We are getting a LOT of requests for post-pandemic travel tips right now. We get it. Believe me, we’re ready to get back on the road as well!
However, we are still in the midst of a global crisis, so if you take nothing else away from this post, take this: when it comes to global rules and restrictions, go straight to the source that makes said rules and restrictions.
Years ago (pre-WiFi and cell phones), I learned this lesson the hard way, by trusting a fresh-off-the-press, big-name guidebook with “up-to-date” information about entry visas. It didn’t matter that the book was two months old, the rules had since changed, and as a result, I was SOL abroad. Never again.
When it comes to big important things like border crossings, entry and exit requirements, vaccine requirements, and in-country issues and alerts, there are precisely TWO websites that travelers with U.S. passports can trust.
Websites to Trust for Post-Pandemic Travel Information
- The US Department of State – Bureau of Consular Affairs: travel.state.gov
- The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): cdc.com
- These websites offer the most up-to-date official travel information for U.S. passport holders. If your passport is from another country, refer to that country’s official travel website.
- Upon returning to the U.S. it will also be crucial to check with your specific airline for up-to-date Covid-19 testing and entry requirements (see below).
No matter how often your favorite blog or news outlet updates posts, they are only relaying information and telling their own stories. While there is a place and time for blogs and news outlets, it is not in having the official, most up-to-date and trustworthy word on the rules. And if we want to travel post-pandemic, we must play by the official rules.
Disclaimer: This post is meant to be a quick-access guide to the most important travel links and websites for U.S. passport holders. These are the sites to trust when navigating post-pandemic travel. That’s it. We are not Covid-19 experts, nor are we trying to be. But we do know where to find the most important information that every post-pandemic U.S. traveler will need. Allow us to share the websites that really matter for post-pandemic travel.
Important Links for Travel Post-Pandemic
Put these websites on speed dial when you start your travel planning:
- General Covid-19 Traveler Information – U.S. Department of State. Travel updates and advisories for U.S. passport holders.
- Vaccines Required for Travel (General by country) – CDC. Use this before, after, and during the pandemic (this does not pertain only to Covid) for country-specific vaccine requirements for travel. Without required vaccines, you may straight up (no ifs ands or buts) be denied entry to certain countries.
- Covid-Specific Information by Country – U.S. Department of State. Use this when planning your destination(s). Double, triple, quadruple check your destination requirements up to the moment you are getting on a plane and all throughout your trip. Regulations are changing rapidly these days, and this is the only way to truly stay up to date. You can find embassy information through these country links as well, should you need to contact authorities while you are abroad.
- Register with the State Department when you travel – U.S. Department of State. Enroll in STEP (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program) in order to receive alerts and be sure you can be located abroad in case of an emergency. (This is one of the reasons the State Department knew exactly which countries to evacuate U.S. passport holders from before all the borders closed at the breakout of Covid-19).
- Entry into the U.S. – U.S. Department of State. Use this when planning your return to the U.S. and check with your airline (see below).
Major U.S. Airlines Covid-19 Policies & Travel Advisories
For returning to // entering the U.S. – CHECK WITH YOUR AIRLINE for specific rules of Covid-19 testing/boarding from your destination abroad.
The Department of State says: “If you are planning to travel overseas or if you are currently overseas and planning to return to the U.S., you should contact your airline for specific information about testing requirements for travelers. Because airlines may adopt and modify their own specific policies to implement CDC’s new rule, you should contact the carrier for your U.S.-bound flight and not rely on information from other carriers or information or experience from previous trips.”
Here are some of the U.S.’s major airline Covid-19 polices and travel advisories websites:
Two Regularly-Updated Articles for U.S. Americans to Watch for Post-Pandemic Travel
Now that we know to always check the State Department and CDC for official rules and regulations and country-specific info for any post-pandemic travel, we can turn our eyes to our favorite blogs and news outlets to digest and translate some of that official information and present it to us in an inviting format.
The following are regularly-updated articles about where U.S. Americans can travel right now (round-up information you don’t get neatly packaged from the State Department or CDC). I have been following the first one since summer 2020 and find it accurate and insightful:
- Find out which countries are welcoming U.S. tourists back – CNN
- These destinations open to travelers vaccinated against Covid-19 – CNN
Just be sure to check the “last updated” dates on these articles and refer back to the official U.S. Department of State websites listed above to double/triple/quadruple check the latest official information.
It is our sincere hope that these links are helpful and educational for our readers planning future travel. Please do not ask us questions or opinions about Covid-19, as we are not experts in the virus. That said, if you have travel questions we CAN answer, feel free to put them in the comments and we’ll do our best to help you!
- How to Get US Passports, Travel Visas, and Immunizations
- What You Need to Know About Travel Insurance
- Listen: Ask Jackie Session 5: Airports, Vaccinations, and Proof of Onward Travel