Is international travel allowed? See reopening dates for Canada, Mexico, Bahamas and other spots

Jayme Deerwester, Rasha Ali and Curtis Tate, USA TODAY

Americans with a bad case of wanderlust may have to wait to vacation abroad – and while some countries have reopened or announced target dates to reopen, the pickings may be slim for a while.

Parts of the Caribbean and Europe have reopened from coronavirus restrictions, but the European Union extended its travel ban on Americans

The EU first started lifting international travel restrictions on July 1, welcoming visitors from 14 countries, including Canada, South Korea and Australia. The U.S. was left off that initial list, and Americans remain barred from visiting the bloc. 

It's worth noting that the U.S. State Department and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have not rescinded or downgraded their travel warnings. The State Department's global travel alert, first issued in March, is still in effect. For its part, the CDC still has its highest travel warning in effect for the United Kingdom, Ireland and much of Europe as well as China, Brazil and Iran.

While this is by no means an exhaustive list, here's an update on some of the countries that are most popular with American travelers:

Canada

When will the border open? Americans and Canadians won't be able to cross the border in either direction for nonessential travel until Aug. 21, according to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

What can travelers expect once they're allowed in? There's a major loophole in the border-closure policy: The U.S. Embassy in Ottawa said the order does not apply to "air, rail, or sea travel at this time, but does apply to commuter rail and ferry travel."

According to the Canadian Border Services Agency, anyone who is not a citizen or permanent resident of that country must prove they are traveling for an essential purpose, are only transiting or are an immediate family member of a citizen or permanent resident. They must also have a plan to quarantine for 14 days, unless exempted.

'It was the right thing':  Trudeau announces extension of US-Canada border closure

Mexico

When will the border open? Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf announced that theland border with Mexico would remain closed until at least Aug. 20.

But like the U.S.-Canadian closure order, the Mexican version does not apply to air, rail or sea travel, except for commuter rail and ferry travel.

Costa Rica

When will it reopen its borders? While the Central American country reopened to visitors from Europe and Canada on Aug. 1, it hasn't said when it will welcome back Americans.

What can tourists expect? Passengers entering Costa Rica from an approved flight must present negative COVID-19 test results taken within the last 48 hours and purchase insurance covering accommodations for quarantine and hospitalization, should they get sick. Passengers must also complete digital epidemiological forms, available in multiple languages.

Caribbean

Anguilla

When will it reopen its borders? Borders are closed for general travel until at least Oct. 31.

According to the U.K. government, those allowed in may be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival in Anguilla, and those allowed in will have to self-quarantine for 14 days in a government-run or government-approved quarantine facility. This rule applies to Anguillans, people with Anguilla resident status or holders of valid work permits.

As of July 31, however, visitors from regions with active cases of less than 0.2% of their population can travel to Anguilla, though they must follow protocols and quarantine rules. 

Other exceptions to this rule are for medical emergencies and evacuations, which must be approved by the chief medical officer; people looking to leave the country; and repatriation of Anguillians from areas with active cases of less than 0.2% of their populations. These people also need to follow protocols and quarantine rules.

Aruba

When will it reopen its borders? The Aruba Tourism Authority says the island is open to tourists but with restrictions.

What can tourists expect? All visitors must complete a disembarkation card with contact-tracing details such as their date of birth, passport information and the duration of their stay as well as completing a health assessment interview. While all visitors 15 and older must present a negative PCR test result, visitors from hot-spot states must complete their test 72 hours before departure or take one test before leaving and a second upon arrival at the airport. Others may opt to be tested upon arrival. The testing fee is $75. 

Bahamas

When will it reopen its borders? After barring Americans from entry earlier this month as COVID-19 cases resurged, the Bahamas issued an update on July 31 saying travelers from the United States are once again welcome, so long as they follow strict protocol, including a mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival.

What can tourists expect? Travelers can quarantine in a private residence or rented accommodation, such as an Airbnb, where it's possible to isolate in a bedroom with a connected bathroom; in a hotel room with a connected bathroom; or on a private boat. If travelers don't have access to an approved quarantine location, then they will have to spend two weeks in a government-mandated quarantine facility, at their own expense.

