The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced on Monday that it had lifted the ‘Do Not Travel’ advice for several European Union/European Economic Area countries and other destinations.
All EU/EEA countries have had the ‘Level Four: Do Not Travel’ advice for over a year now. However, after being concluded that the COVID-19 no longer causes serious health implications, CDC said that the Level Four travel health advisories would now apply only for special circumstances, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
The list of countries that have been dropped from Level Four to Level Three now includes France, Greece, Spain, Austria, Belgium, Portugal, Italy, and Switzerland, among others.
Travel to these and some other countries is no longer as highly discouraged as before. However, the authorities have advised that all US citizens follow the vaccination recommendations when reaching another country in order to avoid additional restrictions.
The EU countries that have not lifted their entry restrictions yet continue to require travellers to present a valid vaccination certificate. This means that travellers from the US should still make sure to meet the travel rules when reaching EU countries.
All EU countries currently have the same validity period on vaccination and recovery certificates. A vaccination certificate is considered valid in the EU only if the document proves that the holder has completed primary vaccination in the last nine months or it has received an additional vaccine dose.
Recovery passes are also accepted for entry into the EU. A recovery pass is considered valid in the EU if it proves that the holder recovered from the virus in the last six months.
Apart from removing EU countries from the Level Four, the CDC has revealed that several other destinations, such as the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Turkey, among others, will also now be part of the Level Three list.
The World Health Organization (WHO) shows that the US reported 214,867 new COVID-19 infection cases in the last seven days. On the other hand, the same shows that the European continent has reported slightly increased figures during the same period.
Nonetheless, the vaccination rates remain high in Europe. The data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) revealed that a total of 890,580,539 COVID-19 vaccines doses had been administered in EU/EEA countries until now. It further shows that a total of 72.5 per cent of the population has completed primary vaccination, and another 52.9 per cent has received an additional vaccine dose.
While the US authorities no longer discourage travel outside the country, they are yet to reveal whether they will follow the example of some EU countries and drop their entry rules for incoming travellers.