More destinations are requiring a full Covid-19 vaccination to travel restriction-free. Simply leaving home with a negative test result is no longer an acceptable substitute. Here are the latest Covid-19 vaccine mandates for travel.
Canada is one of the destinations that most Americans expected to reopen first due to its proximity and similarities to the United States. Instead, the northern neighbor didn’t lift its travel restrictions for non-essential travel until August 2021.
Americans can fly or drive to Canada once again if they’re fully vaccinated. Canadian and international travelers must also be fully vaccinated for intra-Canada commercial travel by air or the VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer trains.
In late August, the European Union recommended vaccines for visitors, but each member nation has to set its entry requirements.
Some European countries have only allowed fully vaccinated visitors to enter quarantine-free, and Iceland is an excellent example. The nation currently requires incoming guests to be fully vaccinated and have a negative pre-arrival test.
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Other EU nations that require full vaccination include:
Other EU members that may permit non-vaccinated travelers have strict entry requirements. Entry is possible with a negative pre-arrival test, but an add-on quarantine may also be enforced.
The United Kingdom also has strict entry requirements for the partial and unvaccinated. These two groups must self-quarantine for ten days.
Sweden and Norway currently ban most non-essential travel from the United States even if you’re properly vaccinated.
The Caribbean islands can also have stricter entry protocols to protect their relatively limited healthcare systems.
Several islands with the strictest entry requirements include:
- Cayman Islands: Fully vaccinated visitors at least 12 years old can visit but must self-quarantine for seven days. Unvaccinated travelers must self-quarantine for 14 days.
- Turks and Caicos: Visitors at least 16 years old must be fully vaccinated. All visitors need a negative pre-arrival test result.
- St. Kitts and Nevis: Travelers must be fully vaccinated and stay at an approved resort. Children under age 18 can be exempt when traveling with fully vaccinated parents.
- Grenada: Visitors age 13 or older must be fully vaccinated and have a follow-up diagnostic test upon arrival.
- Anguilla: Visitors at least 18 can enter restriction-free when receiving their final dose at least three weeks before entry.
If you’re fully vaccinated but want to visit a destination with more hassle-free entry requirements, you might consider the Dominican Republic, Aruba or the Bahamas.
You can anticipate obtaining a negative pre-arrival test and having adequate Covid-19 health travel insurance. But there is less red tape to enter to enjoy a tropical getaway.
Some luxury hotels across the United States require age-eligible guests to be fully vaccinated even if the local government doesn’t have a similar policy. Three hotel brands to currently implement this requirement are:
- Equinox Hotels (New York City)
- Elite Island Resorts (Antigua, Barbados, St. Lucia, Grenadines and Panama)
- Highgate Hawaii (Waikiki)
Other independent hotels may also have similar requirements. Worldwide loyalty programs like World of Hyatt, Marriott Bonvoy or IHG do not require full vaccination yet.
Most ocean and river cruise lines require guests age 12 or up to be fully vaccinated to board. The travel providers are willing to reschedule bookings for families with children near their twelfth birthday to guarantee the child is fully vaccinated.
Adults who have a vaccine exemption might be able to board and stay in a cabin area set aside for unvaccinated guests. The current CDC cruise line guidelines recommend that cruise ships have at least 95% of the cruisers being fully vaccinated.
If a cruise ship doesn’t require vaccination, unvaccinated and partially vaccinated guests may not be able to participate in some on-land excursions. For example, the Bahamas and other Caribbean ports require eligible travelers to be fully vaccinated to leave the ship.
Employers from various industries require their employees to be fully vaccinated before embarking on business travel again. Airlines and other frontline transportation providers receive the most headlines as pilots, flight attendants and desk staff must be fully vaccinated. The Chase megabank also requires its employees to be fully vaccinated before going on their next business trip.
While not every business requires its employees to have full vaccination, the destination may require incoming travelers to be. The full vaccination entry requirements may also apply to essential reasons to waive a quarantine.
International Visitors To The United States
Starting November 8, 2021, foreigners entering the United States for non-essential travel must be fully vaccinated and have a negative pre-arrival test. Currently, United States residents must only have a negative re-entry test result to get back into the country.
United States Vaccine Mandates
Domestic travel remains a popular alternative to international travel as there are fewer restrictions and fewer chances of having to self-quarantine.
However, some cities across the United States can only be worth visiting if you’re vaccinated as a negative diagnostic test is no longer a substitute for attending indoor events and restaurants. Four prominent cities with vaccine requirements include:
- New York City
- New Orleans
- Los Angeles
- San Francisco
The mandate requires showing proof of vaccination for indoor activities like dining, museums, concerts and sports events.
Depending on the city, attendees may only need to show proof of one recent shot and can gain unimpeded entry as they are partially vaccinated.
Other cities and counties across the United States have mandates as well. For example, theme parks like Six Flags Magic Mountain and Universal Studios Hollywood must abide by the Los Angeles vaccine mandate for large outside gatherings.
Hawaii’s Maui County only permits vaccinated customers to enjoy indoor dining, bars and other “high-risk activities.” This policy is in addition to Hawaii’s statewide requirement of needing to be fully vaccinated or having a negative test result to waive the 10-day quarantine upon entry.
Age-eligible adults and teens are more likely to need a full vaccination to travel internationally. In most cases, domestic travel doesn’t require travelers to be fully vaccinated to board commercial transit or stay in a hotel. But the unvaccinated and partially vaccinated may be prohibited from certain activities like indoor dining, museums, shows or large outdoor events.