COVID Travel Restrictions by Country (Latest Update)

Wondering about the latest COVID travel restrictions by country? Here’s what you need to know if you’re planning to travel.

COVID travel restrictions by country can change overnight, and it’s hard to stay on top of them – especially on a global scale. So, we scoured the internet and put together a guide on the current travel restrictions worldwide, including border status, COVID testing, and quarantine requirements. Many countries are reopening their borders for international travel – and you’re not the only one with itchy feet.

The Latest COVID Travel Restrictions by Country

United States

In late 2020 and throughout much of 2021, the United States had more COVID cases than any country in the world. Cases have declined over the past few weeks, and despite surges of the delta variant, the country opened to fully vaccinated international travelers on November 8th 2021. As of January 2021, the CDC requires all passengers flying into the US from overseas to take a COVID-19 test within three days of departure – applying to both non-citizens and citizens of the United States who are fully vaccinated.

Early in November, current restrictions on visitors to the US, including a ban preventing tourists from driving into the country from Canada and Mexico was lifted, but only for fully vaccinated travelers (at least 14 days past their final dose), including a ban on all tourists traveling from China, Iran, India, South Africa, Europe’s Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, and the Republic of Ireland. 

Mexico

Already in June 2020, Mexico began a slow regional reopening, and most restrictions have been lifted. Widespread community transmission remains a concern. The country eagerly opened its borders to Americans and has yet to require testing for entry. Initially only beach destinations like Cancun, but now even Mexico City is open for tourism.

All airports throughout the country are open to Americans, with enhanced screening and cleaning procedures in place and health checks – but no testing requirements.

As of January 2021, all tourists traveling from the US to Mexico via plane are required to show a negative COVID test taken within three days of departure. As of November, unvaccinated US citizens and residents returning from Mexico to the US must present a negative test within one day of their flight.

Many Mexican resorts have started to provide on-site rapid and PCR testing for guests returning to the US.

The US/Mexico land border reopened in November, and fully vaccinated travelers can enter the US from Mexico by land. Proof of vaccination is required, but a negative COVID test is not for land-border entry.

Currently, all tourists traveling to Mexico are not required to take a pre-departure COVID test, but traveler information forms must be completed upon arrival.

Brazil

All passengers entering or transiting through Brazil must have a negative COVID RT-PCR test taken at most 72 hours before departure or a negative COVID antigen test taken at most 24 hours before departure. Test results must be in English, Spanish, or Portuguese. In addition, all passengers and airline crew must complete a traveler’s health declaration form before departure and present it upon arrival – it can be found here.

Bahamas

The Bahamas experienced several obstacles with its reopening, initially opening up in July 2020, then shutting down again, and then reopening to international travelers in October 2020.

Passengers entering the Bahamas must have a negative COVID test taken a maximum of 5 days before arrival. A rapid test is accepted for travelers between the ages of 2 and 11 years old, as well as passengers with a COVID vaccination certificate showing they are fully vaccinated. Tests must be uploaded to www.travel.gov.bs, and all passengers must have an approved Bahamas Travel Health Visa.

More details on pre-travel testing and travel insurance requirements can be found on www.bahamas.com/travelupdates.

There are nightly curfews from midnight to 5 AM.

The CDC’s advisory for the island is Level 3: High Level of COVID-19.

Source: Unsplash

Cuba

All passengers traveling to Cuba must complete a “D’Viajeros” form found here before departure or upon arrival. In addition, they must have a COVID vaccination certificate or a printed negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result issued at most 72 hours before arrival if arriving from a country other than the USA. All passengers could be subject to testing and medical screening upon arrival.

At the moment, the US State Department has a Level 4: Do Not Travel advisory in place for Cuba. However, there are several other restrictions for US travelers visiting Cuba unrelated to the pandemic which remain in place.

France

All travelers from the EU are not required to present compelling reasons for travel to France but must comply with the requirements for the country category they are traveling from, including their vaccination status. List of country categories are available here.

  • Green Countries:
    • Fully vaccinated passengers can enter France without restrictions.
    • Non-vaccinated passengers must take a COVID test less than 72 hours before departure.

  • Orange Countries:
    • Fully vaccinated passengers can enter France without restrictions.
    • Non-vaccinated passengers must have a compelling reason for travel, must take a COVID test less than 72 hours before departure, may be subject to random testing on arrival, and must self-isolate for seven days.

