The Biden administration has renewed Trump-era Covid-19 travel bans on non-US visitors from Brazil and most of Europe, including the UK and Ireland.
The White House also imposted a new ban on South Africa over its virus variant.
Former President Donald Trump had ordered the bans to end on 26 January as one of his final acts in office. The new travel restrictions came as Minnesota recorded the first US case of the Brazil variant from a resident who had recently travelled to that country.
“This case marks the first documented instance of the Brazil P.1 variant in the United States,” said the Minnesota Department of Health on Monday.
‘ ‘The U.S. Department of State and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) remind all travelers that beginning tomorrow, January 26, all air passengers two years of age or older arriving to the United States must provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test or proof of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding.’’ Reads statement from Office of the Spokesperson
It adds: This order applies to both foreign nationals and U.S. citizens.
U.S. citizens have also been advised to reconsider non-essential travel abroad.
According to Office of the Spokesperson, Those that must travel abroad following the implementation of this order should carefully consider the following
You could have difficulty accessing a test. Testing availability and turnaround times vary widely around the world. Check the U.S. Embassy website for your planned destination(s) for information about testing options. What plan do you have to ensure you can get a test that meets the requirement in order to come home on time?
You could test positive and have to stay abroad. Many individuals infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 are asymptomatic and unaware they carry the virus. If you test positive, you will not be able to return home as planned. What plan do you have in case you cannot come home for several weeks? Where will you stay? How will you finance your stay?
You could have difficulty accessing or financing medical care. Travelers should be aware that the availability and quality of healthcare varies around the world, and that private health insurance may not cover expenses incurred abroad. Will your health insurance cover your hospitalization or other medical expenses abroad? Do you have travel insurance that covers medical evacuation to the United States, and does it include COVID-19 as a covered item?