On Monday, the United States reopened its borders to fully vaccinated visitors from dozens of nations, ending more than 18 months of international travel restrictions that separated families from loved ones and cost the global travel industry hundreds of billions of dollars in tourism earnings.
Fully vaccinated passengers will be permitted to enter the United States under the new guidelines provided they can present proof of vaccination and a negative coronavirus test done within three calendar days of travel. Unvaccinated Americans and children under the age of 18 are exempt, but must take a test within one day after departure.
The shift has occurred just in time for the Christmas season, when the embattled tourist sector is anticipating an influx of overseas visitors, particularly in famous big-city locations such as New York, Los Angeles, and Miami. According to the U.S. Travel Association, the extended restriction on travel from 33 countries, including European Union members, China, India, and Iran, decimated the industry, resulting in losses of about $300 billion in visitor spending and more than one million American employment.
Natalia Vitorini, a 28-year-old student residing in Miami, waited for her parents to exit the morning’s first arriving aircraft from So Paulo, Brazil, with her 3-week-old son at Miami International Airport, a significant hub for travel to and from South and Central America.
Debora Vitorini and her husband, Sergio, arrived just after 6 a.m. They hadn’t seen one other since March of 2020. “I was waiting for the border to open so my mother could come visit my kid,” Natalia Vitorini explained.