EU set to offer travel restrictions for U.S. visitors

BRUSSELS – The European Union is set to inform member states that they should reintroduce travel restrictions for visitors from the Unit...

BRUSSELS – The European Union is set to inform member states that they should reintroduce travel restrictions for visitors from the United States, three EU officials said on Sunday, as infections with coronavirus and hospitalizations have increased in the United States in recent weeks.

As of Monday, officials said, the United States will be removed from a “safe list” of countries whose residents can travel within the 27-country bloc without additional restrictions, such as quarantine and testing requirements. The suggested restrictions, made by the European Council, will not be binding on member countries, and it will be up to those countries to decide whether to impose them or not.

Most European countries have reopened their borders to Americans in June, more than a year after imposing a travel ban, hoping Americans would visit this summer and help a struggling tourism industry rebound.

In essence, the European Union gave the United States a summer pass to encourage tourism, despite relatively high infection rates in parts of the country.

The threshold for being on the EU’s ‘safe travel’ list is to have less than 75 new cases of Covid-19 per day per 100,000 people in the previous 14 days. The United States has an infection rate well above that threshold, and Covid hospitalizations in the country topped 100,000 last week for the first time since January.

Yet while American tourists were able to make it to Europe this summer, the United States has remained closed to Europeans, arousing the anger of Europeans and their leaders, who expressed their frustration at the lack of reciprocity.

Travelers from countries on the safe list can usually visit EU countries without quarantine by showing proof of vaccination or a negative test, while those from countries not on this list are prohibited from traveling. visit for non-essential reasons and may be subject to additional testing and quarantine requirements. .

Most European countries reopened their economies this summer after vaccination campaigns picked up speed in recent months. Countries like France and Italy, among others, have required proof of vaccination or a negative coronavirus test result so people can dine in restaurants, visit museums or attend concerts, making Covid a element of everyday life.

The decision to require the reimposition of travel restrictions on U.S. travelers was first reported by Reuters. EU officials who presented the plan did so on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly before an announcement scheduled for Monday.

Other countries that should be removed from the “safe list” include Israel, Kosovo, Lebanon, Montenegro and North Macedonia.

The European Union overtook the US in vaccinations last month, with 64% of residents in the block having received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, compared to 60% in the United States, according to Our World in Data.

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Newsrust - US Top News: EU set to offer travel restrictions for U.S. visitors
EU set to offer travel restrictions for U.S. visitors
Newsrust - US Top News
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