Covid-19: US eases travel restrictions for 61 countries
Only fully vaccinated people advised to travel to the UAE, Oman, Qatar
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has eased its travel recommendations for 61 countries by moving them from its highest “Level 4” rating that had discouraged all travel to recommending travel for fully vaccinated individuals, the agency confirmed on Tuesday.
The new ratings, which were not previously reported and posted on a CDC website on Monday, lower 61 countries to “Level 3”. These include France, South Africa, Canada, Mexico, Russia, Spain and Italy. The UAE, Oman and Qatar are included in Level 3, where travel is recommended for fully vaccinated individuals. A US State Department official said it was in the process of revising its travel advisor to reflect the CDC changes. The CDC said it has also revised its rating for the United States to “Level 3.”
However, India, Pakistan Saudi Arabia and many other countries remain on Level 4, to where travel should be avoided.
The CDC said the new criteria for a Level 4 “avoid all travel” recommendation has changed from 100 cases per 100,000 to 500 cases per 100,000. The CDC added that many countries have lower ratings “because of the criteria changes or because their outbreaks are better controlled.” The CDC added it expects more countries to get lower ratings.
Other countries being lowered to “Level 3” include Honduras, Indonesia, Jordan, Libya, Panama, Poland, Denmark and Malaysia.
Many of the countries that now have lower ratings remain on the US government’s list of countries subject to severe travel restrictions — and most have been subject to the restrictions since early 2020.
The United States bars nearly all non-US citizens who have been in China, the United Kingdom, Ireland, India, South Africa, Brazil, Iran and the 26 Schengen nations in Europe without border controls within the previous 14 days.
On May 24, the State Department had urged against travel to Japan, citing a new wave of coronavirus cases before the Tokyo Olympics are set to begin July 23.
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