Even though Europe loves a greenback, many countries are reverting the United States back to “red”. The political chess game caused by US travel bans on Europeans rolls on, and this time its the European Union making the moves.
On Monday, August 30th, the European Union is expected to remove the United States from its “safe list” for travel, meaning unvaccinated visitors will largely no longer be welcomed into the bloc. Some countries have already jumped the gun.
Americans Face Uncertainty Over Europe Trips
Over the summer, Europe opened to Americans on the basis that the USA would end its ban on European visitors, entering from the Schengen Area.
The presidential ban restrict entry to the USA for visitors coming from the European Union where vaccination rates are extremely high and covid-19 cases are low, yet does absolutely nothing to prevent tourist visitors entering from many areas of the world with alarmingly low vaccination levels and high rates of covid-19 transmission.
Fed up with lack of progress after talks with US leadership, including an oval office visit from German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, the European Union (EU) is widely expected to remove the USA from its “safe list” for travel.
The “safe list” allows not only vaccinated Americans, but unvaccinated people to visit, provided they bring a negative covid-19 test certificate. Further measures were put in place, in places like France, to demand regular testing of unvaccinated visitors, if they wished to enter cafes, bars or hotels.
If the US is indeed removed from the EU safe list, only fully vaccinated visitors from the USA would still be able to enter some countries.
Yes, for clarity, if you’re a fully vaccinated American, this should not change much, if anything at all. It just means countries will have an easier time barring unvaccinated US visitors from entry. The Czech Republic has already taken action on this, ahead of the official news.
Greece hasn’t yet gone that far, but has updated requirements so that unvaccinated visitors must take a rapid test every 48 hours to enter most attractions, restaurants and hotels. Similar setups exist in France and Italy.
EU Countries Can Opt Out
Many tourism driven nations opened to American visitors before the EU officially permitted entry, or added the United States to its safe list.
The EU removing the USA from the “safe list” doesn’t mean all countries have to follow recommendations – – and in fact — many won’t.
Unvaccinated Americans may face total bans or extra hurdles to visit Europe in the coming months, unless the White House takes action to welcome European visitors, but fully vaccinated travelers should still be able to enter Europe for tourism, business or leisure without hassle.