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Traveling this summer? CDC recommends everyone test for COVID-19 in days before flying

Julia Marnin, McClatchy Washington Bureau on

Published in News & Features

Most of the country, 81%, is in an area with a low COVID-19 community level as of May 17, according to the CDC. Meanwhile, roughly 14% live in an area with medium COVID-19 community levels, and about 4% live where the levels are considered high.

“If traveling to an area with high or medium COVID-19 Community Levels, and you are, live with, or are visiting someone with a weakened immune system or at increased risk for severe disease, plan to take steps to prevent getting sick,” the CDC advises.

The majority of the Northeast is considered a medium or high region as of May 17, according to the map.

Additionally, the CDC is reminding domestic travelers that “state, tribal, local, and territorial governments may have travel restrictions in place.” More information on this can be found here.

Before returning home after traveling within the U.S., the CDC advises to get tested “if your trip involved situations with greater risk of exposure” to COVID-19.

U.S. residents traveling internationally

For people flying outside of the U.S., COVID-19 requirements can differ by country, and the CDC recommends becoming familiar with your destination’s rules.


“Countries may have their own entry and exit requirements,” the agency said on its international travel website.

The CDC says to check an international destination’s COVID-19 levels before flying.

When returning to the U.S., travelers 2 years and older are required to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test or “documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 90 days,” according to the agency.

The COVID-19 test must be completed “no more than 1 day before travel.”

For international travelers not considered up-to-date on vaccines, the CDC recommends quarantining for five days after getting home.


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