Travelers will also have to download an app on their phones to assist with contact tracing. Refusing to download the app is a deportable offense. They must also apply for a Bahamas health visa and have a negative COVID-19 PCR test result from an accredited lab that was taken within 10 days.

After the 14-day quarantine, travelers will need to test negative on another COVID-19 test in order to leave quarantine. 

Barbados

When will it reopen its borders? The island has reopened to U.S. tourists with with restrictions as of July 12.

Barbados' tourism site says that all visitors must complete an online customs entry form. And while an advance COVID-19 test is not required, one is recommended in order to have your application form fast-tracked; anyone who doesn't provide one will be tested upon arrival.  

Cayman Islands

When will it reopen its borders? According to a press release published July 22, the Cayman Islands will begin a phased reopening to tourists starting Sept. 1.

What can tourists expect? The British Overseas Territory is collaborating with BioIntelliSense, a U.S.-based biotech company that produces medical-grade sensors for continuous health screenings. These sensors, called BioButtons, can passively monitor arriving passengers' heart rates, respiratory rates and skin temperature for symptoms of COVID-19.

In the first phase of reopening, visitors and returning residents must register for permission to travel on a government-arranged repatriation flight or by private air. All passengers over the age of 10 must provide results of a negative PCR test within 72 hours of traveling.

Eligible travelers can choose to wear a BioButton and self-isolate in their choice of residence for five days before taking a second PCR test. If negative, they must continue wearing a BioButton for nine more days, but they will not be required to self-isolate. Those who choose not to wear a BioButton must quarantine in a government-managed facility for 14 days.

Dominica

When will it reopen its borders? According to a press release issued July 21, Dominica will reopen its borders to international travelers Aug. 7 — so long as travelers comply with a lengthy list of health and safety protocols.

What can tourists expect? All passengers must submit a health questionnaire at least 24 hours prior to their arrival in Dominica and show notification of clearance to travel. They must also submit a negative PCR test result recorded within 24 to 72 hours before their arrival. Upon arriving, passengers must wear face masks at all times up to and including departure from the airport, follow physical-distancing guidelines, practice good respiratory and personal sanitization, and obey the instructions of health care staff and officials.

As part of the disembarkation process, arriving passengers must also sanitize their hands, undergo a health assessment that includes a temperature check, provide confirmation of their health questionnaires and negative PCR test results, and undergo test screening with a negative result.

Grenada

When will it reopen its borders? Americans are allowed back in Grenada, but because the U.S. is considered a high-risk country, there are additional requirements.

What can tourists expect? According to the government's entry requirements document, visitors from high-risk countries must present a completed health form and a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken no more than 72 hours before travel. They will also have to take a second CPR test at their own expense within 48 hours of arrival and quarantine in a government-approved facility until the results come back. They must also download Grenada's contact-tracing app by the time they arrive and keep it on their phones for the duration of their quarantine period, which may last up to 14 days. They will also be required to wear a geofencing watch for that period.  

Jamaica

When will it reopen its borders? Jamaica's tourism board said the Caribbean island began welcoming back international tourists on July 15. 

What can tourists expect?  While all tourists must complete an online travel authorization form and undergo a health screening, those coming from high-risk states such as Arizona, Florida, New York, and Texas must also upload a negative COVID-19 PCR test result taken within 10 days of arrival in Jamaica.

In a press release, Jamaica's Tourist Board also warned that travelers from areas deemed not to be high-risk may still be subject to testing. In addition, it said, "Those with negative results – as well as those who do not require testing – must adhere to the Stay in Zone order, which requires persons to remain at their hotel or resort within the Resilient Corridor for the duration of their stay. Those who are screened and assessed and show symptoms upon arrival will be subject to swab testing and must quarantine in their hotel room until test results are available."

Puerto Rico

When will it reopen its borders? Tourists are already being welcomed back in this U.S. territory.

What can tourists expect? Starting July 15, all passengers have to wear a mask and must take a molecular test 72 hours prior to their arrival. The test results must be submitted to officials at the airport. Travelers who test positive for the virus or refuse to hand over results or do not yet have results available will be forced into a two-week quarantine. During that time, they have to undergo a molecular test and share the results if they want to be released from quarantine, said Puerto Rico Health Secretary Lorenzo González.

