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U.S. to Require Covid Vaccinations for Arriving International Travelers

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The U.S. will also start putting into place additional testing requirements.

Posted: Sep 20, 2021 9:35 AM
Updated: Sep 20, 2021 9:36 AM

NBC NEWS - WASHINGTON — The Biden administration will require all international travelers coming into the U.S. to be fully vaccinated against Covid as part of a new international air travel system.

Starting in early November, foreign nationals flying into the U.S. will be required to be fully vaccinated and must show proof of vaccination prior to boarding a U.S.-bound flight, said White House Covid coordinator Jeffrey Zients.

The U.S. will also start putting into place additional testing requirements, Zients said. Foreign nationals will have to be tested three days prior to departure to the U.S. and show proof of a negative test, and unvaccinated Americans will have to test within one day of departure and be required to test again after their arrival.

While there is no vaccination requirement for domestic air travel, Zients said nothing is off the table.

"We clearly have a track record that shows we're pulling available levers to acquire vaccinations and we're not taking any measures off the table on specific authorities used for implementation," Zients said.

Zients didn't detail what vaccines will qualify and what would constitute as fully vaccinated and said the CDC would provide further details. The new policy applies only to air travel and not land border crossings.

Along with the vaccination and testing requirement, the U.S. will also put in place an enhanced contact tracing system for international travel.

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