After being off-limits for more than a year, the European Union is set to open its borders to American travelers who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 this summer, the New York Times reported Sunday.
“The Americans, as far as I can see, use European Medicines Agency-approved vaccines,” European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen told the Times in an interview. “This will enable free movement and the travel to the European Union.
“Because one thing is clear: All 27 member states will accept, unconditionally, all those who are vaccinated with vaccines that are approved by EMA,” she said. The EMA, the EU’s medical regulatory agency, has already approved all three vaccines that are being used in the U.S. — Pfizer PFE, +0.05%, Moderna MRNA, +3.29% and Johnson & Johnson JNJ, +0.21%.
Von der Leyen did not offer a timeline as to when American tourists will be allowed, but said the European Commission will likely recommend a change in policy restoring travel. She noted that the vaccine rollout in the U.S. was making “huge progress” and said the resumption of travel would ultimately depend on the situations in the U.S. and Europe.
The Times reported there are ongoing discussions between U.S. and EU officials on how to recognize fully vaccinated travelers, whether with a so-called vaccine passport or a certification of some sort.