Ovation's weekly client e-newsletter, the Informed Traveler, keeps readers updated on travel industry news and trends.
Following is a recap of April's top 5 (most clicked by Ovation clients) e-newsletter stories.
As the demand for travel continues to increase in 2022, travelers should check their passport status to make sure they are still valid. Most countries require passports to have at least 6 months of validity after the return date of travel, as well as available pages for visa and country entry/exit stamps. Processing time for renewals can take up to 4-6 weeks and is subject to change as COVID-19 has placed unprecedented demands on the US Passport Office. CIBTvisas offers various renewal options and can fulfill US passport requests in as little as one to five days, subject to availability. In addition, CIBTvisas also provides a full line of passport services including first time passports, child’s passports, and passport name change services for US passport holders. For assistance with the passport process or to schedule an appointment, travelers can contact their Ovation travel consultants or call CIBTvisas at 877-304-8071.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has lowered its travel warning for several Caribbean islands this week, reports Travel + Leisure. The agency reclassified Saint Kitts and Nevis and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines under "Level 1," its lowest travel warning, indicating that there is a "low" level of COVID-19 at those destinations. Destinations are classified as a "Level 1" if there are fewer than 50 new reported cases per 100,000 people in the past 28 days. The CDC recommends travelers ensure they "are vaccinated and up to date" with their COVID-19 vaccines before traveling to any destination, and advises that, "Even if you are up to date with your COVID-19 vaccines, you may still be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19." In addition to the Caribbean Islands, the CDC classified Bangladesh, Haiti, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia, and the Philippines under "Level 1."
The Biden administration has stated that it is extending the COVID-19 requirement that non-US citizens crossing land or ferry terminals at the US-Mexico and US-Canada borders must be fully vaccinated, reports Skift. The requirements were first adopted in November 2021 as part of reopening the US to land crossings by foreign travelers after the borders had been closed since March 2020. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said the decision to extend the requirement came after consultation with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which says vaccines remain the most effective public health measure to protect people COVID-19. “The Biden-Harris administration is committed to protecting public health while facilitating lawful trade and travel, which is essential to our economic security,” Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said.
The Canadian federal government has further eased travel restrictions for entry into the country, reports Travel Pulse. As of April 25, fully vaccinated travelers entering Canada are no longer required to provide a quarantine plan upon entry. Additionally, they are no longer required to wear masks in public spaces, monitor and report if they develop signs or symptoms, quarantine if another traveler in the same travel group shows signs or symptoms or tests positive, and maintain a list of close contacts and locations visited. Additionally, unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children aged five to 11 no longer need a COVID test to enter Canada.
Meanwhile, pre-entry tests are still required for partially vaccinated or unvaccinated travelers ages 12 and older who are currently eligible to travel to Canada. All travelers are still required to use the ArriveCAN app to upload travel and vaccination information within 72 hours of their arrival to Canada and/or before boarding a plane or cruise ship destined for Canada. Further, all travelers, regardless of vaccination status, must continue to wear a mask on planes and within airports.