US Drops Covid Testing Requirement for International Travelers

International travelers entering the US will no longer be required to present proof of a negative COVID test before arriving in the country. The testing mandate for international travelers was first put in place in the US in January 2021.

Since April, travelers on airplanes, buses, and public transportation in the US have not been required to wear masks.

Once the requirement is lifted, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will examine the data regarding travel and COVID-19 and reinstate the requirement if needed in ninety days.

Negative COVID test no longer required for international travelers to US

Many other countries, including the UK and Greece, have dropped testing requirements for international travelers entering the country.

The travel industry, which has been one of the hardest-hit industries in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, has been urging the US to drop the testing requirement in recent months.

“Given the slow economic recovery of the business and international travel sectors, and in light of medical advancements and the improved public health metrics in the U.S., we encourage you to immediately remove the inbound testing requirement for vaccinated air travelers,” travel industry heads wrote in a recent letter to Ashish Jha, the Coronavirus Response Coordinator for the White House.

Industry heads claim that the testing requirement has hurt sales for international trips, and many praised the decision to drop the measure.

“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…International inbound travel is vitally important to businesses and workers across the country who have struggled to regain losses from this valuable sector,” said Roger Dow, president of the U.S. Travel Association, in a recent statement.

Masks no longer required in many places in Greece

As of June 1st, the use of masks is no longer required in much of Greece, but there are still some places where people must wear a face covering in the country.

For example, masks are required both for taxi drivers and their passengers but are not required for those traveling in airplanes.

Employees and customers in pharmacies also must wear masks, but employees and customers in retail stores, supermarkets, banks, and other businesses are not required to.

Travelers in ferries are required to wear masks in enclosed spaces on the boat but do not have to wear them in outdoor areas. All those traveling on Greek KTEL buses and trains, which have numbered seats, do not have to wear protective face coverings either.

However, those using public transportation such as buses, trolleys, the metro, or tram must wear a mask.

Office workers are not required to wear protective face coverings at work anymore and neither are customers and employees at restaurants and bars.

The use of masks is still required at all private and public hospitals, clinics, diagnostic centers, and doctors’ offices, as well as in all elder care facilities.

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