St. Barts

When will it reopen its borders? According to its website, St. Barts is currently open to citizens of Schengen Treaty (European) countries. It has not said when it will welcome back Americans.

What can tourists expect: Visitors ages 11 and up must present a negative COVID-19 test taken with 72 hours of travel and give a sworn statement that they have not had exhibited symptoms or been in contact with someone who tested positive within the last 14 days. A second test within the seven days after arrival is also encouraged. 

St. Lucia

When will it reopen its borders? The island's tourism board says it is open. 

What can tourists expect? All arriving passengers must have a negative result from a PCR test taken no more than seven days before arriving in St. Lucia, the island's tourism site advises. Once there, they must wear face masks and practice social distancing.

If you're headed for St. Lucia, pack your hiking boots because the UNESCO-listed Pitons are not to be missed.
If you're headed for St. Lucia, pack your hiking boots because the UNESCO-listed Pitons are not to be missed.

St. Maarten

When will it reopen its borders? St. Maarten reopened to U.S. tourists on Aug. 1, according to its tourism board.

What can tourists expect? All passengers must take a COVID-19 test with proof of a negative result no more than 72 hours before arrival. Children who are 10 or younger do not need to take a COVID-19 test. Travelers also must fill out a health declaration form (and should bring a printout with them).

Additionally, all travelers will be subject to a mandatory temperature check on arrival. Passengers showing symptoms will have to take a COVID-19 test, at additional cost to the traveler.

Turks & Caicos

When will it reopen its borders? According to its official tourism site, the British territory is open to U.S. tourists. 

What can tourists expect? Travelers need a negative COVID-19 PCR test from an accredited laboratory taken within five days of travel (the travel day does not count towards that period). The test result is a requirement to obtain a TCI Assured Travel Authorization to enter the country.

U.S. Virgin Islands

When will it reopen its borders? The islands of St. Croix, St. Thomas and St. John are open to tourists but with restrictions.

What can tourists expect?  According to the USVI tourism bureau, any visitor aged 15 or up must must complete a pre-screening form. Furthermore, anyone who  resides in Puerto Rico or a state where the COVID-19 positivity rate is higher than 10% must provide a negative COVID-19 antigen (molecular/PCR/rapid) test result received within five days prior to travel or a positive COVID-19 antibody test result received within four months of travel. Travelers who have spent more than seven days in a hot spot must also submit a test. (Note that the five-day window is related to receiving test results, not taking the test itself.) 

Europe

Although European Union countries reopened to some international travelers on July 1, the bloc has barred Americans from entering for the time being due to the United States' high COVID-19 infection rate. .

EU officials determined which countries' visitors will be allowed by looking at the trend in new infections, testing capacity, contact tracing and other steps countries have taken to contain the virus outbreak inside their borders, Kasper Zeuthen, a senior media adviser for the EU’s delegation to the U.S., told USA TODAY.

European Union:  Bloc bars Americans as bloc reopens to international visitors July 1

Adalbert Jahnz, a spokesman for the European Commission in Brussels, the EU's executive branch, told USA TODAY that lists would likely be reviewed every two weeks as new information about coronavirus trends in different countries becomes apparent. 

Here are more details about specific countries' plans:

Austria

When will it reopen its borders? Austria began accepting visitors from some European countries June 16. 

According to the country's official tourism site, visitors entering Austria from other Schengen treaty countries must submit a medical certificate showing a negative COVID-19 test that was issued in the last four days. Tourists from outside the EU still may not fly into Austria for the time being.

Greece

When will it reopen its borders? Greece started its tourism season on June 15 and expanded international flights to its regional airports on July 1.

Greek authorities say incoming travelers arriving at the country’s land border with Bulgaria will have to carry a negative COVID-19 test results issued within the previous 72 hours.

Iceland

When will it reopen its borders? Tourism minister Thordis Kolbrun Reykfjord Gylfadottir announced earlier this month that Iceland, which is part of the European Economic Area but not an EU member country, will begin easing restrictions on foreign tourists no later than June 15. 

