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Travel News: New Push to Remove COVID Travel Restrictions, and a COVID Policy Update from the Netherlands`

In travel news for March 24, 2022 we talk about a recent push to end entry restrictions and the Air Travel Mask Mandate, and we have a covid policy update from the Netherlands.

We’ve previously covered the extension to the Mask Mandate for Air Travel, which was supposed to expire on March 18 but was extended till April 18 by the Transportation Security Administration.  Now travel groups have renewed their push for the White House to end, not only the mask mandate, but other COVID related policies.  This might sound familiar, these same groups previously sent a letter on February 2nd with similar requests.  The travel groups are pushing for the United States to move from a Pandemic response, to an endemic response.  Such a change would not only eliminate the mask requirement for air travel, but also end pre-departure testing for inbound fully vaccinated travelers, and do away with the Center for Disease Control and Preventions COVID Travel Advisories.

It’s not just travel groups that are pushing for changes to the federal transportation Mask Mandate, on March 15 the U.S. Senate voted 57 to 40 to eliminate the mandate.  However there is little chance the bill will pass the U.S. House of Representative.

While the U.S. is keeping the mask mandates and entry restrictions in place, the Netherlands has just announced they are dropping the pre-arrival testing requirement for fully vaccinated travelers.  The Netherlands defines full vaccination has having received the final dose, or booster shot within the previous 9 months.  The country has also eliminated their mask mandate on public transpiration, however masks are still required for Air Travel.  These recent changes bring the Netherlands more inline with other countries in the area such as Ireland, Iceland, the United Kingdom who dropped most, if not all of their covid entry restrictions.