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CDC advises Americans not to travel, but won't require COVID tests for domestic flights yet

The CDC updated its travel guidance on Feb. 2.

If you haven't seen the latest federal COVID-19 guidance, the Centers for Disease Control announced at the start of February that is advising all Americans to "avoid travel."

While cases have been falling in the U.S. since the peak in mid-January, the levels of COVID are still at a higher rate than at any time nationally pre-November, and the country is now facing the prospect of dealing with more contagious COVID variants such as the one discovered in the U.K., which is expected to become increasingly dominant.

Since President Joe Biden took office, his administration has imposed new travel restrictions that require a negative COVID-19 test result before traveling from international countries to the U.S. – including U.S. citizens – or documentation proving recovery from COVID-19.

For now it's not requiring that negative tests be obtained before domestic travel, though hasn't ruled it out imposing such a requirement in the future.

The CDC stepped up its travel guidance on Feb. 2, announcing that it is recommending that all Americans avoid travel, asking them to delay their plans "and stay home to protect yourself and others from COVID-19."

That goes for the upcoming Spring Break, with the CDC advising that people put back their plans to 2022, although the Washington Post reports that travel experts expect an uptick in travel during the upcoming break because the vaccine is inspiring confidence, even though the rate of vaccination is nowhere near the level yet required to significantly reduce the risk of COVID's spread.

What's more, if you "must travel," the CDC recommends getting tested for COVID within 3-5 days of your return, and to stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel – even if the test is negative.

If you don't get tested, the CDC says you should self-quarantine for 10 days after travel. It also advises to avoid being around those at increased risk of severe illness for 14 days, whether tested or not.

You can see the CDC's travel guidance here.

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