Travel Tips Blog: Planning Your Next Vacation? Here’s How to Navigate COVID-19 Travel Guidelines.

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Destinations across the globe have safely reopened their doors to travelers, but there are still important guidelines to keep in mind when planning your next vacation. In order for your next trip to be as stress-free as possible, it is important to be aware of local COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions before you go. This way, you can spend more time relaxing - and less time worrying.

DOMESTIC

Nearly all U.S. states have lifted COVID-19 travel restrictions, making domestic travel a fantastic option for your next getaway. Popular destinations like California, Florida, and New York have opened up their gates and ended travel restrictions altogether. It’s still best practice to check any local ordinances for the state(s) you are visiting.

The islands of Hawaii, known for implementing some of the strictest COVID-19 guidelines in the U.S., have begun to ease travel restrictions. Visitors to Hawaii from within the U.S. no longer need to take a pre-travel COVID-19 test if they are fully vaccinated. Travelers who are not vaccinated will still need to provide a negative COVID-19 test result upon arrival, but the state plans to lift this requirement when the islands reach a 70% vaccination rate.

Resorts and hotels have opened back up across the country, offering accommodations to visitors and complying with local guidelines.

CARIBBEAN

The Caribbean remains an attractive destination for travelers looking for a tropical getaway. Most islands in the Caribbean have reopened to international tourism and are welcoming travelers who meet a few key criteria. Each island in the Caribbean has its own set of guidelines designed to keep travelers safe, so be sure to check local guidelines before planning your trip.

U.S. visitors to the Bahamas are required to provide a negative PCR test result within five days of arriving on the island, but travelers who are fully vaccinated are exempt. Travelers to Jamaica, on the other hand, must provide a negative test taken within three days of travel - as well as complete an online Travel Authorization Questionnaire and stay at an approved COVID-19 compliant accommodation. U.S. visitors to Puerto Rico will need to provide a negative test result before arriving on the island, unless they are fully vaccinated.

While guidelines vary across the Caribbean, the majority of islands are open to visitors and resort destinations are making accommodations for guests. Visitors returning to the U.S. from the Caribbean will need to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test, taken no more than 72 hours before boarding their flight. Luckily, hotels and resorts throughout the Caribbean are offering pre-travel testing to travelers - as well as low-cost services for guests who might need to quarantine.

MEXICO

Mexico has always been a popular destination for travelers seeking exceptional food and glistening beaches. The country is currently open to travelers, and does not require visitors to quarantine or provide a COVID-19 test upon arrival. While it is not a requirement, the CDC currently advises travelers to be fully vaccinated before traveling to Mexico. The land border between the United States and Mexico is currently closed for nonessential travel, but visitors are free to arrive by air.

Visitors will be asked to fill out a health declaration form and scan an associated QR code upon arrival at the airport. Most resorts and hotels, such as those in Cancun, will also require visitors to fill out a brief health questionnaire before their stay. Travelers from the U.S. should note that they will be required to provide negative COVID-19 test results taken 72 hours or less prior to travel back to the United States.

CANADA

Canada has announced that it will reopen its borders to fully vaccinated visitors from the U.S. on August 9th, 2021. Non-vaccinated travelers and those residing outside of the U.S. are not yet permitted to enter the country. U.S. residents traveling to Canada must complete their COVID-19 vaccination at least 14 days prior to entry.

Canada has also announced that it intends to allow fully vaccinated travelers from any country beginning on August 7th, “provided that Canada’s COVID-19 epidemiology remains favourable.” Travelers to Canada will still need to meet pre-entry testing requirements, submit a quarantine plan, and be asymptomatic upon arrival.

EUROPE

Travel to European destinations is also surging as European countries reopen their doors to American visitors. Fully vaccinated travelers from the U.S. are now welcome in France, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Luxembourg and Ireland without the need to provide a COVID-19 test. American travelers are also welcome in a number of other countries, including Belgium, Italy, the Czech Republic, and Portugal - provided that they comply with testing requirements.

Travelers should be aware that guidelines vary across Europe. In some countries, like Iceland, visitors from the U.S. must be fully vaccinated in addition to complying with testing requirements. Americans visiting Spain will need to fill out a health questionnaire and generate a unique QR code in order to enter. The Netherlands, on the other hand, deems the United States a safe country and allows travelers from the U.S. to enter without a testing or quarantine requirement.

Regardless of where you are booking your next vacation, it is important to keep an eye on local guidelines and stay informed of any restrictions. Navigating travel restrictions and local guidelines when planning a vacation doesn’t have to be complicated. Put your mind at ease by reading up on your destination’s unique requirements, and by planning ahead.

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