U.S. braces for international travel surge

With COVID-19 travel restrictions to the U.S. lifted for much of the world Monday, airlines and officials are bracing for an influx of international visitors.

United Airlines is expecting about 50% more international inbound passengers Monday than the 20,000 it had a week ago….

And Delta Air Lines has warned travelers to prepare for long lines.

Delta said in the six weeks since the U.S reopening was announced, it has seen a 450% increase in international bookings from the previous six weeks.

The Biden administration has held multiple calls with U.S. airlines to prepare for the influx of travelers, and has warned travelers crossing from Canada and Mexico by land or ferry to be prepared for longer waits starting Monday.

The rules had barred most non-U.S. citizens from entering from 33 countries.

Airlines will check vaccination documents for international travelers, and new rules will require airlines to collect passenger information for potential contact tracing.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection will ask if travelers have been vaccinated and spot check some documentation at land borders.

Children under 18 are exempt from the new vaccine requirements. All international travelers must provide a negative COVID-19 test.

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