CDC Will Drop Requirement for Negative C0VID Test for International Travelers Into the US From June 12
By Mansur Shaheen | U.S. Deputy Health Editor
Travelers flying into the United States will no longer need proof of a negative covid test to enter starting on June 12.
The Biden Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will drop the requirement on Sunday, according to multiple reports. An announcement is expected Friday afternoon.
Currently, anyone entering the U.S. – even citizens returning home – must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination and negative test which has been certified by a medical professional.
These requirements were first set in January 2021, when the vaccines first started to become available around the world.
While many other nations did have these sorts of requirements at some point, many of America’s peer nations, like the UK, France and Germany, have already dropped these types of recommendations.
Under current rules, a person entering the U.S. must have proof of a negative Covid test taken within 24 hours of travel.
If a person uses a rapid test – which does not require lab certification – then they must have proof of a medical professional witnessing that they did the test properly.
Orders will be lifted at midnight on Sunday morning. International travelers will still be required to show proof of vaccine.
Many in the travel industry have pushed for these orders to be lifted, and while later than some had hoped, the White House seems to finally be budging of lifting virus orders.
It is coming later than many had expected, though. The UK lifted all requirements for vaccinated travelers in February, just a week after nearby France did as well. Germany removed orders earlier this week.
The move will remove one of the last remaining COVID-19 orders in America, as much of the nation moves on from the pandemic.
Last month, a federal court lifted a CDC requirement for masks on public transportation, whether planes, trains or busses.
‘Today marks another huge step forward for the recovery of inbound air travel and the return of international travel to the United States,’ Roger Dow, presidents of the U.S. Travel Association, said in a statement.
‘International inbound travel is vitally important to businesses and workers across the country who have struggled to regain losses from this valuable sector.’
A survey published by the group last month found that nearly half of people who are unlikely to travel internationally in the next year will not do so over testing mandates.
Around 54 percent of international travelers also reported that they would be less likely to travel to the U.S. out of fears that a sudden negative test disrupts their travel plans.
‘Lifting this policy will help encourage and restore air travel to the United States, benefiting communities across the country that rely heavily on travel and tourism to support their local economies,’ Nicholas Calio, CEO of Airlines for America, said in an email statement to DailyMail.com.
‘We are eager to welcome the millions of travelers who are ready to come to the U.S. for vacation, business and reunions with loved ones.’
The change comes months after many cities and counties around America lifted indoor mask orders, as the virus receded coming off of a massive winter Omicron surge.
Many Americans are starting to move on from Covid as well, as deaths have sat below the four figure mark through out spring and early summer.
The U.S. is currently averaging 107,904 cases every day, but only 397 cases – a figure significantly smaller than other points in the pandemic when the country was recording six figure daily case marks.
As a result, Americans have shown less worry about Covid, with many choosing to move on with their lives as if the pandemic is over.
A Gallup poll published last month found that only 31 percent of Americans report being either ‘somewhat worried’ or ‘very worried’ about catching COVID-19, a three percent drop from version of the poll that was conducted in February.
Within that group, 17 percent of Americans said they were ‘very worried’ about Covid still, a five percent drop.
The poll signals the shifting state of the virus as America approaches the summer months. In previous years, the warm weather months have come with large, devastating virus surges.
The survey was conducted in mid-April, when the trend of declining cases that had existed for nearly three months to that point coming off of the mid-January peak of the winter Omicron surge began to reverse.