European Union Removes U.S. From Safe Travel List and Recommends Travel Restrictions

The European Union has removed the United States from its list of countries safe for nonessential travel, NBC News reports, and is now recommending that its 27 nations reinstate travel restrictions on U.S. visitors. This reverses The E.U.’s June advice that restrictions be lifted for U.S. travelers.

The E.U. also removed Israel, Kosovo, Lebanon, Montengro, and North Macedonia from the safe travel list. The list is reviewed every two weeks, and countries must not have more than 75 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days to be considered safe. Last week, the U.S. averaged 152,000 positive cases a day, with over 1,200 deaths a day.

“Nonessential travel to the E.U. from countries or entities not listed (…) is subject to temporary travel restriction,” the council’s statement said. “This is without prejudice to the possibility for member states to lift the temporary restriction on nonessential travel to the E.U. for fully vaccinated travelers.”

Travel rules will vary from country to country because the E.U. has no unified COVID-19 tourism policy. Restrictions may include quarantines, testing, or a complete ban on nonessential travel from the U.S.

Britain formally left the E.U. this year, so this guidance does not apply to them. Fully vaccinated individuals from the U.S. may currently visit the U.K. without quarantining but must take a COVID-19 test three days before arrival and two days after arrival.

The U.S. is not yet allowing nonessential travel from E.U. tourists. According to European Commission spokesperson for home affairs Adalbert Jahnz, the E.U. is in discussions with the U.S. administration regarding this.