Summer is almost here, and many Americans are considering travel abroad for the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 – and there is a lot to consider.
As COVID-19 vaccination rates rise and more countries reopen their borders, customers are eager to reconnect with some of their favorite destinations in Europe – from London to Paris to Amsterdam. And while the U.K. has strict quarantine requirements in place and many European destinations are currently restricted to only essential travelers, conditions are evolving.
The U.K. government last week unveiled a new system for entry – classifying countries by risk and assigning a green, amber and red rating, which outlines associated restrictions for entry into England. For travelers from countries that are on the ‘green list,’ the UK will allow them entry into the U.K. without quarantine restrictions beginning May 17. Such travelers will still need to meet negative pre-departure and post-arrival test requirements.
The U.S. currently remains on the U.K.’s amber list, meaning Americans headed to England will still need to meet negative COVID-19 test requirements and self-isolate for up to 10 days upon arrival.* The U.K. government will continue to review countries on the green, amber and red lists every three weeks, so check back to see how your travel plans are affected.
The European Union is also evaluating the best way to reopen its borders and is keeping a close eye on vaccination rates in the U.S. to determine how to welcome back travelers from the States. While a timeline for a full-scale reopening remains unclear, there is reason for excitement. Several European destinations are opening to non-essential travelers without strict quarantine requirements – and there are indications that more will follow in the coming weeks and months. Right now, you can book your Delta flight to Italy, Croatia, Iceland and Greece from multiple gateways across the U.S.
Here are a few things to keep in mind as you plan your European escape:
1. Stay up to date on restrictions in place at your destination. Customers headed across the pond this summer can find additional information about testing resources on Delta’s Travel Planning Center. If you are still weighing your options, check out the Delta Discover Map for real-time pricing, travel requirement information and sort by destination type for some added inspiration.
2. Know that Delta has your back as conditions evolve. Delta is making sure you have the resources and support needed to adjust your plans with ease. Whether you are booking a few weeks or months in advance, book with confidence knowing you have built-in flexibility to make your trip a success. Delta eliminated change fees for purchased premium and Main Cabin tickets when flying from North America to anywhere in the world (including flights operated by joint venture and codeshare partners).
Additionally, Delta issued a travel credit extension that allows for unmatched flexibility: all tickets expiring in 2021 and all tickets purchased in 2021 will now expire Dec. 31, 2022.
3. Delta and its European partner airlines are building a more integrated, guesswork-free experience. Whether you are traveling on Delta, Air France, KLM or Virgin Atlantic, you can expect the same commitment to offering you a seamless, and often touchless, experience. Together, the airlines are eliminating pain points for customers and employees to restore international travel to an experience closer to pre-COVID travel – from best practices on health and safety measures to an integrated digital experience consistent from booking to destination. We are reducing paperwork along your way as well, with a new digital health attestation form and voluntary contact tracing information for international arrivals into the U.S., available at check-in. And there is more to come. Stay tuned for more information on ways Delta and its partners aim to welcome customers back in a seamless way without the guesswork.
*Customers can apply for early release from quarantine or additional testing upon arrival. Learn more about the ‘Test to ‘Release’ scheme online.