EU Drops United States from “Safe Travel” List
The European Union voted on Monday to remove the United States from the EU’s safe travel list. That means that U.S. visitors and those from five other countries will likely face tighter restrictions such as COVID-19 tests and quarantines.
This was already rumored and based on reports from last week, a final decision was expected today. The EU Council voted to update the list of countries, special administrative regions and other entities and territorial authorities for which travel restrictions should be lifted. The United States, Israel, Kosovo, Lebanon, Montenegro, and the Republic of North Macedonia were removed from the list.
Non-essential travel to the EU from these countries or entities is now subject to temporary travel restriction. As stipulated in the Council recommendation, this list will continue to be reviewed regularly and, as the case may be, updated.
The guidance is non-binding for EU member states. That means that it remains up to each individual country in the European Union to decide whether to adopt the new policy for Americans. Countries can also choose to accept proof of vaccination to waive travel restrictions, so this change could possibly affect the unvaccinated only.
The European Union’s safe list includes countries where the number of Covid-19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants over the last 14 days must not be above the limit of 75. Citizens of “safe” countries can visit the European Union for non-essential travel. According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the US had 588 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last two weeks.
The list of “safe” countries now includes:
- Bosnia and Hercegovina
- Brunei Darussalam
- New Zealand
- Republic of Moldova
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
- China, subject to confirmation of reciprocity
You can see the press release here.