Travelers entering the United States will no longer have to present a negative COVID-19 test as of Sunday June 12, 2022.
First reported by CNN and confirmed by White House Assistant Press Secretary Kevin Munoz, the Biden Administration will no longer require travelers to provide a negative COVID-19 test as it continues relaxing previously implemented safety protocols. This would make it just about 1 1/2 years since it was implemented in January 2021. The CDC has since updated its protocols regarding dropping testing requirements for entry into the U.S.
Today, CDC is announcing that the Order requiring persons to show a negative COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States, will be rescinded, effective on June 12, 2022 at 12:01AM ET.
This means that starting at 12:01AM ET on June 12, 2022, air passengers will not need to get tested and show the COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 prior to boarding a flight to the U.S.
The COVID-19 pandemic has now shifted to a new phase, due to the widespread uptake of highly effective COVID-19 vaccines, the availability of effective therapeutics, and the accrual of high rates of vaccine- and infection-induced immunity at the population level in the United States. Each of these measures has contributed to lower risk of severe disease and death across the United States. As a result, this requirement which was needed at an earlier stage in the pandemic may be withdrawn. CDC continues to recommend that those travelers boarding a flight to the U.S. get tested for current infection with a viral test as close to the time of departure as possible (no more than 3 days) and not travel if they are sick.
CDC continues to evaluate the latest science and state of the pandemic and will reassess the need for a testing requirement if the situation changes. CDC will communicate any updates publicly if and/or when they change.
With little evidence suggesting that testing significantly reduces the spread of COVID-19 transmission, the U.S. government had decided in favor of dropping the requirement. With this coming into effect shortly, travel to the United States should be much less stressful as the travel mask mandate was struck down in a court of law in April. As excited as some travelers may be to hear this news, the change cannot go into effect immediately as the government as to work with all affected airlines to help them transition back to pre-testing days.
[Featured Photo: Ken Lund/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)]