New travel restrictions take effect: What you must do if traveling internationally

New travel restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19 and its new variants take effect on Tuesday, January 26th.

President Joe Biden announced that the United States is once again temporarily closing its borders to non-U.S. citizens from more than two dozen European countries, Brazil, and South Africa. 

Anyone boarding international flights to the United States must present either a negative coronavirus test result or proof of recovery from the virus within three days accompanied by a letter from a healthcare provider or public health official stating you are clear to travel.

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"With the pandemic worsening and more contagious variants spreading, this isn't the time to be lifting restrictions on international travel. And in light of the contagious variant B-1351, South Africa has been added to the restricted list," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said.

The CDC said that you must also get tested three to five days after traveling and stay home to self-quarantine for seven days. Even if you test negative, you still must stay home to self-quarantine for the full seven days. And if you do not get tested, they advised that people stay home for ten days after travel to self-quarantine.

The CDC clarified that this only applies to air travel into the United States and not border crossings by land.

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They also said that if you have had the COVID-19 vaccine or test positive for antibodies, you will still need a negative COVID-19 test or documentation of recovery. If passengers fail to show this proof, all airlines -- including private and charter flights -- are required to deny boarding.

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