United States Ending Africa Omicron Travel Ban

United States Ending Africa Omicron Travel Ban

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The United States will be lifting its Africa travel restrictions shortly…

Africa travel ban being reversed after weeks

Back in early November the United States finally lifted the poorly executed country-specific travel bans that were put in place at the start of the pandemic. Those were replaced by a requirement for visitors to be vaccinated, which made a lot more sense.

Unfortunately that didn’t last long, since in late November the United States put a new Africa travel ban in place against eight countries, intended to curb the spread of the omicron coronavirus variant. These new rules kicked in as of November 29, 2021, for travelers from Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.

With this travel ban, non-Americans who had been in any of those countries in the past 14 days could no longer enter the United States, regardless of vaccination status or testing.

Fortunately this policy will be changing shortly. As of December 31, 2021, the Biden administration will be lifting these travel restrictions, going back to the standard vaccination requirement for visitors. As White House Assistant Press Secretary Kevin Munoz describes this, “the restrictions gave us time to understand Omicron and we know our existing vaccines work against Omicron, especially boosted.”

The Africa travel ban is coming to an end

At least these restrictions didn’t last long

I’m happy to at least see that this travel ban only lasted for a bit over a month, as it didn’t make much sense to begin with. I think we’ve seen time and again that these kinds of travel bans don’t accomplish much. In the case of this ban:

  • The ban was announced three days before it went into effect, causing many people to push forward their travels to the United States, and probably leading to more cases being “imported” on short notice
  • The variant was already in the United States, but unlike South Africa, the US doesn’t do a great job with with analyzing tests to see what strain they are
  • We saw over 265K new coronavirus cases yesterday, and with a vast majority of cases being from the omicron variant, I think it’s safe to say that this travel ban didn’t manage to keep the variant out of our borders 😉
Can we stop with these country-specific travel bans now, please?

Bottom line

The United States will be ending its travel ban against eight African countries as of December 31, 2021. This was first put into place in late November over omicron variant concerns, though I think it’s safe to say it didn’t accomplish a whole lot. Here’s to hoping that this is the end of poorly executed country-based travel bans on the part of the United States.

What do you make of the United States lifting its Africa travel ban?

Conversations (12)
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  1. LVairbnbhost Guest

    Gahh you all sound so stupid w the never-ending politics-centric comments. Nobody is being convinced of anything here, yet post after post it's all Fauci this, and Biden that. What's the point?

    1. HaggisBuff Guest

      That they are both incompetent?

  2. Eskimo Guest

    Fauci probably thinks it's best to lie for the greater good again. Like when masks wasn't necessary so front lines can have access to them.

    So maybe, since we can't get you vaxx, let's get you infected with the less lethal omicron.

  3. D3kingg Guest

    Omicron will be gone in the US by next week . Very weak strain of Covid. Merry Christmas Brandon. Let’s go Hillary ?

    1. Ben L. Guest

      The Brandon thing continues to be the funniest little tantrum I've ever seen

    2. UA-NYC Diamond

      The fools worship a false idol

  4. David Guest

    I'm glad Biden ended his racist policy.

    1. Dan Guest

      How was it racist? I’d assume by that logic, Trump’s policies were also racist and phobic?

    2. David Guest

      My sarcasm was wasted on you. Of course Biden's policy wasn't racist. And neither was Trump's when Biden accused him of being racist and xenophobic when he banned travel from China during the beginning of the pandemic.

    3. Alex Guest

      Biden didn’t actual say Trumps China travel ban was racist: https://www.cnn.com/factsfirst/politics/factcheck_8df18b2a-26ab-4d33-ba13-2c4a4e45b23c

    4. Eskimo Guest

      LOL fact check by CNN!!!!!
      No different than fact check by FOX.

      Both of them these days are no more than clickbait tabloids.

      Trump and Biden are politicians, they will deny everything. Officially no politicians are racists, you just misquote them out of context.

  5. East2West Member

    From what it looks like travel bans take time to go into effect perhaps since maybe all the old federal systems needing to update their systems? Just speculating.

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Alex Guest

Biden didn’t actual say Trumps China travel ban was racist: https://www.cnn.com/factsfirst/politics/factcheck_8df18b2a-26ab-4d33-ba13-2c4a4e45b23c

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Ben L. Guest

The Brandon thing continues to be the funniest little tantrum I've ever seen

1
D3kingg Guest

Omicron will be gone in the US by next week . Very weak strain of Covid. Merry Christmas Brandon. Let’s go Hillary ?

1
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United States Adds New Africa Travel Ban