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Foreign Office urges ‘wait and see’ approach to US travel return

Britons planning to travel to the US when restrictions are lifted from next month “may wish to wait” for further details on how vaccine checks will be introduced on arrival.

The message came in latest Foreign Office travel advice issued on Friday night.

The FCDO announcement came after the US confirmed that its border will be reopened to fully vaccinated travellers from the UK from November 8.

The updated FCDO advice said: “The US government announced on 15 October that it would lift travel restrictions starting from 8 November for foreign citizens who are fully vaccinated with any Covid-19 vaccine approved for emergency use by the World Health Organisation or approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).


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“We are waiting for further details on how this will be implemented at US borders.

“British nationals planning to travel to the US from 8 November 2021 onwards may wish to wait for further information to be released by the US government. We will update travel advice concerning entry to USA accordingly.

“The USA has not yet confirmed that it will accept the UK’s proof of Covid-19 recovery and vaccination record.”

The relaxation of strict transatlantic travel restrictions, imposed with the outbreak of the Covid-19 crisis in March 2020, was widely welcomed by airlines and the UK travel trade earlier on Friday.

London Heathrow to New York JFK is the world’s most important route for business travel.

Which? Travel editor Rory Boland said the planning lifting of restrictions would provide “much-needed clarity” for those looking to travel to the US.

“However, it may be worth waiting a week or two to book your flights as prices tend to be highest immediately after countries open for tourism and then drop once the airlines have increased capacity on that travel route,” added.

“It’s also important to remember that while the pandemic is ongoing, no travel is risk free and restrictions are liable to change, sometimes at short notice, potentially putting your money at risk.

“Anyone looking to travel to the US should still book with a provider that has a reliable flexible booking policy, or if appropriate, a package holiday as these come with stronger financial protections.

“A good travel insurance policy will continue to be essential, and it’s also advisable to book with a credit card to give yourself further protection.”

Delta Air Lines chef executive Ed Bastian said: “I applaud the [US] administration’s decision to welcome foreign nationals back to the United States beginning November 8.

“Thanks to the remarkable scientific efforts undertaken by the administration to protect public health through world-leading vaccination programs and health safety protocols, US borders can safely be reopened.

“International air travel is essential to global economic recovery and the United States’ tourism industry. Delta people are excited to play our part in reuniting families for the holidays and reconnecting the world after more than 19 months apart.”

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