- 10 Jun 22
The change, introduced by the Biden administration, takes effect at 12:01 a.m. this coming Sunday.
The Biden administration is set to drop Covid-19 testing requirements for inbound air travellers from abroad on Sunday, ending one of the longest-running travel restrictions of the pandemic.
The rules were initially put in place by the Trump administration in early 2021 and later tightened by the Biden administration. Most recently, inbound travellers (including U.S. citizens) were required to show proof of a negative Covid test a day before boarding U.S.-bound flights.
The rule applied to everyone, regardless of vaccination status or citizenship, but grants exemptions to travellers 2 and older who had recently recovered from the virus.
Requirements for travellers entering the U.S. by land or ferry remain unchanged: non-U.S. citizens, nationals and permanent residents can only enter if they are fully vaccinated. There is no testing requirement for land ports or ferry terminals.
Airlines and other travel industry members had consistently lobbied against the requirement, arguing it was hurting international travel demand. The travel industry has been one of the hardest hit by the pandemic, with Ireland on the list of countries banned from flying to the US last year.
“The Biden administration is to be commended for this action, which will welcome back visitors from around the world and accelerate the recovery of the U.S. travel industry,” Roger Dow, president of the U.S. Travel Association said in a statement.
“International inbound travel is vitally important to businesses and workers across the country who have struggled to regain losses from this valuable sector.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will reportedly reassess the decision in 90 days.
In April, a Trump-appointed federal judge ended contentious rule that aimed to curb the spread of Covid-19: the Biden administration’s federal mandate that travellers wear masks on planes and other forms of public transportation.
Masks have been shown to dramatically decrease the spread of Covid.
All Covid-19 restrictions are removed for travelling to Ireland. You no longer need to complete a passenger locator form nor do you need proof of vaccination or recovery, or a Covid-19 test.
The Government continues to issue guidance to help prevent the spread of Covid-19, however the laws that were used during the pandemic are no longer in place.