Travelers wearing protective face masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) reclaim their luggage at the airport in Denver, Colorado, U.S., November 24, 2020. REUTERS/Kevin Mohatt
WASHINGTON, Feb 14 (Reuters) – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday advised against travel to six countries and territories including South Korea, Azerbaijan and Belarus due to widespread COVID-19.
The CDC also added Comoros, French Polynesia, and Saint Pierre and Miquelon to its risk list of "Level Four: Very High."
The U.S. State Department also raised its travel advisory rating on Monday for South Korea, Indonesia and Azerbaijan to "Level 4: Do Not Travel."
In total, CDC lists about 140 countries and territories at the highest warning level, including Canada, all of Europe and almost all of Latin America, with COVID levels due to the Omicron variant declining but still high in many countries.
The CDC lists 50 countries or territories as "Level Three: High," discouraging non-essential travel by unvaccinated Americans. Just 11 destinations – including China, New Zealand, Pakistan, Taiwan and Hong Kong – are listed at Level 1: Low or Level 2: Moderate.
The CDC lists about another 40 destinations as unknown and advises not traveling to those unless vaccinated.
Some industry officials have said they believe the CDC travel recommendations are a factor in the depressed international air travel demand.
Earlier this month, major airlines, business and travel groups urged the White House to end COVID-19 pre-departure testing requirements for vaccinated international passengers traveling to the United States.
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