US ending COVID testing travel requirement

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Biden administration announced Friday that it’s ending a requirement for airplane travelers to test negative for COVID-19 before entering the U.S.

White House Assistant Press Secretary Kevin Munoz said that the U.S. would “end COVID-19 testing requirement for air travelers entering the country” in a tweet.

A senior airline source told NBC News the pre-departure testing rules will be lifted at 12:01 a.m. on Sunday.

Right now, all travelers, regardless of vaccination status or citizenship, are required to test within a day of travel to the United States.

Airline and tourism groups have been pushing the Biden administration for months to eliminate the testing requirement saying it is discouraging people from booking international travel.

Many other countries have lifted their testing requirements for fully vaccinated and boosted travelers in a bit to increase tourism.

Airlines for America President and CEO Nicholas E. Calio said in a statement: “The airline industry appreciates the administration’s decision to lift the pre-departure testing requirement in accordance with the current epidemiological environment. Lifting this policy will help encourage and restore air travel to the United States.”

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