Unvaccinated U.S. travelers entering Panama must quarantine upon arrival starting Thursday.
The Central American country added the U.S. to its list of “high-risk countries” on Thursday, a designation that makes entry for the unvaccinated more difficult through a mandatory 72-hour quarantine for travelers unable to show proof of vaccination.
Unvaccinated tourists must reserve and pay for the quarantine period at authorized hotels, which include properties operated by Westin, Wyndham and Holiday Inn.
After 72 hours, travelers will be required to take a coronavirus test. If negative, they can leave the quarantine. If positive, they will need to complete a 14-day quarantine in a hotel hospital and will be responsible for the costs.
Unvaccinated travelers will also need to present a negative COVID-19 test no more than 72 hours old to enter or pay $50 for a rapid test at the airport if a test is not possible in that time frame.
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Fully vaccinated travelers and children under 12 will be exempt from testing and quarantine requirements. All travelers, regardless of vaccination status, are required to fill out and present an electronic health affidavit to their airline before boarding a plane to Panama.
The country is the latest to enforce more stringent entry requirements on travelers from the U.S., which is facing its fourth COVID-19 surge. The country reported a seven-day moving average of 145,675 new cases as of Tuesday, with about nearly 54% of the population fully vaccinated, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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