officials to follow up with inbound travelers and those around them if someone has potentially been exposed to Covid-19 and other pathogens.” He added that these methods will be used more broadly going forward to help protect “against any future public health threats.”
A number of issues remain to be addressed. Namely, with more than 200,000 illegal migrant contacts each month at the southern border, how effective will these new restrictions be at bringing down the COVID case numbers? Also, travel guidelines between nations are usually made on a reciprocal basis. With American citizens presently free to enter Europe with only testing, will these nations see the move as an unacceptable imbalance?
Liberty Nation will keep you updated on this developing story.