US arrivals airport

Malta has been added to the United State’s ‘very high risk’ travel with a number of other countries, as the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stepped up efforts to arrest the rapid spread of the Delta variant.

All air passengers travelling to the US, including fully vaccinated people, will now be required to have a negative COVID test result or documentation of recovery from the virus before they board a flight into the country.

“Avoid travel to these destinations. If you must travel to these destinations make sure you are fully vaccinated before travel”, said the body, which aside from Malta added 15 countries to its red list.

For travellers in the other direction, US-issued COVID vaccination cards started being recognised in Malta in July, with the digital verification of such cards beginning on Sunday.

Those travelling without a vaccine certificate must quarantine for 14 days at a Government assigned hotel at their own expense.

The US ‘very high’ risk list indicates the highest possible risk of travel, and Malta is joined on it by a number of other countries where the Delta variant of COVID is particularly prevalent, including the United Kingdom and Portugal, although notably not India, where the variant is said to have originated, which is on the ‘high’ risk list.

The CDC also warns that “because of the current situation in Malta, even fully vaccinated travellers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants”.

The move comes as the international community has expressed concern about the spread of the virus in Malta.

Last month, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) also placed Malta on its red list, meaning travel to the island was not encouraged.

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