The Biden administration partners with working groups from Canada, Mexico, the UK, and the EU to determine safe strategies in restarting international travel. A US official said that the US isn’t in a hurry to lift restrictions given the amount of time needed for the groups to come up with strategies. The official also said that the US informed airlines about the working groups.
The White House official said that “While we are not reopening travel today, we hope that these expert working groups will help our collective expertise to chart a path forward”. He added that the goal is to safely reopen international travel.
White House COVID Response Team and the National Security Council along with the Centers for Disease Control will be part of the working group.
On Tuesday, the CDC announced that it is easing travel recommendations to different countries including Japan, Canada, and South Africa to name a few. However, COVID19 restrictions are still in place. The agency still wants travelers from the US to get vaccinated in case they have to travel to any of the countries on their list.
According to CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, the travel restrictions will depend on “an interagency conversation, and we are looking at the data in real time as to how we should move forward with that”.
Opening the Border
The Biden administration has been pressured by different businesses and even lawmakers to change the current US border restrictions. US and UK aviation industry has called out President Biden and UK Prime Minister Johnson to resume US-UK travel. On the other hand, lawmakers urged President Biden to allow Canadian travelers to cross the US-Canada land border. Communities along the Canadian border suffered economically since the border restrictions were in effect.
Airlines for America, a group that represents US airlines, believes that “these working groups should act quickly to endorse a policy backed by science that will allow travelers who are fully vaccinated to travel to the US”.