Coronavirus

Coronavirus USA: Under new EU ruling, can Americans travel to Europe?

The European Union has drafted an initial 'safe list' of countries from which the bloc will allow non-essential travel as of 1 July.

Coronavirus USA: Under new EU ruling, can Americans travel to Europe?
GUGLIELMO MANGIAPANE REUTERS

The European Union has excluded the United States from its initial "safe list" of countries from which the bloc will allow non-essential travel from Wednesday, July 1st.

The 27-member bloc gave majority approval on Tuesday to leisure or business travel from 14 countries beyond its borders, the Council of the EU, which represents EU governments.

14 nation list

The countries are Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia and Uruguay.

China has also been provisionally approved, although travel would only open up if Chinese authorities also allowed in EU visitors. Reciprocity is a condition of being on the list.

Russia, Brazil and Turkey, along with the United States, are among countries whose containment of the virus is considered worse than the EU average, and so will have to wait at least two weeks for approval.

The move is aimed at supporting the EU travel industry and tourist destinations, particularly countries in southern Europe hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

It acts as a recommendation to EU members, meaning they could potentially set restrictions on those entering from the 14 nations.

Within hours of the EU announcement, Italy, which has one of the highest Covid-19 death tolls in the world, said it would opt out and keep quarantine restrictions in place for all nations that were not part of the free-travel Schengen area.

FILE PHOTO: Airline Woes Continue During The Coronavirus CrisisFILE PHOTO: SCHOENEFELD, GERMANY - JUNE 01: Passenger planes of discount airline EasyJet that have been temporarily pulled out of service stand parked at Berlin-Brandenburg Airport during the coronavirus crisis on June 01, 2020 in Schoenefeld, Germany.

Canada said it was extending its mandatory quarantine order for travellers until at the least the end of August and a travel ban for most foreigners until the end of July

Nicholas Calio who heads an U.S. airline trade group representing Delta Air Lines, American Airlines, United Airlines and others, said the U.S. government and EU had discussed potential enhanced screening of EU-bound Americans in recent days. He said he is hopeful that "at least on a limited basis" some American travel to the EU could resume soon.

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