Sec. of Commerce: ‘Get vaccinated’ is way to get economy back on track
Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo told Americans to “get vaccinated” while giving an update on international travel.
White House, USA TODAY
Italy is adding additional testing and self-isolation requirements to American travelers on the heels of the European Union removing the U.S. from its safe travel list.
While the most dramatic policy changes affect unvaccinated travelers – who are still welcome to enter the country, so long as they take the time to self-isolate – vaccinated travelers will also have to jump through additional hoops with new testing requirements.
All travelers who have been in the U.S. in the last 14 days are subject to Italy’s heightened protocols prior to entry. To enter, all travelers, regardless of vaccination status, must:
- Take a molecular or antigenic swab coronavirus test with a negative result within 72 hours before arrival. Children under 6 are exempt.
- Fill out a digital passenger locator form, which aids contact tracing efforts if a traveler is exposed to COVID-19 during their trip.
Unvaccinated people must also self-isolate for five days and get tested again after the self-isolation period. According to the U.S. Embassy’s website, antigen tests in Italy cost about $25 while PCR tests cost about $75.
► EU takes US off safe country list: Recommends Europe travel restrictions tighten for Americans
► Can Americans visit Europe this fall?: It’s complicated. What travelers need to know after EU decision.
Prior to Italy’s newest entry mandates, all U.S. travelers were required to submit a passenger locator form and show proof of vaccination, proof of recovery or a recent negative COVID-19 test.
Travelers who want access to venues such as archaeological sites, theaters, and the indoor sections of restaurants, bars and cafes must also show a “Green Pass” that shows proof of vaccination, proof of recent recovery or negative results from a COVID-19 test within the past 48 hours.
On Monday, the EU said it no longer recommends its 27 member states ease restrictions on nonessential travel for all Americans as COVID-19 cases spike. New U.S. cases are averaging over 150,000 new cases per day with nearly 63% of the adult population vaccinated. Meanwhile, 70% of the adult population in the EU is fully vaccinated.
Follow USA TODAY reporter Bailey Schulz on Twitter: @bailey_schulz.