The CDC has updated their guidance for fully vaccinated Americans and now says they can now resume travel with low risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19.
Fully vaccinated individuals can safely travel inside the US and internationally, the CDC said in new guidance released Friday, though they should still wear a mask when traveling on public transportation, including airplanes.
Fully vaccinated people who are traveling internationally do not need to be tested for COVID-19 before leaving the United States unless their destination requires them to be, and they do not need to self-quarantine upon arriving in the country, federal health officials said.
Vaccinated travelers can go overseas without getting a Covid-19 test before travel unless it is required by the global destination, the new guidelines say.
They were released as travel is picking up again in the U.S., especially due to spring break and Easter trips, after all but shutting down completely in the early months of the pandemic.
The CDC considers a person fully vaccinated two weeks after having the final shot of a COVID-19 vaccine. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses given a few weeks apart.
However, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said that while people can travel, they still should avoid doing so.
"Our guidance on an unvaccinated individual really is to limit travel to only essential travel with masking, protective - prevention strategies".
The CDC also recommends that people get tested three to five days after travel.
Airlines do not require COVID-19 tests or proof of vaccination for travel in the U.S.
"The science shows us that getting fully vaccinated allows you to do more things safely, and it is important for us to provide that guidance, even in the context of rising cases". Last month, the agency said fully vaccinated people could visit with each other indoors without wearing masks or social distancing.
The report also noted that almost 1.6 million passengers boarded domestic flights on Sunday, which was the most on any day since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. The agency cited "recent studies" of real-world evidence proving vaccines work outside of a clinical trial environment.
The U.S. began its vaccine rollout in mid-December.
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U.S. says vaccinated people can travel, with precautions
The new guidance comes as almost a third of the country's adult population has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. The agency's guidance, released in March, says people who have been fully vaccinated can meet indoors without masks.