US to drop evidence of negative COVID test for travelers
The Biden administration reportedly plans to announce today that travelers to the United States will no longer need to present proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within a day of their flight to the States. States to enter the country.
The rule, which applies to all travelers regardless of nationality, will be lifted at 12:01 a.m. Sunday, according to a senior administration official quoted by CNN earlier in the day.
Officials say they will reassess the situation in 90 days to see if the requirement is still no longer necessary.
As a growing number of Americans vacationed overseas in recent months, they complied with US requirements before boarding their flights home. This has often meant scrambling for viral tests at foreign clinics and then uploading the results to their airline’s websites. (When flights are delayed, travelers have an additional 24 hours to use the same test results.) In some cases, travelers have found themselves quarantined at their destinations, at their own expense, after testing positive. (As an alternative to testing, travelers could also offer proof of recent recovery from COVID-19.)
Members of the travel industry, eager to reduce barriers to the economic recovery of travel, have vigorously lobbied federal officials to drop this requirement. Earlier this month, a group of some 260 travel organizations and companies – including Disney, American Airlines and the United States Chamber of Commerce – sent a letter this month to the COVID-19 Response Coordinator of White House Dr Ashish Jha, who called for the repeal of the testing rule, and insisted: “The wide array of public health tools to effectively manage COVID-19, combined with quality ventilation systems hospitable on board planes and the requirement for vaccinations on arrival, has also made international air travel safer than ever.”