- Additionally, voluntary departures for families of U.S. government employees working in India, also authorized.
The State Department is urging all Americans to leave India as the country grapples with a deadly second wave of coronavirus. “Access to all types of medical care is becoming severely limited in India due to the surge in Covid-19 cases,” reads the April 28 advisory. The travel advisory comes as India faces one of the worst waves of coronavirus infections the world has seen since the start of the pandemic last year. “U.S. citizens who wish to depart India should take advantage of available commercial transportation options now. Direct flights between India and the United States are offered daily, with additional flight options available to U.S. citizens via transfers in Paris and Frankfurt.”
Additionally, the State Department has authorized voluntary departures for the families of U.S. government employees working in India.
A State Department spokesperson told The Washington Post that the authorization for families was made out of “an abundance of caution” as well as “current conditions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic and diminishing commercial flight options.” The spokesperson also said the State Department is reviewing whether to authorize departures for staff at the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi and its consulates.
On April 22, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a level 4 travel health notice for India due to the surge in COVID-19 infections in the country. “Because of the current situation in India, even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk for getting and spreading COVID-19 variants and should avoid all travel to India,” the CDC stated.
And U.S citizens “who must travel to India are strongly urged to get fully vaccinated before travel and continue to take personal health safety measures to protect themselves, including practicing social or physical distancing, cleaning hands with soap/hand sanitizer, wearing masks, and avoiding crowded areas with poor ventilation.”
The CDC also recommends that U.S. citizens get flu shots to better protect themselves from a major flu outbreak and reduce the need to access the local health system at this time.
Earlier on April 20, the CDC issued travel recommendations for fully vaccinated travelers. “If you are fully vaccinated, then do not have to get tested before leaving the United States, unless your destination requires it and you do not have to self-quarantine after you arrive in the United States.”