US will reportedly keep travel restrictions in place as highly infectious Delta variant surges

Three people with suitcases spread apart in an airport behind yellow caution tape.
Travelers, some in protective gear, walk through John F. Kennedy Airport in New York in April 2020. Spencer Platt/Getty Images
  • Because of increasing COVID-19 cases, the US won’t lift its travel restrictions, an official told Reuters.
  • The White House official told Reuters that the spread of the Delta variant had driven that decision.
  • Cases are increasing in the US, especially among unvaccinated people, health officials say.
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Because of the spread of the highly transmissible Delta coronavirus variant and increasing COVID-19 cases, the US will not lift its travel restrictions, a White House official told Reuters on Monday.

“Given where we are today with the Delta variant, the United States will maintain existing travel restrictions at this point,” the unnamed official told the news outlet.

Coronavirus cases are increasing in every US state, especially among unvaccinated people, health officials say. The Delta variant, which was first identified in India, is rapidly spreading across the nation.

“Driven by the Delta variant, cases are rising here at home, particularly among those who are unvaccinated and appear likely continue to increase in the weeks ahead,” the official told Reuters.

Last week, the US State Department urged Americans not to travel to the United Kingdom because of a surge in coronavirus cases there.

The US bars most noncitizens who were in areas including China, Iran, Brazil, South Africa, India, the UK, Ireland, and the European Schengen Area in the previous 14 days.