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These Countries Are Still Ranked As High Travel Risk By the CDC

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Top destinations for American travelers such as Canada, Costa Rica, France, and the United Kingdom are on Level 3

A few weeks ago the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States changed its travel advisory levels. “Level 4 Special Circumstances/Do Not Travel”, which used to be the highest risk category is now restricted for extreme cases such as health care infrastructure collapse or if a new COVID-19 variant emerges. 

Level 3 is currently called “COVID-19 High” and it is the highest risk category, the destinations on this level are not recommended for travelers. A country is assigned to this level when there have been over 100 cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people over the last 28 days. At the moment there are 109 countries in this category, including the British Virgin Islands, a destination added last Monday. 

If travelers visit high-risk locations on level 3, they should have their vaccines up to date. CDC considers that those who visit destinations in this category are more likely to get sick from COVID-19, especially without vaccinations or with a weakened immune system. 

Travelers wearing face mask for prevent covid-19 infection during flight

Despite the ease of travel restrictions worldwide and new routes and services offered by airlines, some popular destinations for American travelers are of high risk. According to the CDC, these top destinations are still on Level 3:

  • Aruba
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Costa Rica
  • Cuba
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • The United Kingdom

Old wooden fishing boat in Cefalu, Sicily, Italy.

The United States is not included in this list but it is also in red color in the map provided by the CDC. 

Other Destinations On Level 3

Travelers should stay up to date with travel restrictions and the CDC recommendations. To see all countries included in the list of each category, they must visit the COVID-19 Travel Recommendations by Destination page. But here’s a good summary of the most visited locations. 

Woman looks at departures schedule in airport

Perhaps Europe is the continent with the most popular countries for travelers included in the list. The CDC considered these countries of high risk: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Norway, The Netherlands, Portugal, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

In the Caribbean, these islands have high levels of COVID-19 according to the information provided by the CDC: Aruba, Barbados, the British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Curaçao, and Dominica.

In North America, Canada and the United States are also marked as high risk. In Central America, Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Panama; and in the south, the CDC has warned about Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, and Uruguay. 

Australia and New Zealand were also flagged as dangerous and, according to the agency, adventurous travelers visiting attractive destinations in Asia should stay cautious before visiting Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Maldives, or Vietnam, also included on level 3.

CDC’s Recommendations

Even though many airlines removed the mask mandate and many countries removed covid–related travel restrictions, the CDC still urges travelers to wear masks during flights, stay up to date with covid vaccines —including boosters—, and consider the destination’s specific travel recommendations. 

At the moment, almost 25 countries are in “Level 2: Covid-19 Moderate” —which means 50 to 100 covid cases per 100,000 residents in the past 28 days. In this category are included attractive destinations such as Mexico, The Bahamas, Fiji, and Paraguay.

Those who prefer to follow the agency’s advice can visit destinations on “Level 1: COVID-19 Low”, which includes countries with 50 or fewer cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people. There are over 50 countries on this list, including attractive destinations like Colombia, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, the Philippines, and India. 

The level categories represent a dynamic system that is constantly changing and being updated depending on recent information related to each destination. Revising CDC’s updates and detailed information on a country is a good strategy for travelers who will be visiting foreign countries and want to stay safe. 

Read More:

U.S. State Department Issues 12 New Travel Advisory Updates

Travel Insurance That Covers Covid-19

CDC Urges Americans To Wear Face Masks When Flying

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Wednesday 11th of May 2022

Mostly funny than really serious !


Wednesday 11th of May 2022

Is anyone still listening to the CDC? They are as useless as State Department advisories on countries!


Wednesday 11th of May 2022

I once connected to a WiFi called "corona virus". Since then everything has gone down the hill...

What's interesting is that CDC has never described such a case, and what to do in it. That's why I got into trouble.


Wednesday 11th of May 2022

CDC ranks France level 3 while France ends masks on public transport. CDC is a bad joke.