The federal government is expected to require all international visitors to provide a negative COVID-19 test before being able to board a flight heading to the United States.
The rule would include all American citizens who were travelling abroad.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expected to have the rule implemented by January 26th, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Previously, tests were required only from those returning from the United Kingdom, over concerns of a highly infectious mutated strain of the coronavirus that has wreaked havoc there. The mutated strain has since been reported in the U.S., in New York and Colorado and several other states, but it is unclear how prevalent it is.
In a letter to Vice President Mike Pence, Airlines for America, a trade group, protested the restrictions and argued that “a well-planned program focused on increasing testing of travelers to the United States will further these objectives in a much more effective way than the blanket travel restrictions currently in place.”
Foreign nationals from the UK and China are currently banned from the United States, while Americans are barred from travelling to most European countries over concerns of America’s high infection rate.