The United States will allow vaccinated travelers from the UK and Europe from November, it announced on September 20, 2021.
The news was welcomed by UK Transport Minister Grant Shapps, who called it a “great outcome”, and by Stavros Lambrinidis, EU Ambassador to the US.
The announcement will be a relief for not only travelers, but will also for airlines that fly across the Atlantic, such as Air France-KLM, British Airways parent IAG, Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA), Delta and American Airlines (A1G) (AAL), among others.
A4E applauds the decision by @POTUS to allow vaccinated travellers from the EU and the UK to enter the U.S.
This decision will give a much-needed boost to trans-Atlantic traffic & #tourism and will reunite families and friends #LiftTheTravelBan https://t.co/JATM1hr8jm
— Airlines for Europe (A4E) (@A4Europe) September 20, 2021
The US easing of restrictions will likely boost leisure travel in time for the Thanksgiving holiday and also provide a lift for corporate travel, where many legacy airlines make more profit by selling higher-priced tickets.
The expected boost was reflected in airline share prices ahead of the announcement, with IAG up 9%, Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) up 5% and Air France-KLM up 6% after the Financial Times reported that the restrictions would be eased.
The ban on travel to the United States, which meant only those with US passports or holders of green cards could enter the country, has been in place for 18 months.
Europeans and Brits were left frustrated this summer after vaccinated US travelers were allowed across the Atlantic to visit for leisure, but the United States did not reciprocate. The EU on August 30, 2021, removed the US from its safe travel list, allowing member states to impose their own restrictions if they wished.