EU Tightens Entry Requirements for US
The number of American travelers in Europe has diminished anew as countries began adopting new measures to keep the virus outbreak at bay.
Earlier this week, the 27-member European Union announced that it was dropping the United States from its list of safe countries, and advised to reconsider allowing the entry of nonessential travelers from the US, according to a report by CNN.
Italy, the Netherlands, and Sweden have become the first countries to impose the EU rule, despite their tourism industry being heavily reliant on the US market.
On September 4, the Netherlands said that the US will be tagged anew as a “high-risk area,” joining Israel, Kosovo, Lebanon, Montenegro, and North Macedonia in the list.
While travelers from said countries are able to enter, they will have to show proof of full vaccination, a negative COVID-19 test, and undergo a mandatory 10-day quarantine.
Meanwhile, Sweden has removed the US from its approved list alongside the five other countries tagged as high risk by the Netherlands. Swedish residents will be exempted from the rule, but they would still need to produce a negative swab result.
It added that Swedish authorities were considering allowing fully-vaccinated arrivals from certain counties and would “return to this issue at a later date.”
Lastly, Italy introduced new measures on international arrivals to combat COVID-19, including those arriving from the US.
Last month, Italy required all visitors to show proof of a PCR or antigen COVID-19 test taken 72 hours before the scheduled travel, regardless of whether they are vaccinated.
According to Italy’s Ministry of Health, travelers who have not been vaccinated or have no proof of recovering from COVID-19 must quarantine for five days upon arrival and take a swab test.
It is unclear yet how the other member countries, many of whom have also been heavily reliant on the influx of US visitors to help revive their pandemic-battered tourist economies, will tweak the rules.
Despite the beefed-up vaccination efforts, COVID-19 cases have been rising sharply in the US between July and September, with the disease’s Delta variant blamed for the jump.