The White House on Monday said that President Biden will allow vaccinated Europeans to enter the US in early November — ending a nearly two-year travel ban.
The policy will allow vaccinated travelers to enter the US from the 26-country Schengen Zone and from other countries that were early COVID-19 hotspots, including Brazil, China, Iran, Ireland, South Africa and the UK.
The ban on European travelers has been a particular point of diplomatic contention because Europe has seen infection rates fall far below those in the US. And most European countries recently reopened to US visitors.
“We have developed a new international air travel system that both enhances the safety of Americans here at home and enhances the safety of international air travel,” said White House coronavirus coordinator Jeff Zients.
“Most importantly, foreign nationals flying to the U.S. will be required to be fully vaccinated.”
The decision comes after the European Union last month took the US off its “safe list” of countries — resulting in a tightening of restrictions on Americans.