Travel enthusiasts in all part of India are now always in the lookout for lifting of international travel restrictions. The pandemic has paralysed travelling to a great extent and hence as the world-wide countries have initiated to lift travel curbs; it is indeed a boon. Recently US has brought in relief for Indian travellers by lifting the restrictions imposed in the early 2020 as part of its polices to curb COVID-19 spread.
A recent news report has confirmed that Joe Biden, the US president, has signed a memoranda wherein the travel restrictions on India along with China and many countries of Europe, will be lifted. The order is in effective from 8th November, 2021.
The president stated, "It is in the interests of the United States to move away from the country-by-country restrictions previously applied during the COVID-19 pandemic and to adopt an air travel policy that relies primarily on vaccination to advance the safe resumption of international air travel to the United States".
What's in it for the Indian travellers?
US is a fascinating travel destination for many Indians. Before the pandemic had set in, the country experienced a huge footfall from Indian tourists every year. Be as a tourist or visiting family and friends, the country offers a plethora of places to visit and is very popular among the Indian travellers.
The recent lifting of the travel restrictions will be greatly welcomed by the Indians. Vacations can be planned seamlessly without the hassles of the curtailment in the norms and standards to be followed for COVID-19.
Important points to remember while travelling to US
But before embarking on a vacation to US, certain key points to be remembered as specified by the Biden administration office.
1. Travellers must be fully vaccinated before boarding the US bound airlines
2. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will accept any vaccine authorised for use by US regulators or the World Health Organization. It will also accept mixed-dose coronavirus vaccines from travelers
3. Vaccination documents need to be provided as extracted from the COWIN site
4. The last dose must be at least two weeks earlier than the travel date
5. Need to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of departure
6. Children under 18 are exempt and people with medical issues will be except from the new vaccine requirements. However they need to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 24 hours of departure
Which Indian vaccines are approved for entry into US?
Its important for Indian travellers to be aware of the fact that its only Serum Institute's Covishield vaccine, that is approved by WHO and is considered for entry into US. Bharat Biotech's Covaxin or Sputnik, are not yet in the approval list.
However India's foreign secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla, has expressed strong hopes that the WHO will soon grant approval to Covaxin. He stated, “It is not the administrative or political process, rather it is a technical process of WHO. Technical Committee will evaluate the submissions made by Bharat Biotech which created Covaxin. I am sure the approval of Covaxin from WHO will come at the soonest possible".
Once the approval is granted, it will pave the way for more travels to the US.
Still the good news is on and if you are a globetrotter, then its time now to plan for a grand vacation to the United States of America.
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