The Biden administration is “actively looking” into mandating COVID-19 tests for travelers on domestic flights, a senior official said.
That could mean passengers will be required to test negative for the bug before flying within the country.
Dr. Marty Cetron, director for the Division of Global Migration and Quarantine at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was asked on a Tuesday call with reporters whether new domestic travel testing requirements might be imposed.
Cetron said there were “conversations that are ongoing and looking at what the types and locations of testing might be … We’re actively looking at it.”
He added, “We realize that there’s been a dramatic evolution and increase in both testing platforms and testing capacity. I think this is a really important part of our toolkit to combat this pandemic.”
Airlines fear a new test requirement for domestic flights would deal a blow to the industry already crippled by the drop in demand for air travel during the pandemic.
Last week, President Joe Biden signed an executive order directing US agencies to make recommendations to “impose additional public health measures for domestic travel” and to consider new rules for those crossing land borders. The same order mandated mask use in airports, on airplanes, trains, ferries, buses.
Also on Tuesday, a new rule went into place requiring international airline travelers aged 2 and up to produce a negative COVID test before entering the US.
Passengers at LAX in California wait in line to be tested for COVID-19 on December 31, 2021.Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
The CDC said Sunday that it wouldn’t grant waivers to exempt travelers from some countries with limited testing. Numerous US airlines had sought waivers.
With Post wires