  • Red Countries:
    • Fully vaccinated passengers can enter France without restrictions.
    • Non-vaccinated passengers must have a compelling reason for travel, must take a COVID test 48 hours before departure, will be subject to random testing on arrival, and must undergo mandatory 10-day quarantine.

Germany

EU Citizens:

And citizens of Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Norway, and Iceland may enter Germany for any valid purpose provided they have a negative COVID test result, or proof of vaccination or recovery when entering the country.

Non-EU Citizens:

Germany allows unrestricted entry for residents of the following countries and regions:

  • UAE
  • Bahrain
  • Kuwait
  • Jordan
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • Uruguay
  • Hong Kong
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • Taiwan
  • Macao
  • Moldova
  • Rwanda

All travelers from the above countries must present a completed vaccination certificate with any approved vaccine by the Paul Ehrlich Institute administered at least 14 days before travel or provide a negative COVID test result or proof of recovery.

Italy

Italy has different entry regulations depending on where you are traveling from. However, all passengers must complete a Digital Passenger Locator Form (DPLF) to travel to Italy.

  • List A: The Republic of San Marino and the Vatican City State have no limitations.
  • List B: States and territories with low risk are identified with those in List C.
  • List C: Free movement is allowed to and from these countries for any reason provided that travelers have not passed through any countries in List E 14 days before entering Italy:
    • Austria
    • Belgium
    • Bulgaria
    • Cyprus
    • Croatia
    • Denmark (including the Faroe Islands & Greenland)
    • Estonia
    • Finland
    • France (including Guadeloupe, Martinique, Guyana, Reunion, Mayotte)
    • Germany
    • Greece
    • Ireland
    • Latvia
    • Lithuania
    • Luxembourg
    • Malta
    • Netherlands
    • Poland
    • Portugal (including Azores & Madeira)
    • Czech Republic
    • Romania
    • Slovakia
    • Slovenia
    • Spain
    • Sweden
    • Hungary
    • Iceland
    • Norway
    • Liechtenstein
    • Switzerland
    • Andorra
    • Monaco

  • List D: Travelers coming in from list D are required to undergo a 5-day self-isolation, as long as they have not entered any country in List E 14 days before entering Italy and have both a vaccination certificate and a negative COVID test result:
    • Saudi Arabia
    • Australia
    • Bahrain
    • Canada
    • Chile
    • United Arab Emirates
    • Japan
    • Jordan
    • Kosovo
    • Israel
    • Kuwait
    • New Zealand
    • Qatar
    • Rwanda
    • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (including Gibraltar, the Isle of Man, Channel Islands and British bases on the island of Cyprus)
    • Republic of Korea
    • Singapore
    • United States of America
    • Ukraine
    • Uruguay
    • Taiwan
    • Hong Kong

  • List E: All states and territories not mentioned in the other lists are only permitted to travel to Italy for work, health reasons, study reasons, absolute urgency, or return to one’s domicile.
Source: Unsplash

Portugal

Travel to Portugal is still limited to essential travel, with some exceptions. All passengers traveling to Portugal must complete an electronic Passenger Locator Card (PLCe) and present it upon boarding. All travelers holding a valid EU Digital COVID Certificate or vaccination/recovery certificate (even if issued by a non-EU country that accepts the EU Digital COVID Certificate) may travel to Portugal for non-essential reasons.

In addition, the following travelers may transit through, enter, and exit from Portugal:

  • EU nationals and nationals of Schengen associated countries.
  • Third-country nationals with legal residence in an EU member state.
  • Third-country nationals traveling for professional reasons, study, family, health, or humanitarian reasons.
  • Nationals and legal residents of the following countries – on condition that they are arriving on a direct flight or transiting only through the international area of any other airport:
    • Argentina
    • Australia
    • Bahrain
    • Brazil
    • Canada
    • Chile
    • China
    • Colombia
    • Hong Kong
    • Jordan
    • Kuwait
    • Macau
    • Namibia
    • New Zealand
    • Peru, Qatar
    • Rwanda
    • Saudi Arabia
    • Singapore
    • South Korea
    • Taiwan
    • Ukraine
    • United Arab Emirates
    • United States of America
    • United Kingdom
    • Uruguay

Spain

As per the Ministry of Home Affairs, entry into Spain is restricted to the following categories of passengers:

  • A: Regular residents of the EU, Schengen states, Andorra, Monaco, Vatican, or San Marino
  • B: Holders of long-term visas issued by a Schengen state
  • C: Healthcare professionals
  • D: Transport personnel, sailors, and aeronautical personnel carrying out these activities
  • E: Diplomatic, consular, military, or international organization personnel
  • F: Students pursuing their studies in a Schengen state
  • G: Highly qualified workers whose labour is essential
  • H: People traveling for urgent family matters
  • I: People whose entry is needed for humanitarian reasons
  • J: Legal residents of countries classified as non-risk
  • K: People who provide a vaccination certificate so long as the certificates have been issued by competent authorities.

