Airline passengers entering the U.S. from China will need to show a negative Covid test, a federal health official announced on late Wednesday, amid growing concerns that widespread transmission of the virus in China could result in new variants.
The rule takes effect on January 5 and applies to all Chinese, Hong Kong, and Macau residents over the age of two. The rule applies regardless of nationality or vaccination status.
Covid-19 testing must be completed no later than two days prior to departure for all travelers 2 years of age and older flying to the United States, and passengers must present a negative result to the airline staff at check-in.
Airline travelers departing from Incheon International Airport in South Korea, Toronto Pearson International Airport in Canada, and Vancouver Airport in Canada will also be required to test negative for Covid before entering the U.S. if they were in China within the previous 10 days.
China has been adopting a zero Covid policy for a lot longer than other major countries, and the country is now facing a wave of infections after relaxing public health restrictions in recent weeks.