While US travelers are allowed in over 54 countries and territories, they are still largely barred from entering many countries around the globe. Research through credible resources, databases, and articles show that there is limited information on when other countries’ borders will be open to US travelers.
Also, there’s no precise indication of when they are expected to open. However, with the advent of the new vaccines, these could change sooner, as countries do impose border restrictions to prevent or manage the pandemic. Therefore, available insights have been provided below.
- European authorities imposed a travel ban on US visitors “to prevent the further spread of coronavirus throughout the Schengen Countries.” While travel restrictions were gradually lifted by Europe on July 1st to allow arrivals from designated countries including Canada, New Zealand, and Japan, restrictions have not yet been lifted for U.S. arrivals since the United States is currently the country with the highest number of coronavirus cases.”
- Leading epidemiologists in the EU reveal that chances of seeing the travel ban on US travelers lifted will depend largely on how successful the U.S. is in controlling the spread of COVID-19. While “there is no deadline for the ban being lifted, some health experts are already advising to avoid traveling to Europe before 2022.” Since the US has seen a significant spike in the number of cases following the general elections, the chances could be even slimmer.
- “For Europe to lift travel bans for a country’s travelers, the nation’s epidemiological situation must have stats close to or below the average of EU coronavirus cases as of 2 weeks prior.” Nevertheless, with the US posed to be the first nation to roll-out the new COVID vaccines as early as the year-end, there could be a loosening of the restrictions. “Travel restrictions should be lifted by the EU once the U.S. has the outbreak under control or is able to negotiate an exception to the European Union ban — whichever comes first.”
- There are other European countries that allow US visitors, nevertheless, they include the non-EU member states such as the UK and Serbia.
North America: Canada and Mexico
- While countries are lifting travel restrictions, “Canada and Mexico announced they are extending restrictions on U.S. travelers as coronavirus cases continue to rise.” The extension of border closures was exempted only for essential travels to October 21, although U.S. travelers are permitted to fly into Mexico.
- “The land border between the US and Mexico is closed to all non-essential traffic as part of COVID-19 measures. This is reviewed on a monthly basis. This closure applies primarily to tourism and recreational travel. Cargo, trade, and healthcare workers will still be able to cross the border. But travelers arriving from countries affected by COVID-19 will be screened.”
- In Canada, US passengers are not allowed to enter until 21 December 2020.
South America: Brazil, Colombia, Peru
- Brazil has been open for US travelers, with Covid restrictions lifted on 29 July 2020. However, “effective November 12, Brazil extended the restrictions on the entry of foreigners by land (unless for transit) and sea, through at least December 11.”
- Colombia and Peru also allow US travelers, as there are no specific travel restrictions on US travelers. Direct flights to Peru from certain locations in the U.S. have equally resumed.
Oceania: Australia and New Zealand
- “U.S. citizens cannot enter Australia or New Zealand, where new coronavirus cases are minimal.”
- “Australia enacted a travel ban on all non-residents and non-Australian citizens entering Australia although it announced quarantine-free travel from New Zealand to some areas of Australia.”
- New Zealand does not allow US visitors; however, “New Zealand citizens and permanent residents are permitted to enter New Zealand. And If a U.S. citizen is able to enter through such a status, they will be required to quarantine in a government-operated facility for 14 days.”
Asia: Japan, China, India
- “China and Thailand are still not allowing American visitors as the majority of Asia continue to keep international guests at bay.”
- While Japan recently eased up its travel restrictions, it only allows U.S. citizens, who have a resident or student status in Japan.
- While China allows foreign nationals with valid residence permits and visas to enter the country under certain conditions, from November 06, 2020, it increased the requirements for passengers seeking to enter China from the United States.
- Travel for tourism and most other short-term purposes is still not permitted, and there is no indication that this will change in the short term. Japanese government’s travel restrictions remain in place that prevent most U.S. citizens from entering the country. Japan has recently modified its policies, however, to permit some additional categories of travelers. This includes certain business travelers, if their organizations ensure proper pandemic control measures, as well as individuals moving to Japan as residents.