In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Iran, the Trump Administration issued a Presidential Proclamation on February 29, 2020 suspending entry into the United States of all foreign nationals who have been physically present within the Islamic Republic of Iran during the 14-day period preceding their entry or attempted entry to the United States. Similar to the temporary travel ban for foreign nationals who have visited China, this travel restriction does not apply to lawful permanent residents, U.S. citizens and their immediate family members, and certain exempted individuals. The temporary travel ban went into effect on March 2, 2020 at 5:00pm EST. All U.S.-bound flights from Iran will be routed to designated U.S. airports for health screenings.
As of today, the Trump Administration has not placed a travel ban for Italy or South Korea where recent outbreaks of COVID-19 have occurred. However, the U.S. Department of State (“DOS”) has issued a Level 4 Do Not Travel advisory for the Lombardy and Veneto regions and a Level 3 Travel Advisory to reconsider travel to other parts of Italy due to the outbreak. The Government of Italy has implemented enhanced screening and quarantine measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
As of 12:00 AM March 3, all passengers on U.S.-bound flights whose temperature is higher than 99.5 degrees Fahrenheit are not being permitted to board. Furthermore, due to reduced staffing levels in the consular section, the U.S. Consulate General in Milan announced on March 6th that it has suspended routine visa services and impacted visa applicants will be notified via e-mail if their visa appointment was cancelled. The U.S. Consulate General will otherwise propose alternative appointment dates once they return to normal operations. Alternatively, individuals may request for an expedited appointment at the U.S. Embassy in Rome or the U.S. Consulates General in Florence or Naples.
For South Korea, the DOS issued a Level 3 Reconsider Travel advisory for the Republic of Korea (ROK) and a Level 4 Do Not Travel for Daegu specifically. As of 12:00 a.m. on March 3 the ROK began temperature screening all passengers on direct flights from the ROK to the United States. In addition, the Korean Ministry of Justice has published emergency measures to counter the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak. Travelers with passports and Korean visas issued in Hubei Province, China will be cancelled, and all foreign nationals who visited Hubei Province, China in the past 14 days will be restricted entry. In addition, Visa-free entry to Jeju Island is temporarily suspended to all foreign nationals, and visa-free entry to Chinese nationals and foreign nationals who are traveling from China will be suspended.
As travel restrictions are changing rapidly in response to the global coronavirus outbreak, we recommend our clients to contact our office before traveling internationally.