One condition of admission is that visitors must either be tested for coronavirus or spend two weeks in quarantine. However, citizens of countries that provide government records documenting a clean bill of health can opt to submit those instead, Reuters reported. 

Regardless of which option visitors choose, they will be asked to download a contact-tracing app. 

“Iceland’s strategy of large-scale testing, tracing and isolating have proven effective so far,” Gylfadottir told Reuters, explaining the country's relatively low rate of infection and death as well as its quick rebound.

Spain

When will it reopen its borders? On Saturday, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced that the country would be open to international tourism starting in July, Madrid-based newspaper El Pais and Reuters reported.

“Spain needs tourism and tourism needs security,” Sanchez said.

According to The Financial Times, tourism accounts for 12% of Spain's gross domestic product. It welcomes 80 millions tourists each year.

Italy

When will it reopen its borders?  Italy, which is one of the European countries hit hardest by the coronavirus, will relax its border restrictions on June 3. At that time, Italians can travel between regions or to other European Union countries and the United Kingdom, and citizens of those countries can travel to Italy.

France

When will it reopen its borders? French citizens can travel within a 100-kilometer (62 mile) radius of where they live, but for now, its borders remain closed.

Germany

When will it reopen its borders? Germany continues to restrict entry to non-European Union citizens through at least June 15.

When will the rest of Europe reopen its borders? Not until after June 15 and probably later than that for non-EU citizens.

Earlier this month, the European Union proposed that Schengen Area members and associated countries keep their borders closed to non-EU nationals until June 15 so they could continue to coordinate the continent's response to the pandemic. Nearly all of the 30 countries involved have adopted the proposal.

In mid-April, the European Union Commission presented a phased roadmap that will first restore free movement between member countries and then relax external border restrictions during the second stage.

Good news for British citizens yearning to travel: The EU also said that citizens of the United Kingdom will continue to be treated as EU citizens until the end of the transition period and would be able to travel once internal borders are relaxed.

Croatia

When will it reopen its borders? Much of Europe may not be welcoming Americans, but Croatia allows American tourists as of July 1.

"As of July 1, 2020, all EU/EEA nationals and individuals holding permanent residence in the EU/EEA countries can enter Croatia freely, without restrictions," according to the U.S. Embassy in Croatia. "All other foreign nationals, including U.S. citizens, may enter Croatia for business, tourism, or other pressing personal reasons, if they provide relevant proof."

United Kingdom

When will it reopen its borders? Beginning June 8, travelers couldenter the UK, but they must provide contact information and self-isolate for 14 days, or face fines.

Asia and the South Pacific

Australia

When will it reopen its borders? Not for at least three more months, according to an April 23 statement by the country's chief medical officer, Brendan Murphy. And the only mention of international travel in Prime Minister Scott Morrison's reopening plan comes in the final stage, when the country will consider allowing in other Pacific islanders and international students.

Bali

When will it reopen its borders? Bali started putting together its reopening plan for tourism, including allowing foreign tourists beginning Sept. 11.

Cambodia

Foreign travelers arriving in Cambodia need to pay a $3,000 deposit after getting to the airport to cover COVID-19 testing in addition to potential treatment (with more specifics on the financial details here).  

China

When will it reopen its borders? The country where the pandemic began in December briefly reopened its borders to non-citizens before closing them again in late March due to an influx of new cases. It has not said when it plans to relax those restrictions.

India

When will it reopen its borders? The Government of India passed a new order June 26, stating that air travel to and from India will be suspended until July 15, 2020 at midnight India Standard Time.

Jordan

When will the border open? The Jordanian government says it will begin reopening airports to international travelers in August after sealing its borders in March.

Travelers from a list of approved, low-risk countries must pass a coronavirus test at least 72 hours before departure and will get a second test upon arrival in Jordan, Transportation Minister Khaled Saif says.

What can tourists expect? Jordan will require incoming tourists to download Aman, the government’s contact-tracing mobile application, for the duration of their stay in the country.

The Maldives

When will the border open?  The island, located off the southern tip of India, reopened on July 15. 

