News at 9: US lifts COVID-19 test requirements for international travel, New mask mandate for airports in India

These Countries Are Open to Fully Vaccinated Indian Travellers

US will end Covid-19 testing requirement for air travelers entering the country, Japan reopens to tourists – but with strict rules, Masks mandatory in flight and at the airports in India and more in top stories of the day.

US Lifts COVID-19 Test Requirement for International Travel

An announcement is expected today that the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will lift its requirement for travelers to test negative for Covid-19 before entering the US, according to a senior administration official. The move, which CNN was first to report, will go into effect for US-bound air travelers at midnight on Sunday.
The CDC is lifting the restriction that the travel industry had lobbied against for months after determining it was no longer necessary “based on the science and data,” the official said. The CDC will reassess its decision in 90 days and if officials decide they need to reinstate it, because of a concerning new variant, for example, will do so. The measure has been in place since January 2021.

Japan reopens to tourists – but with strict rules

Japan reopened its borders to overseas visitors on package tours Friday in a move that will potentially boost the economy over time, though the initial spending impact is likely to be limited. Japan has been largely closed to foreign visitors since 2020, as it implemented some of the world’s toughest Covid-19 restrictions. And even now, as it opens its borders to tourists from nearly 100 countries and regions on Friday, it is putting new restrictions in place. This includes the requirement for travellers to be part of a package tour. They must also buy medical insurance and wear masks in all public places, including outside.
Under the rules, tourists will also have to avoid the so-called “three Cs”: closed spaces, crowded places and close contact settings.

DGCA: Masks mandatory in flights and airports in India

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has made masks mandatory in flight and at the airports in India. This is to be followed in all flights, across all airlines. The mask mandate has come after India recorded 5,233 in a span of just 24 hours. Before this, India was going through a ‘relaxed’ period of more than three months. This sudden shooting up of cases is alarming. Now that travel has fully resumed in India, both domestic and international, the risk of infection stays high. Travellers need to obey the mask mandate and follow basic sanitary practices for their own safety and also the safety of others.
As per the new mandate, failing to follow the mask mandate and not following COVID-19 safety protocols for passengers, will be categorised as “unruly” behaviour and such travellers may be deboarded if the need arises.

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