The EU Opens External Borders To Visitors

CDC and US State Department discourage international travel
greece islands with boats and people in the market

The European Commission made a surprise announcement saying the EU's external borders will start a gradual reopening on July 1, 2020.

This action was forced by the country of Greece, which is already letting people from 15 non-EU countries visit its island for the summer season.

As of June 11, 2020, the European Commission is urging members of the Schengen visa-free travel area to coordinate on how external borders are opened.

"International travel is key to tourism and business, and for family and friends reconnecting," EU Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson, reported EuroNews.

The lifting of the travel ban is dependent on EU countries opening up their internal borders around June 15.

"You should open up as soon as possible," said Johansson when asked about internal borders, explaining that the European Centre for Disease Control had said internal borders were "not an effective way of dealing with the pandemic now".

However, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the US Department of State have not taken similar actions.

As of June 5, 2020, the CDC’s Level 3 Travel Alert remains in effect, which says ‘widespread ongoing transmission of a respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is occurring globally.’

Therefore, ‘the CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential international travel.’

Separately, the Department of State continues to advise U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19.

The State Department’s Level 4 Travel Advisory was issued on March 31, 2020.

However, on June 10th, US passport operations began to process new requests. 

The State Department says ‘As global conditions evolve and U.S. states begin to reopen, we are resuming operations in phases. We ask for your patience as we safely get back to work on your application.’

Vax-Before-Travel publishes international travel news.