The White House has announced that the U.S. will lift travel restrictions on eight countries in Southern Africa.

Key Points:

  • On Nov. 29, the U.S. imposed a “physical presence” ban on travelers from Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.
  • The ban was implemented following the emergence of the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus.
  • A White House spokesman said last week that the U.S. will lift the restrictions on Dec. 31. The White House has not yet issued an official proclamation.
  • Inbound international air travelers remain subject to COVID-19 testing and vaccination requirements.

BAL Analysis: The White House is expected to issue a proclamation rescinding the restrictions in the coming days. The lifting of restrictions will ease travel from the countries covered by the ban; however, other COVID-19 travel restrictions and entry requirements remain in place and may change with little notice. Services at consulates abroad remain limited. Employers and employees should continue to consult their BAL professional before planning international travel.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact
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