State Dept Travel Advisory - Level 3

European Schengen Travel Advisory Issued

US Department of State Travel Advisory suggests citizens reconsider traveling abroad

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The US Department of State is advising U.S. citizens to reconsider travel abroad at this time due to the global impact of COVID-19 disease. 

Announced on March 12, 2020, the State Department says ‘many areas throughout the world are now experiencing COVID-19 outbreaks and taking action that may limit traveler mobility, including quarantines and border restrictions.’ 

‘Even countries, jurisdictions, or areas where cases have not been reported may restrict travel without notice.

Furthermore, due to the current public health situation, many countries have begun implementing strict screening procedures in order to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.

Additionally, the State Department clarified that U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents will be permitted to return from the ‘European Schengen’ area.

The Schengen area encompasses the following 26 European countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

The Department of Homeland Security will be issuing instructions requiring U.S. passengers that have been in the Schengen area to travel through select airports where the U.S. Government has implemented enhanced screening procedures.

Please see the U.S.Travelers in Europe page for additional information on travel from the Schengen area.

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Previous US Presidential Proclamations Regarding Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2:

  • On January 31 President Trump signed a proclamation barring entry to the United States of most foreign nationals who traveled to China within the past 14 days. Read the full text of the proclamation here.
  • On February 29, President Trump signed a proclamation that expanded restrictions to include all aliens who were physically present within the Islamic Republic of Iran during the 14-day period preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States.  Read the full text of the proclamation here.
  • On March 11, President Trump signed a proclamation that restricts travel to the United States from foreign nationals who have recently been in certain European countries.  This does not apply to U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents. Read the full text of the proclamation here. And, the World Health Organization determined the COVID-19 outbreak constitutes a pandemic.

And, U.S. citizens, particularly travelers with underlying health conditions, should not travel by cruise ship at this time.  CDC notes an increased risk of infection of COVID-19 in a cruise ship environment.

The CDC also recommends institutes of higher education (IHE) consider postponing or canceling upcoming student foreign exchange programs. Students abroad may face unpredictable circumstances, travel restrictions, and challenges in returning home or accessing health care while abroad.

In addition, the CDC recommends IHE consider asking current program participants to return to their home country.  

For the latest information regarding COVID-19, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) website.

See a list of embassy websites for country-specific COVID-19 information

Coronavirus travel news is published by Vax-Before-Travel.