All Britons travelling to USA from Monday must have negative Covid test

All Britons travelling to US from Monday must have negative Covid test

United Airlines said on Thursday that passengers on its flights from London Heathrow to the United States must present a negative Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours of departure beginning December 28.

But according to researchers on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Covid-19 Response Team, testing three days before the flight may not achieve much - reducing the risk of the virus spreading by only 5-9%.

The airline, which maintains a hub at Newark Liberty, is setting a similar requirement for travelers coming from the U.K.to its hubs in Chicago, Washington and San Francisco, adding a recent COVID-19 test to its "Ready-to-Fly" checklist for customers who have scheduled air travel at a time when much of the U.S.is gripped by a deadly second wave of the pandemic. On Monday, Delta moved to require health screenings on United Kingdom flights to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City.

The decision follows the emergence of a highly infectious new coronavirus variant in Britain, which has prompted many countries to shut their borders to travellers from there.

But he stressed there is "no evidence to suggest it is more lethal or causes more severe illness", or that vaccines will be less effective against it. If passengers choose not to take a test, the airline must deny boarding.

Passengers wishing to travel from the United Kingdom must get a PCR or antigen test and provide written documentation of the result to their airline, which will be required to double check the result before they allow a passenger to board.

S Africa rejects claim its COVIDvariant more risky than United Kingdom strain South Africa's health minister has rejected his British counterpart's claim that a new coronavirus variant in the country is more contagious or unsafe than a similar one in spreading the UK. United Airlines on Thursday agreed to do the same for its flights to Newark, New Jersey. Some 40 countries have imposed travel bans on Britain, leaving the island nation increasingly isolated. The airlines will accept both rapid antigen and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests.

But the French restrictions were particularly worrisome, given that Britain relies heavily on its cross-Channel commercial links to the continent for food this time of year. Click the link to confirm your subscription and begin receiving our newsletters.

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