International travel at this time is challenging, but not insurmountable. However, if not vaccinated it is out of the question. Some web sites to review:
- The State Department web site https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/traveladvisories.html/ A wealth of information and easy to use.
- Another site used by my tour company, Gate 1, https://apply.joinsherpa.com/travel-restrictions?affiliateid=gateone. While I receive no compensation, have taken many flawless trips with this company.
For Italy the following was required:
- Mandatory proof of vaccination
- Mandatory passenger locator form (PLF)*
- Mandatory health pass for public activity- CDC Vaccination card accepted
- Proof of COVID-19 test results required for vaccinated travelers – test must be administered within 48 hours of departure
- Masks at all sites
Upon entry into Sicily there was a new regulation with a rapid screen required upon entry. This was free and available on airport grounds.
The proof of vaccination during this trip was more vital than passport. Ensure it is always with you.
*The PLF Form – Patient Locator Form
This Form needs completion prior to European travel. It is challenging to complete. Ensure you have your passport and all components of your travel itinerary before initiating this e form. Read instructions carefully and recommend having another set of eyes available during the completion. Carry copies of this form with you at all times and on your phone as well.
The purpose of this form is to facilitate contact tracing on exposed individuals. It is a vital public health document with cross boarder health threats.
Rapid Screen Testing
Rapid Screen Testing results are required and reviewed by airline staff during the check in process. These tests need completion 48 hours prior to flight. You will not be allowed on the plane should you not have this completed. Bring paper copies and download on your phone as well.
Shop around to obtain a fair price for this screening. At most airports this testing can be completed, Newark Airport cost $250. Unsure if all health insurances will pay for travel testing.
Cruise ships also requiring Rapid Screen Testing.
Carnival Cruise Line has strong guidelines: https://www.carnival.com/legal/covid-19-legal-notices. The following information regarding Rapid Screen Testing is copied from the Carnival web site:
Carnival has recommended using an Abbott BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card Home Test, which includes a viral antigen home test and the services of an eMed telemedicine professional who will supervise the administration of the home test.
The test provider must provide guests with an official test result; no handwritten report. Results are provided in approximately 15 minutes, and test kits are available to be shipped in 50 states. The home test (including two tests) costs $69.99 when it is purchased via the Optum Store.
No financial remuneration was received from Carnival. Sharing this information as in checking Florida sites have found this testing in the $170 range and at port side $150. The UK provides this testing for citizens free and congress is currently looking at this.
Without this paperwork you cannot check in. Plan ahead and have documentation readily available.