Biden Plans to Reinstate COVID-19 Travel Restrictions for the UK, Europe and Brazil

Last Updated on February 23, 2023


On January 26, 2021, the Biden Administration reinstated a COVID-19 travel ban for the UK, Europe, and Brazil. The ban was also extended to South Africa. 

Please see Envoy's latest announcement for more information. 

Key Points

  • On January 18, 2021, President Trump signed an order lifting some COVID-19 travel bans
  • The U.S. planned to end COVID-19 travel bans against Brazil, Ireland, the UK, and the Schengen zone on January 26, 2021
  • The incoming Biden administration intends to reinstate the travel ban
  • Travel bans will also remain in place for China and Iran


The incoming Biden administration has announced plans to block President Trump’s executive order, scheduled to take effect on January 26, 2021, that would lift travel bans for Brazil, Ireland, the UK, and the Schengen Area.

What are the Changes?

A COVID-19 travel ban that was imposed against the Schengen area in March 2020 was lifted through President Trump’s executive order. The impacted countries include Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Finland, Greece, Germany, Iceland, Hungary, Latvia, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Malta, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain. Elsewhere in Europe, travel restrictions were planned to be lifted against Ireland and the UK. A COVID-19 travel ban that was issued for Brazil in May 2020 was lifted as well.

Due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns, the incoming Biden administration intends to keep the travel ban in place.

Looking Ahead

President-elect Biden plans to reimpose the travel ban shortly after taking office due to ongoing global health concerns.


Envoy is pleased to provide you this information, which was prepared in collaboration with Sara Herbek, who is the Managing Partner at Global Immigration Associates, P.C. (, Envoy’s affiliated law firm.

Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an Envoy-affiliated attorney or another qualified professional.