September COVID Travel Restrictions Update

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

United States

While case counts continue to increase across the United States, there are several domestic travel guidelines to know about how to enter bars, tourist attractions and sports venues.


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

The island of Oahu is taking public health protocols a step further, starting September 13, 2021. On this date, individuals must be fully vaccinated to enter restaurants and other common areas restriction-free.

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

New York City

Starting September 13, 2021, the Key to NYC vaccine requirement requires you to be fully vaccinated to partake in indoor dining, attend concerts, visit museums and attend other public gatherings.

San Francisco

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


One of the newest places that 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 pre-arrival test to waive the mandatory 14-day quarantine period. The unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers must have a negative pre-arrival test and also self-quarantine for 14 days.

The United States and Canada land border crossing remains closed through at least September 21, 2021.


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

Current EU laws do not permit a Schengen-wide travel ban for Americans and other “high risk” nations. However, the EU does recommend that each member nation require unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travelers to self-quarantine even with negative pre-arrival test results.

Before this guidance change, several popular spots were already requiring vaccination proof to enter restriction-free. But now, more nations have this policy that makes it harder for unvaccinated travelers to waive the mandatory quarantine.

Here are the entry requirement changes for several popular European holiday spots.


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


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

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


France has one of the most advanced rollouts of the vaccine passport that several countries (and the European Union) 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 transit.

The French entry requirements don’t require a quarantine for fully vaccinated travelers or unvaccinated travelers with a negative test result. If you visit France and are not fully vaccinated, you will need a new negative diagnostic test every 72 hours to enter most public places.


Spain still has relatively lax entry requirements for Americans. It’s possible to enter quarantine-free with complete vaccination, proof of recent recovery, or a negative pre-arrival test.

Latin America And The Caribbean

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

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

Some of the countries with the most lenient 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.

Turks And Caicos

Starting September 1, 2021, visitors aged 16 or older must be fully vaccinated, have a negative pre-arrival test, and qualifying travel insurance.

Cayman Islands

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

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

If this first step is successful, fully vaccinated guests will no longer need to self-quarantine beginning October 14, 2021 (Phase 4). 

Phase 5 tentatively starts on November 18, 2021, and unvaccinated children age 11 or under can accompany fully vaccinated adults. All travelers can enter quarantine-free. No unvaccinated adults can come to the island in 2021. The Cayman Islands government states they will evaluate the entry requirements for unvaccinated tourists in January 2022. 


Jamaica doesn’t require proof of vaccination. However, visitors must complete a travel authorization form to verify they are coming from an acceptable country.

If so, visitors ages 12 or up must have a negative pre-arrival test or a qualifying antigen test.

The United States currently doesn’t have a travel ban from Jamaica. However, several other nations are subject to a travel ban through 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. Either country only requires a negative pre-arrival test. Tourists may also have to stay at approved resorts for the entire stay.


More destinations are requiring full vaccination and a negative pre-arrival test to waive the entry requirements. The Caribbean, select Latin American countries and the United States destinations have minor restrictions, but it pays to be cautious whether you travel far away or stay local. 

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