What the U.S. reopening means for your travel



Beginning in November, the U.S. will allow vaccinated travelers from 33 countries, including China, Brazil, South Africa, India and the 26 nations in Europe’s Schengen zone, in the country for leisure travel. They will need to present a negative COVID test taken within 72 hours of their departure to the U.S. They will need to have taken either one of the vaccines approved in the U.S. (Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech or Johnson & Johnson/Janssen) or another approved by the W.H.O. (Oxford/AstraZeneca, Covishield, Sinopharm or Sinovac).



What this means for American travelers is that there will soon be a lot more competition for space in domestic travel. Hotels and resorts that might have had good availability will suddenly be filling up. Given the timing, this means that if you do not yet have your travel for Thanksgiving and the festive season booked, you should contact your travel advisor right away and get your space reserved. Airline bookings from Europe to the U.S. have surged in the last week.


This also means that flight prices to Europe and these other countries could well start to go up as demand crests. It also means that space in these countries could start to open up. Like many Americans, travelers in other areas have been doing a lot of domestic travel (or travel within the European Union/Schengen zone for Europeans). With a new market opening up, there are more places to go. It also might mean some countries will ease up on restrictions at least for vaccinated Americans given that the U.S. will now let their citizens in.



For you, this might mean you can now find availability on a river cruise to check out those Christmas markets in Europe. Perhaps you can ski the Alps instead of the Rockies this winter. We don’t yet know when Americans might be able to travel to China without quarantine.



Another destination that could be opening up soon is Australia. The country wants to vaccinate at least 80% of its 25 millions citizens before allowing international leisure travel for vaccinated visitors. Australia is about halfway there, and tourism minister Dan Tehan said last week that “at this rate” the country would open “by Christmas at the latest.” The U.S. is expected to be on the list of countries whose citizens are welcome to visit Australia provided they are fully vaccinated and adhere to other protocols.


Slowly but surely, the world is reopening.

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