COVID-19 Testing for United States Travel

A group of people at the airport for travel

COVID-19 has majorly impacted international travel. With restrictions projected to ease over the next couple of months, travel plans might be back on the table for you and your family. It will now be far easier to see relatives in different parts of the world, go on business trips, or visit different beautiful places. What better way to celebrate than to visit our neighbours South of the Border? 

Travelling safely is essential, even as the restrictions ease, and we know how much stress current times can add to your travel plans. Therefore, we have prepared a checklist for our Canadian travellers visiting the U.S. 

1. Check Travel Restrictions

A great place to start is the IATA website. The US currently requires a negative COVID-19 viral test (Antigen testing or RT-PCR/NAAT Testing) within 1 to 3 days before your trip and then gives the choice between a second viral test or a 10-day quarantine. If you choose to take a second test, a negative result shortens your quarantine to 7 days.  

Entry requirements are different for those who are fully vaccinated. As this group is not at an increased risk, they are not required to get a negative COVID result. They are requested to follow state guidelines and self-monitor.  

It is important to note that currently, the US has restrictions against travelers who have stayed in or transited through specific ‘high risk’ countries.  

2. Book Your 12/24-hour turnaround RT-PCR/NAAT or Antigen test  

If you are not fully vaccinated, you will be needing proof of a negative COVID-19 test upon entry. FastTest offers guaranteed 12 or 24–hour turnaround times for RT-PCR/NAAT tests as well as Antigen testing, feel free to check more of what we offer on our website to find what fits best for your testing requirements. In the case that we find you are testing positive for COVID-19, we inform you and the local CDC, requesting you to self-isolate immediately.  

3. Travel Prepared

The airport during a pandemic can bring about a lot of warranted anxiety. Here are a set of items that you can bring to make your flight experience a little safer. A necessary item is personal protective equipment (PPE), including a mask and gloves. Airplane regulation allows you to bring 350 ml (12 ounces) of hand-sanitizer in your carry-on luggage, which is also crucial for your travel. In addition, disinfectant wipes, tissues, and a thermometer are good supplies to have with you. Please look into the specific carry-on limitations of the airline you are travelling with.   

Ensure you are keeping a healthy distance of 2 meters (6 feet) away from others. Avoid contact with frequently touched surfaces and clean your hands often. Try to not actively touch your eyes, nose, and mouth often.   

Even if you are fully vaccinated, the United States government suggests that you continue wearing your mask on planes, buses, trains, and other types of public transportation.  

4. Check Restrictions Upon Arrival

If you are not fully vaccinated, you are required to quarantine up to 10 days. During your self-quarantine, check for any flu-like symptoms and have a plan ready in the case that you exhibit any. You may get a viral test upon arriving in the United States, which, if negative, reduces your self-quarantine to 7 days. Upon a positive test, you are required to isolate yourself to prevent infecting others.  

 If you are fully vaccinated, upon arrival, you are required to self monitor for COVID-19. In the chance that you experience any symptoms, the CDC guides you to self-isolate, and get tested. Additionally, you should follow state and local guidelines, recommendations, or requirements.  

We hope this article helps make your next time travelling easier. Despite the loosening of restrictions, we would like to note that flights should still only be taken if essential. FastTest suggests you delay travel until you are fully vaccinated, for the safety of everyone including yourself. You can read more on Canada’s travel health notices on their website. We are glad to be a part of reconnecting you with your loved ones in different parts of the globe.   


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