U.S. airlines and business trade associations are calling on the Biden administration to drop the year-old requirement for U.S. residents to be tested for COVID before they fly back to the U.S. from any international trip.
“Surveys of air passengers indicate that pre-departure testing is a leading factor in the decision not to travel internationally. People simply are unwilling to take the chance that they will be unable to return to the U.S.,” the travel industry wrote in an open letter to Congress and the White House. Domestic leisure travel has returned to pre-pandemic levels in the U.S., but international travel is still down 38% compared to 2019.
Other countries, including Great Britain, Ireland, Greece, and Switzerland are dropping their pre-travel testing restrictions as Omicron cases decline.
If the Biden Administration is telling the truth that “it’s not pro-lockdowns” ending the testing requirement would be a perfect way to show they mean it.