Eager travellers line up for U.S. flights as COVID travel curbs are lifted
Travellers excited at the prospect of reuniting with family and friends headed for the United States on Monday November 8th as it lifted travel restrictions slapped on much of the world since the COVID-19 pandemic began
The travel ban, first imposed in early 2020, had barred access to non-U.S. citizens travelling from 33 countries - including China, India and much of Europe - and had also restricted overland entry from Mexico and Canada.
The United States lagged many other countries in lifting the curbs, made possible by the rollout of vaccines despite rising infections in many countries, and critical to reviving tourism around the globe.
Months of pent-up demand triggered a major spike in bookings on Monday, with travellers only required to show official proof of vaccination and a recent, negative viral test.
The United States was preparing for long lines and delays on Monday, with United Airlines alone expecting about 50% more total international inbound passengers compared to last Monday when it had about 20,000.