Travelers from EU countries can enter Spain provided they present a vaccine certificate or negative COVID test result. Travelers who are not from EU countries can enter Spain with only a vaccine certificate unless they fall under the above A – I categories, in which case they must provide a negative COVID test result.

Exceptions to the above can be found here.

United Kingdom

Passengers entering or transiting through the UK must have a negative COVID test result taken at most three days before departure. All travelers entering the country must complete a Public Health Passenger Locator Form. Passengers may be subject to a COVID-19 test on day two and day eight after arrival at their own expense but this doesn’t apply to passengers with a COVID vaccination certificate.

Red list passengers (even if fully vaccinated):

  • Must provide negative COVID test results within three days of departure.
  • Must book a managed quarantine package before entering the country.

Unvaccinated travelers or travelers vaccinated with unauthorized vaccines.”

  • Must provide proof of a negative COVID test taken within three days of departure to the UK.
  • Book tests for days 2 and 8 before entering the country – the day of arrival is day 0.
  • Arrange for self-quarantine in private accommodation for ten full days after arrival.

Fully vaccinated passengers:

  • Must book a test for day two before entering the UK.
  • Have proof of your vaccination status with you during travel.

Australia

All travelers entering or traveling via Australia must provide evidence of a negative COVID test result taken three days or less before the scheduled departure. Passengers who have previously had COVID may travel if they provide clearance documentation from a medical provider. More information on that can be found here. All travelers must complete the Australia Travel Declaration before their flight.

Verifying your vaccination status as an overseas traveler might mean you don’t have access to an Australian government-issued International COVID Vaccination Certificate (ICVC). In this case you can request your ICVC through an Australian Medicare online account on myGov.

Exemptions to pre-departure testing apply to children under the age of 4, international aircrew, travelers entering Australia on a ‘Green Safe Travel Zone’ flight, and exceptional circumstances. More information on exemptions for international travelers can be found here.

Each state in Australia has specific guidelines, requirements and fees for mandatory quarantine in the event that quarantine is required.

Source: Unsplash

New Zealand

At the moment the New Zealand border is closed to almost all travelers. Travelers who are traveling to New Zealand must seek approval and book accommodation at a managed isolation facility beforehand.

The following countries are considered very high risk:

  • Brazil
  • India
  • Pakistan
  • Papua New Guinea

All other travelers must spend at least 14 days outside a very high-risk country before flying to New Zealand. All travelers coming from high-risk counties must present a negative COVID test certificate from a government-approved lab taken 72 hours before travel. Any other test will not be accepted. Please refer to the government website.

All non-New Zealand citizens must be vaccinated for COVID before flying to New Zealand and will need to declare that they have been vaccinated when they book their managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ). Even if you are vaccinated, you will need to have a negative pre-departure test result and spend 14 days in MIQ.

Traveling During a Pandemic: FAQs

Are there any other types of travel restrictions besides COVID-19 tests and quarantines?

These are the two main types of travel restrictions or requirements to travel to another country. Keep in mind that testing options are continually expanding. Different countries accept different results or multiple test types, so it’s best to check each individual country’s requirements.

What should I do if I get COVID-19 while in another country?

If you get COVID-19 while in another country, you should follow the local authority’s recommendations, including hospitalization, self-isolation, and testing. Make sure you contact your travel insurance company and travel provider to inform them of your situation.

What should I do if the borders of the country I am visiting close?

Depending on your country of origin, you may need to change your departure date and return home as soon as possible. If this is the case, make sure you contact your travel provider.

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Jenny Cohen Drefler

Jenny Cohen Derfler

Air Dr CEO & Co-Founder

Jenny is the CEO and one of the Co-Founders at Air Doctor. She spent more than 20 years at Intel, most recently as general manager of its manufacturing facility in Israel and before that in various engineering and manufacturing roles in Silicon Valley. Air Doctor is her second startup having previously founded electric vehicle company ElectRoad.