State Department lifts highest travel warning, advises travelers to 'exercise caution'
The State Department on Thursday lifted its highest level travel warning for U.S. citizens traveling internationally amid the COVID-19 pandemic but advised Americans to “exercise caution” when heading abroad.
The department issued the “Level 4: Do Not Travel” warning back in March that has been used by the department sparingly in recent years to advise against traveling to war zones, or nations experiencing disease or financial crises. It cautioned U.S. citizens to avoid “all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19.”
“With health and safety conditions improving in some countries and potentially deteriorating in others, the Department is returning to our previous system of country-specific levels of travel advice,” the department said in a statement.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has published a running list of the risk assessment of countries that have seen COVID-19 infections. According to the Johns Hopkins University tracker, 188 countries have reported cases.
A host of nations are beginning to reopen to tourists in an effort to boost their economies that have been ravaged by the pandemic. But most of the world has shut its borders to American travelers as the U.S. remains the country with the highest number of COVID-19 cases.
It has been just over one month since the European Union banned U.S. travelers, and American tourists have also been barred from entering China, the United Kingdom, Brazil and Iran.