The United States is now advising against travel to destinations including Greece, Ireland, Iran and Malta.
These destinations can now be found on the State Department and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Level 4 lists, prompted by increasing case numbers of Covid-19.
The CDC’s advice in relation to destinations on this now 70-strong list states: “Avoid travel to these destinations. If you must travel to these destinations, make sure you are fully vaccinated before travel.”
A ban on travel from the UK to the US was first introduced on 16 March last year. The UK has been at level 4 since 19 July, when it was moved up from level 3.
While level 4 carries a “do not travel warning”, level three’s advisory is for US travellers to “reconsider travel”. This is guidance, rather than a legal requirement.
On 26 July, the Biden administration announced it would maintain restrictions on a range of countries and territories, including the EU and China, for the foreseeable future.
Both the US and the UK have a high number of Covid-positive cases caused by the Delta variant, although new infections in the UK appear to be decreasing.
“Given where we are today … with the Delta variant, we will maintain existing travel restrictions at this point,” White House spokesperson Jen Psaki told a press conference.
“Driven by the Delta variant, cases are rising here at home, particularly among those who are unvaccinated and appear likely continue to increase in the weeks ahead.”
Since 2 August, when the UK’s rules around travel from the US changed, fully vaccinated travellers from the US have been able to avoid quarantine in the UK, in line with arrivals from other amber list countries.
Double-vaccinated inbound US travellers now follow “green list” rules, needing to present a negative Covid test before departure and a negative PCR test within two days of arrival.
Unvaccinated US travellers still need to self-isolate for 10 days and take two PCR tests on days two and eight.
Visitors from the States are crucial to the UK’s tourism market, accounting for 4.5 million visits to the UK in 2019, according to data from Visit Britain – nearly 10 per cent of the global total.