Basilico Studio Stock/Shutterstock

International Travelers Can Now Take a COVID-19 Test at Home Before Flying to the US

by Olivia Harden May 10, 2021

On January 26, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) declared that all international travelers wishing to board a flight to the US must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken at least three days before boarding.

Until recently, travelers had to get tested at a testing site in the country where they were located and wait for the results. Now travelers have another option — testing themselves. Home tests for COVID-19 can be a good option for those visiting countries where finding a testing facility that can turn around results within one to three days may be more difficult, a concern addressed on the CDC website.

A home test does entail stipulations. The test can be either a nucleic-acid amplification test (NAAT) or an antigen test, as long as it’s for SARS-CoV-2 with “Emergency Use Authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).” Tests must be supervised by a telehealth service provider involved in the testing kit, which could require a prescription. The provider will then identify who is using the test, walk the traveler through the procedure, confirm the results, and then issue a report indicating the same information as any other test would have done.

Airlines cannot accept vaccination records in place of a negative test result. Passengers who have had COVID-19 within the last three months are exempt from providing a negative test result and instead must supply documentation of positive test results and a letter from a health provider or official that they’re cleared for travel.

Discover Matador

Save Bookmark

We use cookies for analytics tracking and advertising from our partners.

For more information read our privacy policy.