The EU is preparing to lift its external travel ban in July but not everyone is invited ©Shutterstock

EU set to lift travel ban on 14 countries but US not included yet

Maintrip June 29, 2020

Last Update: 2020-07-01 02:45:34

Travelers from the US are unlikely to be allowed to enter the European Union anytime soon as member states prepare to lift the external travel ban on July 1.

EU officials have drawn up a list of 14 countries whose citizens will be allowed to travel to the bloc again. The list includes Canada, Australia and potentially China but excludes the US, Brazil and Russia. A final decision on the list is yet to be reached but it's likely that tourism restrictions on the US will remain in place for now.

Speaking to CNN, an EU diplomat said that it was very "unlikely" travelers from the US would be allowed to visit Europe for non-essential travel, saying that "the US's chances are close to zero."

The EU has had a broad travel ban in place since mid-March on countries. But since June travel restrictions have begun to ease in places where the coronavirus situation has improved as member states gradually opened their borders to each other ahead of the summer tourism season.

European travel may be off the cards for US tourists this year ┬ętheendup/Shutterstock
European travel may be off the cards for US tourists this year ©theendup/Shutterstoc.

Now officials are preparing to lift travel bans on countries with similar levels of infection as EU countries, and where infection rates are low from July 1. Australia, New Zealand, Canada, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Georgia, Morocco, Tunisia, Uruguay, Serbia, Rwanda, Algeria and Montenegro are all on the list of approved countries, according to the New York Times. The list will be monitored and reviewed every two weeks.

China will be considered too if it lifts its reciprocal travel ban on EU countries. And while the UK has left the EU, its citizens are allowed to travel within the bloc as EU travelers during the Brexit transition period.

Ultimately the decision on who can visit their country is down to each member state. Some countries, such as Cyprus, are already allowing non-EU citizens to travel there. Recommendations are not mandatory and the 27 member states still have to formally agree on the criteria used to draw up the list of proposed "safe" countries.