Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, confirmed that Americans, who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, would be able to visit the European Union this summer.
While von der Leyen did not offer a timeline on when precisely tourist travel might open up, she said that the free movement and the travel to the EU would be possible as the US citizens use European Medicines Agency-approved vaccines.
EU to Open Up to Fully Vaccinated Americans
White House senior COVID-19 adviser Andy Slavitt told reporters that as only a few months ago the US was cut off from international travel, von der Leyen's statement affirms the success of the country's vaccination program.
"[The world is] looking at the success of our vaccination program, they're looking at the reduction of disease, and while they know we're not done yet, they're saying those Americans are safe to come to our country without risk of spreading Covid-19," Slavitt said. "That just shows what an incredible few months we've had vaccinating Americans."
Slavitt added that the opportunity to visit EU countries is one of the regained freedoms awaiting fully vaccinated Americans.
"I think you're going to see increasing steps over the next few weeks on what vaccinated Americans can do," he said.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 28% of Americans are now fully vaccinated, meaning that it has been at least one week after their Johnson & Johnson single-shot vaccine, or two weeks since their second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.