White House drops ban on foreign travelers entering US, allowing entry for fully COVID-19 vaccinated

President Joe Biden’s administration announced Monday that the government will allow fully-vaccinated foreign visitors to enter the United States.

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The move will not go into effect immediately. The restrictions will be lifted in November, White House COVID-19 response coordinator Jeff Zients said.

“Beginning in early November, foreign nationals flying to the United States will be required to be fully vaccinated ... and they must show proof of vaccination prior to boarding a U.S.-bound airplane,” Zients said, according to CNN.

He explained the month-and-a-half delay in implementation will allow agencies and airlines “time to prepare.”

There will also be a COVID-19 test requirement within three days of departure, with proof of negative test results. Enhanced contact tracing and masking are also required. There will not be a required quarantine period, USA Today reported.

Not only will the change in policy help repair the relationships between the Biden White House and European officials, but it will also allow visitors with family members in the U.S. to be able to see each other in person for the first time in more than a year, CNN reported.

The ban started with China and then expanded to the U.K, Ireland, Brazil and India among the countries whose citizens cannot travel to the U.S. for nonessential trips, USA Today reported.

The travel industry has also been asking the federal government to lift some bans on international tourism.

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