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International Travelers Return as U.S. Reopens Borders

After being closed for nearly two years, international travelers celebrated long-awaited reunions on U.S. soil.
Over 20 months ago, the United States closed borders to most inbound travelers in the hopes of containing the spread of COVID-19. With the development of vaccines and a larger population inoculated against the virus, the White House announced a plan to re-open borders to foreign visitors.


After a long wait, travelers from across North America and Europe celebrated travel and reunited with loved ones as the first flights arrived on U.S. soil. The Associated Press reports there was much to celebrate when the borders opened on Monday, November 8, 2021.

Britain Celebrates With Double Takeoff, While Travelers Everywhere Come Back

Although borders opened early in the morning, the biggest celebration may have come from the United Kingdom. In a coordinated effort, two Airbus A350 flights – one operated by British Airways and one by Virgin Atlantic – simultaneously left London Heathrow Airport (LHR) bound for John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York.




Even though Air Canada was previously operating international routes between their home country and the United States, land borders started seeing traffic as early as 2 a.m. Similar demand was seen at the southern border with Mexico.


With travel returning, flyers can look forward to more international travel options across multiple carriers. Data from Cirium shows international carriers are increasing flights between the U.S. and U.K. by over 20%, which could create a ripple effect across Europe and other nations.


But even with the renewed optimism for international travel, entry requirements continue to differ from country to country. For example: foreign travelers to the U.S. must be vaccinated with one of the shots approved for emergency use by the World Health Organization (WHO) and provide proof of inoculation before boarding an aircraft. Meanwhile, to travel to the U.K., vaccinated travelers must take a COVID-19 test and complete a passenger locator form prior to arrival.’


United States Remains on EU Recommended Travel Restriction List

While the U.S. is welcoming back international travelers, the European Union is still cautioning member states to reconsider allowing Americans to enter. The European Council put the U.S. back on the recommended travel restriction list in August 2021 and has not removed them since.

health1au November 14, 2021

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