0 min left

Increased COVID-19 Testing Required for All International Travelers

Customs and Border Patrol

Regardless of nationality, everyone entering the United States must now take a COVID-19 test one day before entry.
With concerns that the COVID-19 Omicron variant could spread rampantly into the United States, the White House is now requiring all travelers to get tested for the virus prior to re-entry.


Under new guidance issued by the Biden administration, everyone entering the United States from a foreign country must be tested within one day of departure.


New Testing Protocol Required for All Entrants – Americans Included

With the plan, all travelers who are coming into the United States must provide results from a COVID-19 test within one day of departure globally. This includes U.S. citizens, residents and those who have already been inoculated against the virus. The announcement from the White House did not indicate which tests would be accepted for entry.


The increased testing is one part of an increased response to the Omicron variant, with the hopes of preventing its spread in the United States. In the days leading up to the announcement, the U.S. severely restricted entry from South Africa and several other African nations “in the region where it was confirmed to be spreading quickly.”


However, scientists have already confirmed that the Omicron variant has already arrived on American shores. CNBC reports at least two COVID-19 cases from the Omicron variant have been found in California and Minnesota. In the Minnesota case, the traveler was in New York to attend Anime NYC 2021. Both people were vaccinated, experienced mild symptoms, and are on the mend.


The new testing requirements are in addition to extending the face covering mandate on all aircraft. As previously reported by Reuters, the current mandate will extend into a 13th consecutive month, through at least March 18, 2022. Those who refuse to wear a face covering onboard their flight could face fines of $500 for a first offense, up to $3,000 for continued refusal.


Increased Testing Part of Tiered Plan to Increase Global Availability

Although the testing requirements add a new layer of difficulty to entering the U.S., the Biden administration also wants to distribute more vaccines to further prevent the spread of the virus. The government plans on distributing 200 million more doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the nest 100 days, including 94 million to Africa.

jcmalcolm December 17, 2021

Nobody asks when you return to the USA, only when check-in by the airlines.
With all the different airlines and confusion caused by the current administration, anything can happen.
Returned from Vienna two weeks ago.  An antigen test was acceptable to Austrian Airlines for boarding (along with my GreenP - can't spell this out as it apparently is an 'unapproved word.'  !! Did Facebook buy this site??).
PCR tests are much faster in Europe, so gate agents may now start to expect them for US flights.

FiveMileFinal December 6, 2021

Because if you've been affected by Omicron, a test 1 day before departure is going to be better than a test 3 days before departure, right?

But if you test positive 1 day before departure, it's a lot more expensive to get a place to isolate and ride out the infection, because of the short notice...

Can't believe people don't see this obvious racket for what it is...

Starman December 5, 2021

The antigen test is perfectly acceptable for reentry to the US. This requires about 10 minutes to get results.

KimchiExpress December 3, 2021

What a joke. Omicron is here and spreading fast. We just do not know it as we do not bother with much sequencing. 

One school near us went from 1% of kids getting infected each week to 7% per week. And they are wearing masks. Yes, that is more than 1% per day (five day week). 

Observations by doctors in South Africa show that Omicron is so contagious masks may not help much. Time will give us a clearer picture. 

It took just three or four weeks to reach 74% of all infections in South Africa. South Africa does a great job on sequencing and are on the ball.

I am sure by January 1, omicron will be the dominant variant in the USA.

And the idea that people coming from countries with super low infection rates need to be testing coming into a country with one of the highest rates in the world is just plain old stupid. 

John Anderson L. December 2, 2021

What kind of test?? Will an Antigen be accepted??? The PCR takes too long to get results back