On Monday, the European Union removed, among other things, the United States and Israel from the list of countries not subject to travel restrictions. For both countries, the deteriorating coronavirus figures of recent times are the reason.
EU member states are urged to introduce stricter travel rules, such as mandatory quarantine and additional tests on arrival, for Americans and Israelis traveling to Europe. In theory, an EU state does not have to comply, but no country objected during the vote.
In order to get and stay on the safe travel list, a country should not have more than 75 Daily new coronavirus infections per 100,000 inhabitants over the last two weeks. Both the US (333 positive tests per 100,000 inhabitants) and Israel (621) are well above that.
The stagnant vaccination rate in both countries also contributes to the removal of the US and Israel from the safe list. Only 53 percent of Americans over the age of 18 are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Israel started the vaccination course successfully, but the vaccination rate among all those who are eligible for a vaccine has barely increased in recent months and is currently only just above 60%.
Since June, American travelers did not have to be quarantined upon arrival in Europe if they had been fully vaccinated or recently tested negative. The US itself kept its borders closed during the summer to non-essential travel by Europeans, which led to indignant reactions from the EU.
In addition to the U.S. and Israel, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, and the Lebanon, the list is reached. For these countries, all non-essential travel is also not recommended.