By now, we’re used to heightened restrictions on air travel, especially when it comes to international trips. The truly frustrating part is that those rules are constantly changing, so it’s necessary to stay abreast of the newest developments.

On January 12, 2021, the CDC issued new guidelines for all air travelers entering the United States. Starting on January 26, all air passengers will be required to show the results of their negative for COVID-19 test (whether PCR or antigen) taken no more than 72 hours before departure.

In a press release, CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, MD, said “Testing does not eliminate all risk, but when combined with a period of staying at home and everyday precautions like wearing masks and social distancing, it can make travel safer, healthier, and more responsible by reducing spread on planes, in airports, and at destinations.”

The CDC also recommends to get tested again three to five days after arrival, and stay home for seven days post-travel.

Airlines will be required to check passengers’ results before boarding. If a passenger cannot produce test results (paper and electronic copies are accepted), the airline must deny them boarding.