England Scraps Quarantine Requirement for Vaccinated Americans
England will soon allow fully vaccinated visitors from the United States to arrive without quarantine, the transport minister said on Wednesday. This is good news for those planning to travel to England and even more so for airlines and travel companies. Quarantine requirements will also be lifted for visitors coming from European Union countries, except for France. Tougher rules will continue to be in place for France, with quarantine required even if travelers are fully vaccinated.
“We’re helping reunite people living in the US and European countries with their family and friends in the UK,” Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said on Twitter. The new rules will kick in on Monday, August 2nd.
Changes only apply to fully vaccinated people with a U.S. or European approved shot. Those travelling would still need to do the usual pre-departure test before arrival and take a PCR test on day two of arriving in England. It is not yet known whether other UK nations will adopt the same changes. For now, vaccinated Americans and Europeans can only avoid quarantine when arriving to England.
U.S. citizens have been allowed to travel to the U.K. during the pandemic but faced travel restrictions, including testing requirements and quarantine. Travelers returning from England to the United States must also still show a negative coronavirus test or recent recovery from COVID-19 to board U.S.-bound international flights under a CDC requirement in place since January. This requirement applies to all international flights to the U.S., even for those who are fully vaccinated.
The U.S. has no plans to reciprocate the easing of travel restrictions for now. The Biden administration this week said it would maintain travel restrictions, including a ban on most non-U.S. citizens from entering the U.S. from Britain, due to the rapid spread of the delta variant. Last week, the CDC and State Department also raised the warnings on U.K. travel to the highest level. That means that Americans should avoid traveling there.
At the same time, the CDC also reversed course domestically. It now says that fully vaccinated people should wear masks indoors again in places with high Covid transmission rates.