American tourists who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will be allowed back into the European Union this summer.
Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, told the New York Times Sunday that a switch in policy to allow trans-Atlantic travel is around the corner.
“The Americans, as far as I can see, use European Medicines Agency-approved vaccines,” von der Leyer told the outlet. “This will enable free movement and the travel to the European Union.”
“Because one thing is clear: All 27 member states will accept, unconditionally, all those who are vaccinated with vaccines that are approved by EMA,” she said.
Until now, non-essential travel to Europe has been officially banned over the fear of the renewed spread of the global pandemic.
But some European nations, who rely on US tourist dollars, have pushed for the ban to be lifted and renewed air travel across the Atlantic.
The commission, the executive branch of the European Union, has been in negotiations for weeks to come up with a vaccination certificate that would be mutually acceptable to all nations involved.
The certificates would confirm that a traveler has been inoculated and is thus allowed to enter the EU, the Times said.
Van der Leyen has not given a timetable for when the restrictions could be lifted but said the commisison has approved all three vaccines administered in the US — Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson.
The union’s softening of the travel restrictions mark a stark turnaround from a year ago, when concern over the rampant spread of the deadly bug in the US raised concerns throughout the world.
However, America’s fast deployment of the vaccines has eased Europe’s concerns over non-essential US travel.
Van der Leyer cautioned that individual EU member states would still consider individual measures to safeguard against the spread of the virus.
Originally Appeared On: https://nypost.com/2021/04/25/vaccinated-us-tourists-to-be-allowed-into-europe-this-summer/