US travel ban to be lifted, allowing vaccinated South Africans entry from November
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White House Coronavirus response coordinator Jeff Zients said during a media briefing on Monday that non-citizens visiting the US will be required to show proof of vaccination and a negative Covid test taken within three days of departure.
Travellers will not be required to quarantine upon arrival.
Reuters reported that Zients said the details of the policy are still being decided and that the exact date in early November will be released.
“We will protect Americans here at home and enhance the safety of international travel,” he said.
According to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a person is considered fully vaccinated with any FDA-authorised vaccines or any of the vaccines the World Health organisation (WHO) has authorised.
The current restrictions have barred travellers from most of the world from entering the US.
The new rules will lift the bans on entry for foreigners who’ve been in certain regions, such as the UK and EU, within the previous two weeks.
Since the start of the pandemic, the US has recorded over 42 million infections and 677 000 Coronavirus-related deaths.
Over 55% of the country’s population has been fully vaccinated.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said during a press conference on Monday that the its CDC would be involved with contact tracing.
“The CDC is going to issue a contact tracing order that will require airlines to collect comprehensive contact information for every passenger coming to the United States and to provide that information promptly to the CDC, upon request, to follow up with travellers who have been exposed to Covid-19 variants or other pathogens. And these requirements will apply globally,” she said.