US Government Finally Removes Inbound Testing Requirement Easing Travel Stress On Tourists
The United States Government has removed the inbound testing requirement that forced anyone entering or returning to the states to take a COVID test. The announcement is excellent news for tourists and the tourism industry alike.
The change in rules will apply as of midnight on Sunday. Anyone entering the country before that time will still be required to show proof of a negative test.
The United States has lagged behind many other major countries in removing the last of its Covid rules but finally made the jump to return to complete normality with air travel.
Until recently, anyone entering or returning to the US was required to show proof of a negative Covid test no more than twenty fours hours before departing. Almost every other major country had previously removed similar rules kickstarting the tourist industry in each respective destination. But the US Government had clung to its entry rule despite removing several other major restrictions.
The requirements mandating masks on planes had already been removed, although the government was not the body that decided this. The land borders the US shares with Mexico and Canada had also had the testing requirement removed, meaning thousands of people were able to move freely into the country with no concern for whether they had Covid or not.
Leaving the inbound testing requirement in place was severely hampering tourists’ confidence in traveling. Although any American was free to travel, the concern of failing a test before returning home was deemed a risk too high for many. If someone had tested positive, they would be unable to board a plane to the US until a genitive test had been returned. This could have taken up to a week or more in some cases. Financial help was not offered for anyone in this situation, so hotel bills would have skyrocketed and more work would most likely have been missed.
Many hotels in Cancun and the rest of Quintana Roo ran their own programs that included a covid test in the room rate and allowed the test to be administered from their hotel rooms. With the test requirement disappearing, hotels will most likely cease these programs. It may have a positive impact on room rates, as hotel associations have cited Covid restrictions as one of the main factors in poor profit margins over the past few months.
With the restrictions gone, travelers should anticipate a surge in movement across the country. More than fifty percent of tourists in the US stated they were refraining from travel because of the restrictions. As those are eased, the biggest barrier for thousands of tourists has been removed which may prompt a massive surge.
If this is the case, further price hikes, both on airfares and room rates, can be expected. Prices have already been rising, and a flooded demand side of the market may impact that even more heavily.
Those already in Cancun or Quintana Roo need no longer worry about organizing their tests on the day of departure, again unless they are leaving before the midnight on Sunday deadline. If leaving on Saturday or daytime Sunday, a test will still be required and any programs in place should still cover these tests.
It is still recommended, as in most countries, to get a test and wear a mask, but there will be no legal repercussions for those who choose not to. Individual private establishments may continue their own policies, so if intending to travel, contact the hotel to ensure they are not requiring any of the policies.
Masks are no longer required in public places in Quintana Roo either, although once again, they are still recommended on public transport and smaller closed areas. They are required in the airport at Cancun, so make sure to have a mask handy when disembarking the plane.
Anyone intending to travel to Quintana Roo in the near future should keep on top of any developments as the rules can change quickly.
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