The US is mulling opening its border to the UK, Ireland, the EU and Brazil despite high rates of COVID, according to Reuters.
The news agency claims five US and airline officials confirmed the plan, which is being considered because the country is now open to most others around the world.
Significantly, the apparent leak comes days after country’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new travel guidance recommending international travellers “get tested with a viral test one to three days before their flight to reduce spread during travel. Travellers should get tested three to five days after travel and stay home for seven days”.
It follows lobbying from a number of groups arguing that testing should replace entry bans around the world.
Reuters claimed the plan to open has won the backing of White House coronavirus task-force members, public health and other agencies. However, President Donald Trump has not made a final decision.
The current US border bans to EU visitors have been in place since mid-March, meaning all entrants must have spent 14 days outside of a ‘hostpot’ area.
Industry body Airlines for America said it had been “advocating for the federal government to set a national standard on testing in order to lift travel restrictions”.
Earlier on Thursday, World of Aviation reported how the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced it is developing its own set of mobile apps that will house passengers COVID-related health information, as well as provide them with up-to-date information about travel restrictions.
IATA said its apps will allow passengers to share COVID test results and vaccination certificates with airlines and governments, while providing vital travel information.
The new app will combine passport information with test and vaccination certificates received from participating labs around the globe.
It will also draw on global registries of health requirements and testing and vaccination centres.
The association reportedly plans to pilot its ‘Travel Pass’ platform by year-end, and have the app available for download on Android and Apple phones by the first half of next year.
Airlines and the association continue to press governments to replace travel-stifling quarantine requirements with systematic COVID-19 testing, with some success.