Pandemic Life: Country-level Travel Restrictions

Having taken so many precautions for the pandemic for so long, part of my brain has been eager to visit another country ever since my second vaccine dose kicked in, but before Delta made its special talents known. While in real life I have no plans to travel outside of California this year, my brain is still wandering.

Out of curiosity to see what the options (which I will not be availing myself of soon) are, I visited the CDC’s website.

So you’ll see what I’m looking at, I’ll paste in the map here:

A clear and useful illustration, but “not a pretty picture” in the metaphorical sense

Sure, we are a country with abundant vaccines, but we still manage to be in the worst possible tier, because: some Americans have… issues.

Even though we are in the worst tier, we remain fussy about who can visit us. So, contrary to the hopes a friend in Sweden recently expressed, or the plans of a new Irish pen friend to visit his sister here, or the absurdly optimistic entreaties of British Airways in their advertising communications to me about booking trips to Europe, here is our current list of banned nations:

The ENTIRE SCHENGEN ZONE is on the list!! This hits me because I used to have a job that required frequent travel between a team here (in California) and one spread between the UK and the Schengen area, and… that job would not be possible in pandemic times. I was lucky to have had such a unique job, and appreciate it all the more now that it is such an artifact of the Before Times.

I am all the more grateful in retrospect for the travel opportunities I had in the past.

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