CDC Issues Guidance on Travel for Fully Vaccinated People

US says vaccinated people can travel with precautions

More than 56 million Americans are fully vaccinated, according to the CDC.

The major US airlines including American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and other trade groups had asked the CDC on March 22 to change its guidance to say "vaccinated individuals can travel safely".

Previously, the agency had cautioned against unnecessary travel even for vaccinated people, but noted that it would update its guidance as more people got vaccinated and evidence mounted about the protection the shots provide. A person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the last required dose of vaccine. Those who are not fully vaccinated should continue to self-quarantine for 7 days after travel and a negative test, or 10 days after travel if not tested. If they do travel, the agency says to get tested one to three days before the trip, and three to five days after.

The U.S.travel industry which has had a dismal year because of the Covid-19 crisis expects this announcement will help them come out of the slump though recently many Americans have ignored the guidelines and have started traveling in higher numbers. People should still wear a mask, socially distance and avoid crowds, the agency says.

- Vaccinated people should still get a negative COVID-19 test before boarding a flight to the USA, and be tested three to five days after returning.

The updated guidance also means travelers who are fully-vaccinated no longer need to get a COVID-19 test before and after travel, unless it is still required by the destination or airline. It added that vaccinated people returning to the United States do not need to self-quarantine unless it is required by state or local authorities.

The CDC has been slowly offering guidance on what people can do once fully vaccinated.

The CDC cited recent research on the real-world effects of the vaccines for its updated guidance.

The U.S. began its vaccine rollout in mid-December.

Masks are still recommended, along with social distancing and other precautions.

This latest guidance offers another step toward resuming normal activity for those who have received both doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna shots or one shot of the single-dose vaccine from Johnson & Johnson.

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