Categories: Staff Adventures

What you should know about international travel in the era of Covid-19

The world is reopening! It’s so exciting to be able to fly again, explore new places, even get a stamp on the passport! Here are some useful things to keep in mind when considering international travel.

According to the U.S. Department of State, it is now safe for U.S. Citizens and permanent residents to travel internationally – although it isn’t recommended for those who still haven’t been fully vaccinated. On top of the usual concern of travelers getting and maybe spreading Covid-19, there’s now an added challenge: Covid-19 variants. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t travel, but it is important to follow the destination specific guidelines, keeping you and those around you safe. You can find the guidelines per destination here.

A smart thing to do, for added peace of mind, is enrolling in the U.S. Dept of State’s STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, so you can be located in an emergency abroad. By signing up, the traveler will receive important information on the destination country and help the U.S. Embassy, family and friends locate them should an emergency arise.
A good tip is to keep the contact details for the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate – they’re available for emergencies 24/7, overseas and in Washington D.C.

Do you have a passport? There’s been a surge in passport applications, with some taking up to 12 weeks to be fully processed. If you’re planning on traveling abroad and don’t have a passport yet, make that your priority; besides that, some countries require that passports be valid for 6 months after the departure day from the destination and may require entry visas, which could delay having your necessary travel documents even more.

According to the official government websites, there are a few main things to watch out for when travelling internationally. Before and during your trip, it’s important to follow all requirements from the airlines and destination, such as wearing masks, taking tests, etc. More so, It has never been more important to purchase travel insurance; with guidelines constantly being updated, one must prepare for the event of a trip being cancelled last minute.

Upon return to the U.S., one must first have a negative Covid test result no more than 3 days before travel OR documentation of recovery from Covid in the past 3 months – you will not be allowed to board the plane back to the U.S. if these steps haven’t been followed.

Although not encouraged, those traveling unvaccinated have specific guidelines to follow. Before traveling, in addition to the recommendations for fully vaccinated people, one must also get tested for Covid-19 1-3 days before the trip. During the trip, wearing masks and avoiding crowds – especially staying 6ft away from those not traveling with you – is very important, as is disinfecting your hands as often as possible.

When arriving back home, not only the usual guidelines for vaccinated people should be followed, but on top of that one must self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel (14 days if you’re going to be around people with increased risks of illness).

So, where can you go? You’ll find a list with a sample of countries that are open to American tourists below. If your chosen destination isn’t listed, contact us or reach out on social media and we will answer your country-specific questions, plus we will help you get there!

Some main countries that are open for U.S. travelers include (these are current as of 5/27, for the latest information, visit our Covid-19 Resources page):

ANGUILLA

Must present a negative Covid-19 test taken 3-5 days before travel, along with paying a fee and completing an application through a government portal. Beginning July 1st, those who can show proof of vaccination taken at least 3 weeks before entering Anguilla can bypass the application and fees.

BAHAMAS

Travelers going to the Bahamas must fill out a Travel Health visa application and have a negative Covid-19 test no more than 5 days before arrival. Health insurance is mandatory for the entire stay and the cost of it is part of the Travel Health Visa fees. Those staying for longer than 5 days need to take a rapid antigen test on day 5.

COSTA RICA

Covid-19 tests are no longer required to enter the country. However, travelers must show proof of medical insurance and fill out health pass forms. The government also reserves the right to send travelers back to their home country sooner than planned.

CROATIA

In order to enter Croatia, travelers must show proof of either a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 48h before arriving, or provide proof of vaccination, or prove that you have recovered from Covid-19 within the past 11 to 180 days. Finally, one must show proof of accommodation already paid for.

EGYPT

Americans entering Egypt must provide physical proof of a negative Covid-19 test taken up to 96 hours upon arrival.

GREECE

In order to enter Greece, one must show negative Covid-19 test results taken no longer than 72 hours before arrival. Also valid is showing proof of vaccination, as long as the second shot was taken at least 2 weeks before the trip.

IRELAND

Although officials in Ireland are against nonessential travel, if one must visit, they have to show proof of a negative Covid-19 no more than 72h from arrival. Entering without a test could result in fines and even jail time. On top of that, travelers must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

ITALY

As with most other countries in this list, Italy requires proof of a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 72 hours upon arrival, along with completing a self-declaration form. Visitors must also isolate for 10 days before testing negative on a new test.

JAMAICA

Besides the negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 72h before arrival, travelers also need to complete a travel authorization to enter, no more than 7 days upon arrival.

KENYA

Kenyan airports have health screenings in the airports and the guidelines are to present a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 96h of arriving. As long as the traveler is not showing symptoms (like a fever or cough), they should be able to enjoy Kenya.

MEXICO

No Covid-19 tests are required to enter Mexico. There is, however, a health screening one must go through upon arrival.

NAMIBIA

Travelers must provide a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 7 days prior to arrival and there are further health screenings at the airports.

SOUTH AFRICA

Travelers must provide a negative Covid-19 test taken no more that 72h before travel; if that guideline isn’t followed, tourists will have to quarantine and pay for it out of their own pocket.

TANZANIA

Negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 3 days prior to arrival, along with going through health screenings at the airport.

THAILAND

Regardless of vaccination status, all tourists must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival, on top of providing a negative Covid-19 test taken no more than 72h before departing; there’ll also be further health screenings taking place once travelers arrive.

Even with so many guidelines, the sense of freedom that comes with knowing you can travel internationally again after a year of pandemic is priceless. We are excited to send our clients on adventures again! Contact us and start planning your next trip.

Stay tuned, next week we will be talking about domestic travel and all it’s guidelines! Are you traveling anywhere on Memorial Day? If so, we would love to hear from you!

willamettetravel

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