President Biden creates new COVID testing rules, extended mask mandates for travelers
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - The spread of the omicron variant is now impacting travel.
President Joe Biden announced Thursday changes that will affect those who travel abroad, and all travelers will need to get ready to wear masks a little longer - regardless of the mode of public transportation. Those who are planning a trip outside of the country will need to have a negative COVID test result within 24 hours of returning to the United States.
America is on the defense, working to win the battle against the latest variant of COVID-19 that is now extending its reach after it was found in several states.
“Literally every hour, every day, we get more and more information. So, we really need to reserve judgment as to what the impact will be in the United States,” Dr. Anthony Fauci said.
Michael McTavish flew into Richmond’s airport on the same day the president announced the testing requirement.
“Yeah, makes perfect sense…The virus originated from a foreign country, so in order to regain entry, you should test negative,” McTavish said.
“I don’t think we should be denied entry into our own country,” traveler Macy Mohr countered.
Although it is not required, the CDC is saying if you travel abroad, you should be fully vaccinated. Additionally, the mask requirement at public transportation locations was supposed to expire in January. President Joe Biden is extending the mask mandate through mid-March.
“That’s annoying,” Mohr said while laughing.
“I think it should be a choice,” McTavish agreed.
New measures are taking place as we enter the third year of a pandemic.
“I don’t fight it. I travel. I have things I need to do, so I just follow whatever rules I have to follow, so I can do what I need to do,” traveler Ed Jones said.
The negative COVID test requirement takes effect Monday.
Copyright 2021 WWBT. All rights reserved.
Want NBC12’s top stories in your inbox each morning? Subscribe here.