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Local News

As vaccination rates rise and the world’s countries reopen, international wanderlust resumes

Credit: iStock

Reinette LeJeune

With COVID-19 vaccination rates on the rise, many Americans are now refocusing their sights on the travel plans that eluded them for the past two years of the pandemic. While the overall outlook for globetrotters seems to be more and more positive, especially for those planning summer or later travels, caution and careful planning is still recommended by the CDC.

According to a recently released survey taken by the U.S. Census Bureau from March 30th to April 11th, only about 19 million of the 252.5 million surveyed reported minimizing their travel plans due to coronavirus up to seven days prior to the survey. Likewise, an equal number of people reported taking the same amount (or more) of trips. The highest rates of those both traveling despite the pandemic, and those curbing their wanderlust are both within the 25-54 age range. Of course, this survey does not take into account any difficulties or exclusions from travel as imposed by COVID variants, and/or foreign travel agents and officials. 

During the pandemic in 2021, Pennsylvania held a rare position as a convenient destination for many Northern Americans, who felt more comfortable with driving rather than being confined with others on airplanes. Now, in 2022, with the state open once more and many Americans in need of breaks from the stresses of the last two years, the state is once again being eyed by many as both an affordable and safer option for domestic travel. Many Pennsylvanians are equally eager to both explore their home state and venture once again beyond its borders. 

Most of the world’s countries are once again open to American travelers, with those who closed entirely to foreign visitors – like Israel, Morocco, Australia, and New Zealand – now dropping their bans or having announced plans to do so in the near future. Many European and Asian countries have also begun welcoming foreign travelers back, but while they may be easing restrictions, many still require tourists to meet vaccination and testing requirements. 

The CDC recommends full vaccination status before traveling internationally, for adults as well as children ages 5 and up before any family trips.