CDC to lift testing requirement, travel industry reacts
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A big change is coming for international travelers entering the United States with the CDC expected to roll back COVID testing requirements.
According to administration officials on Friday, June 10, the Biden Administration is expected to announce that the CDC will lift the requirement for travelers to get a negative COVID test before entering the U.S.
Those in the travel industry are nothing that this is very good news for the direction of their business.
"I expect that every travel advisor in the country today is jumping for joy that this is finally happening," said travel agent, Tanya Murphy.
The requirement is expected to be dropped effective Sunday at midnight.
It has been in effect since January 2021, and the ever-changing restrictions have changed the workload for the travel industry.
"It has been such a huge part of the job now for well over a year, to spend a lot of time making sure you knew exactly what your client needed to get into a country and then monitor it when your client left, because it could change any second," Murphy said.
Along with the new task of monitoring restrictions, Murphy also had clients who didn't feel comfortable leaving the country.
"With that test remaining, they just didn't want to chance it. They didn't want to take the risk of - however small it might be - testing positive and having to stay and having to quarantine," Murphy said.
Recent history shows less restrictions likely means more travel, and Milwaukee's General Mitchell international Airport is seeing an upswing in numbers this year.
"Our most recent monthly numbers are from April, and we were up about 36% from April of '21, so there is growth happening and a lot of that is leisure travel," said Harold Mester, the Director of Public Affairs at Mitchell Airport.
The CDC is expected to re-assess the decision in 90 days, depending on virus transmission.