What can tourists expect? According to the Maldives' official tourism site, visitors need:

  • A confirmed booking at a registered lodging establishment

  • Proof of sufficient funds

  • Confirmed return ticket

  • Completed Health Declaration Form to be filled out twice:  24 hours before your flight to the Maldives and once more before you depart from the Maldives.

  • On-arrival visas (free for 30 days)

Their website also notes that all tourists will undergo a temperature check upon arrival and may be chosen for a random, voluntary and free COVID-19 PCR test. And while quarantine is not required for anyone who does not display COVID-19 symptoms, masks are mandatory at the airport, during domestic travel and in all enclosed public spaces.

Singapore

When will the border open? National Development Minister Lawrence Wong announced that travelers to Singapore must be tested for COVID-19 starting on June 18. 

Wong saidtravelers must bear the cost of their own tests, stating "up to now, the cost of tests and the cost of stay-home notice facilities have been borne by the government. But looking ahead, as we reopen for more travel, we will want to move to a more sustainable position."

Africa

Morocco

When will it reopen its borders? On July 29, Morocco extended its state of emergency through Aug. 10. All regularly scheduled commercial flights to/from Morocco remain suspended, as do ferries to/from Spain.

Kenya

When will it reopen its borders? International travelers were welcomed back in the east African country as of Aug. 1, according to the website for the U.S. embassy in Nairobi

What can tourists expect? Visitors' temperatures must not exceed 99.5°F and they must not exhibit flu-like symptoms. Travelers (except those from California, Florida and Texas) will be exempted from quarantine if they present a negative PCR-based COVID-19 test conducted within 96 hours before travel. And while the country does not require a negative COVID-19 test result for entry, travelers should check to see whether their airline requires it as a condition for boarding. try as of Aug. 1, according to the website for the U.S. embassy in Nairobi

Also be aware that Kenya has extended its nightly, 9 p.m.-to-4 a.m. curfew through August. After that time, you must present evidence of travel reservations for that night. 

Rwanda

When will it reopen its borders? Commercial flights to Rwanda resumed on Aug. 1.

As of June 17, Rwanda has been open for tourism and international travel can resume for charter flights. However, passengers entering Rwanda must present two negative COVID-19 RT-PCR tests. According to the Rwanda Development Board, one test must be taken within 72 hours of departure, and they must take a second COVID-19 test before visiting tourist attractions. Those who can't test in their origin countries can get tested twice in Rwanda. 

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"Rwanda’s tourism industry is adapting to create a safe environment for travelers and operators, in order to thrive in these unprecedented times," Belise Kariza, the Chief Tourism Officer at Rwanda Development Board said in a statement. "We encourage all travel enthusiasts and nature explorers to take advantage of this unique opportunity to venture out and experience the beauty and adventure that our country has to offer."

Senegal

When will it reopen its borders? The west African nation reopened to international travel on July 15. However, the country's land and sea borders will remain closed until future notice.

What can tourists expect? "Despite the end of the State of Emergency in Senegal, some leisure facilities will remain closed indefinitely due to social distancing measures, and markets will remain closed once per week for cleaning," the embassy website advised. "Use of facial coverings remains mandatory in public and private offices, public places and markets, and on public transportation."

Tanzania

When will it reopen its borders? The eastern African nation reopened to international travel in June.

What can tourists expect? According to the U.S. State Department website, all visitors entering Tanzania must  present a valid COVID-19 certificate from an approved laboratory in a departure country tested within 72 hours before travel. They are also required to complete a health surveillance form on their inbound flight and turn it in upon arrival.

Middle East

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

When will it reopen its borders? Dubai opened its borders to international travelers on July 7.

What can tourists expect? In order to travel, tourists must take a COVID-19 test within 96 hours of their flight and show the airline a negative result, according to its official tourism site. Otherwise, they will be tested on arrival and required to isolate while awaiting the results, which travelers say typically takes a few hours.

Travelers must also have health insurance covering COVID-19 or sign a declaration agreeing to cover the costs of treatment and isolation. They are also required to register their travel details in an app.

Contributing: Jenna Ryu, Charles Trepany and David Oliver, USA TODAY; Associated Press

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Coronavirus travel: Reopening info for Bahamas, Canada, Mexico

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