The White House made the announcement on Monday. The restrictions were in effect since March 2020. Here are the new access formalities for French tourists.
After the British government, which announced on Friday September 17 an easing of entry conditions to England for vaccinated travelers, the United States will in turn allow entry into their territory to travelers vaccinated against Covid-19, announced this Monday the White House. From November 1, travelers will therefore be able to travel to the United States but will, in addition to presenting proof of vaccination against Covid, be tested in the three days preceding their trip and wear a mask.
A contact tracing system will be put in place, White House pandemic coordinator Jeff Zients also said. According to him, the United States has taken the time to put in place a comprehensive system based on “the individuals” and not on differences in treatment depending on the country of origin. The White House did not immediately specify which vaccines would allow entry on American soil.
“Good news for businesses”
According to European Commissioner Thierry Breton, responsible for coordinating the supply of the European Union with anti-Covid vaccines, “This concerns all people vaccinated with vaccines that are recognized by the FDA”, the American drug agency, namely those of Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (Janssen). The serum of the Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical group AstraZeneca and the Russian and Chinese vaccines would thus be excluded. Thierry Breton however indicated that the American authorities would examine the possibility of lifting the restrictions for Europeans vaccinated with AstraZeneca. Jeff Zients “Told me that for the other vaccines, for AstraZeneca in particular, it was their health agency that would decide but he seemed to be positive and optimistic”, he told AFP.
Washington is therefore lifting restrictions that since March 2020 concerned travelers from the European Union, the United Kingdom, or China, and then applying later to India or Brazil. The European Commission welcomed this announcement stressing that it was a decision “long awaited“.
“We welcome the announcement by the United States that fully vaccinated European travelers will soon be able to travel to the United States again. This is a long overdue measure for separated friends and families, and good news for businesses.“, The Commission said on Twitter. The Franco-Dutch group Air France-KLM judged this news “Formidable” while transatlantic flights represent a substantial part of its income. The federations of the sector Airlines for Europe and Airlines for America have also “Applauded” the announcement. For the American Chamber of Commerce, this measure “Will help foster a robust and sustainable recovery in the US economy.”
What are the formalities for French tourists?
Anyone wishing to fly to the United States will need to prove that they have been fully vaccinated. French people aged 2 or over traveling to the United States must present the result of a negative screening test for Covid-19 made in three calendar days before the flight. These measures apply even in the event of simple transit through American territory.
In addition, a certificate is to be completed and presented upon boarding: Passenger Disclosure and Attestation to the United States of America
Passengers who have already tested positive for Covid-19 and able to present a positive test result accompanied by a letter drawn up by a health professional attesting to their ability to travel may be exempted from this obligation to test.
The White House has not yet specified which vaccines would allow entry on American soil. It is far from being a detail, many British and Europeans have received the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is not recognized in the United States where only those of Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (Janssen ).
Finally, travelers will need to provide their phone number and email address to ensure a safe contact follow-up.
Optimistic tour operators
American borders have been closed to millions of international travelers, whether tested or vaccinated, since March 2020, a situation that has caused growing impatience among Europeans in particular, causing painful personal and family situations. This summer, the French tour operators, they said they were optimistic about the resumption of tourism to New York or the national parks. They even wanted to believe in reopening the borders to Europeans in July. Missed. It must be said that the economic stakes are colossal, we support at Marco Vasco (Figaro group), one of the destination specialists. “There are plenty of factual reasons to hold on to, argued its CEO, Alexandre Vercoutre during an interview at the beginning of the summer. Before the pandemic, the international tourism industry employed roughly 1.2 million people in the United States. Two thirds of jobs, or around 800,000 jobs, were destroyed during the health crisis ”.
The announcement comes at the right time in a context of great tension between France and the United States over a sale of submarines, but Jeff Zients, without commenting on a possible diplomatic aim, insisted on the fact that the decision itself was “dictated by science“.
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