Sunday marked an important milestone in America’s fight against COVID-19 as now more than half of U.S. adults have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
With the viability of travel becoming increasingly reliant on whether you have been vaccinated or are able to provide a negative COVID-19 test result, the big question is, what new travel opportunities are available to Americans this summer?
New International Travel Routes
Several US-based airlines have introduced new international travel routes as countries have started announcing their plans for tourists this summer.
Iceland was the first European country to announce its summer plans to enable fully vaccinated individuals to pass its borders. For those with the vaccine, the country has also lifted restrictions on testing and quarantine, enabling such visitors to travel more freely.
Subsequently Delta announced that they would deliver a new daily service from Boston to Reykjavik starting on May 20, whilst its flights from Minneapolis and New York to the Icelandic city also due to resume, with all three services offering a nonstop journey.
The airline is also hopeful that restriction-free travel will resume between the United States and the United Kingdom as part of a travel corridor.
Delta Air Lines President Glen Hauenstein said “Americans want to travel, and they want to travel abroad,”.
Speaking on the possibility of a travel corridor between the two countries, Delta’s CEO Ed Bastian said recently that “We’re making progress in that regard” as talks between the two countries are ongoing.
United Airlines are also offering several new travel routes to enable Americans to travel abroad whilst complying with relevant local COVID-19 travel restrictions.
New routes include:
Newark to Dubrovnik, Croatia. The airline announced flights between the two destinations will begin on July 8, running three times a week until the October 3. This follows the suspension of American Airlines flights between the U.S. and Croatia which launched in 2019 however was suspended indefinitely as a result of the pandemic.
Under current restrictions, Americans are unable to enter Croatia unless they qualify under a select number of categories alongside presentation of a negative PCR test or proof of full vaccination.
Washington Dulles to Athens, Greece. Flights between the two airports will run daily from July 1 for three months until October 1.
Greece announced on Monday that they had lifted quarantine restrictions for travellers from the U.S. as long as they are able to present a negative PCR test or hold a vaccination certificate.
Chicago to Reykjavik, Iceland. Following in Delta’s footsteps after the announcement by the Icelandic government, United will fly daily between Chicago and Iceland’s capital city from July 1 to October 3. The airline is also resuming daily flights from Newark to Reykjavik from June 3 to October 29.
New National Travel Routes
Taking advantage of a likely increase in the number of individuals opting for a staycation this year, American Airlines has added 150 new routes as well as improving its air service through flying all routes between Miami and JFK on Boeing 777 aircraft.
Several of its new routes are comprised of national links to locations which will provide Americans with an ability to travel to the great outdoors.
These routes include flights between Nashville and Raleigh-Durham daily from June 2 as well as weekly flights from Austin to Nassau in the Bahamas which will run between June 5 and August 14.
The airline will also have no competition on its new Saturday flights from Raleigh-Durham to Destin-Fort Walton Beach from June 5 to August 15, with the destination being one of Florida’s most popular beach destinations.
They are also adding eight new Saturday-only nonstop flights to Orlando (MCO) for visitors planning a trip to Walt Disney Resort. The flights will run from the following cities:
All flights from these cities to Orlando will run from June 5 to August 14.
As domestic travel begins to rebound and hope of international travel starts to turn into a real possibility this summer life is slowly looking like it is starting to return to ‘normal’.