Beginning January 26, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will require international travelers to present a negative COVID-19 test (within three calendar days prior to departure) or documentation of COVID-19 recovery and clearance for travel in order to be permitted to board an aircraft in addition to a personal attestation. With limited exceptions, the new requirement applies to all airline passengers, regardless of immigration or citizenship status, two years or older and will remain in effect until December 31, 2021 in an effort to control the spread of the new variants of the COVID-19 virus.
Travelers must retain their testing and recovery documentation for two years for potential review by the airline or government authority. Both individual passengers and airlines are subject to criminal penalties for noncompliance with the CDC order.
Travel from Brazil, China, Iran, Ireland, the Schengen Area of Europe, and the United Kingdom is still subject to a public health travel restriction. Travelers from these areas must spend more than 14 days in a non-banned country prior to travel to the United States or obtain a national interest exception to the regional COVID ban in addition to satisfying the new CDC testing requirements in order to board an aircraft to the United States.
The CDC order does not apply to regional travel within the United States.
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