September COVID Travel Restriction Update

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Autumn is just around the corner, and several additional Covid-19 travel restrictions may affect your international travel plans. Here are the latest guidelines for domestic and world travel.

United States

While the number of cases continues to rise across the United States, there are several domestic guidelines for knowing how to get into bars, tourist attractions, and sports venues.


Hawaii requires proof of vaccination or a negative test prior to arrival to enter the state quarantine-free.

The island of Oahu takes public health protocols one step further from September 13, 2021. By this date, individuals must be fully vaccinated to enter restaurants and other public areas without restrictions.

Unvaccinated travelers should have a negative diagnostic test no older than 48 hours.

New York City

As of September 13, 2021, the Key to the NYC Vaccine Requirement requires that you be fully vaccinated to eat indoors, attend concerts, visit museums, and attend other public gatherings.

San Francisco

San Francisco also has a vaccination mandate that can affect certain tourist activities. With effect from 20 August 2021, customers must show proof of vaccination to enter bars, restaurants, entertainment venues and gyms.


One of the newest places Americans can fly to again is Canada for non-essential travel reasons. You must be fully vaccinated to fly into the country and have a negative test prior to arrival to waive the mandatory 14-day quarantine period. The unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers must have a negative test before arrival and also self-quarantine for 14 days.

The US-Canada land border crossing will remain closed through at least September 21, 2021.


It will be a little more challenging to fly to Europe in the fall than in the summer months, when the continent reopened to American tourists. The new EU travel restrictions stem from the EU removing the US and several other countries from its safe list on 30 August 2021 due to increasing coronavirus infection rates.

Current EU laws do not allow a Schengen-wide travel ban for Americans and other “high-risk” nations. However, the EU recommends that each Member State require unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers to self-quarantine even with negative test results prior to arrival.

Prior to this change in guidance, several popular sites already required vaccination certificates to enter without restrictions. But now several nations have this policy that makes it harder for unvaccinated travelers to waive the mandatory quarantine.

Here are the entry requirements for several popular European resorts.


Italy now requires visitors to show proof of vaccination and have a negative test before arrival. The alternative is a self-quarantine for five days. Prior to September 1, 2021, Americans could only visit quarantine-free with a test prior to arrival on a “COVID-tested flight.”


In August, Germany began requiring incoming Americans to be fully vaccinated or show proof of cure to waive 10-day quarantine along with a negative test prior to arrival.

Unvaccinated travelers must have a negative test result before arrival and also quarantine for up to 10 days. However, a negative follow-up test on day five may waive the remaining days in quarantine.


France has one of the most advanced vaccine passport rollouts that several countries (and the EU) are rolling out. French residents and international visitors must upload their vaccination status or proof of a negative test result to visit bars, restaurants, tourist attractions and public transport.

The French entry requirements do not require quarantine for fully vaccinated travelers or unvaccinated travelers with a negative test result. If you are visiting France and have not been fully vaccinated, use a new negative diagnostic test every 72 hours to enter most public places.


Spain still has relatively lax access requirements for Americans. It is possible to get in quarantine-free with complete vaccination, proof of recent cure or a negative test before arrival.

Latin America and the Caribbean

Some Caribbean islands are tightening their screws and requiring proof of vaccination to visit.

Most tropical destinations accept proof of vaccination or a negative test prior to arrival to waive mandatory quarantine. Another common requirement is to have travel insurance that covers COVID-19 medical care and transportation expenses.

Some of the countries with the mildest entry requirements are:

  • Mexico
  • Costa Rica
  • Dominican Republic

Here is a closer look at some of the countries with recent changes to their entry requirements.

Turkey and Caicos

From 1 September 2021, visitors aged 16 or over must be fully vaccinated, have a negative test before arrival and qualify for travel insurance.

The Cayman Islands

The Cayman Islands are one of the last Caribbean nations to open up to tourism. This country is currently in the second phase of its five-step reopening plan.

The first fully vaccinated tourists can stay overnight on the island from 9 September 2021 (Phase 3). However, all travelers must adhere to a 5-day quarantine. Unvaccinated children of fully vaccinated guests can not come.

If this first step is successful, fully vaccinated guests will no longer need to be quarantined from 14 October 2021 (Phase 4).

Phase 5 tentatively starts on November 18, 2021, and unvaccinated children aged 11 or under can accompany fully vaccinated adults. All travelers can be quarantined. No unvaccinated adults can come to the island in 2021. The Cayman Islands government says it will evaluate entry requirements for unvaccinated tourists in January 2022.


Jamaica does not require proof of vaccination. However, visitors must complete a travel authorization form to verify that they are from an acceptable country.

In that case, visitors aged 12 or over must have a negative test before arrival or a qualifying antigen test.

The United States does not currently have a travel ban from Jamaica. However, several other nations are subject to a travel ban until September 17, 2021, including Trinidad and Tobago, Brazil, and other Latin American countries.

Maldives and Seychelles

The Maldives and Seychelles are two remote island nations that are open in Asia for an exotic location. Both countries require only a negative test before arrival. Tourists may also need to stay at approved resorts throughout their stay.


Several destinations require full vaccination and a negative test before arrival to waive the entry requirements. The Caribbean, select Latin American countries, and U.S. destinations have minor limitations, but it pays to be careful whether you travel far or stay local.

Related articles:

  • The latest vaccine requirements for travel
  • New travel restrictions between Europe and the United States
  • New travel warnings issued by the CDC

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