After more than a year of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released an official statement many of us have been longing to hear: vaccinated people can safely engage in many activities.
St Vincent and the Grenadines are among many Caribbean destinations—including Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Dominica—will permit U.S. travellers with a negative result from a lab-issued COVID-19 PCR test that’s no more than 72 hours old upon arrival.
The Dominican Republic no longer requires U.S. visitors to show a negative COVID-19 PCR test result on arrival.
Last Friday, some 1.357 million people passed through U.S. airports, according to the Transportation Security Administration. It was the highest single-day tally since the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic in March 2020.
Travel will become safer for those who have been inoculated and have built up COVID-19 antibodies. “As a vaccinated traveler, you are almost 100 percent protected from severe disease if exposed to SARS-CoV-2,” says Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease doctor and professor of medicine at the University of California San Francisco.
Early studies show that vaccines are preventing viral transmission too, meaning vaccinated people are unlikely to spread COVID-19. But until that’s confirmed—results of several clinical trials are expected by fall—you’ll need to maintain the usual virus-transmitting precautions.
Vaccine passports are in the works for citizens of countries including Iceland, Poland, and Portugal, as are electronic travel passes from organizations like the World Economic Forum and the International Air Transport Assocition.
The CDC hasn’t yet implemented such a program, which could be riddled with practical and ethical issues.
A certification indicating you are vaccinated would be easy to forge and creating a group of vaccinated people who can travel while others can’t seem elitist.