Information updated as of May 18, 2020

COVID-19 virus related emergency overseas? Questions about assistance to depart an international location to return to the United States?

Contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate, or call our assistance call center:

At present the Department of State is making every effort to assist U.S. citizens overseas who wish to return to the United States. If you wish to return to the United States, you should make arrangements to do so now. In countries where commercial departure options remain available, U.S. citizens should arrange for immediate return to the United States by commercial carrier, unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period.

For additional information, see our Frequently Asked QuestionsThe Global Level 4 Health Advisory, and What the Department of State Can and Can’t Do in a Crisis, and Global Advisory

Click here for our COVID FAQs Search Tool.

Information for Travelers Returning to the United States:

U.S. Citizens Returning from Europe

U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents will be permitted to return from the United KingdomIreland, and the European Schengen area. The Department of Homeland Security has issued instructions requiring U.S. passengers that have been in the United Kingdom, Ireland and the Schengen area to travel through select airports where the U.S. Government has implemented enhanced screening procedures. See the our FAQs on the Presidential Proclamation on travel from Europe and  DHS website for further details.

The Schengen area encompasses the following 26 European countries: AustriaBelgiumCzech RepublicDenmarkEstoniaFinlandFranceGermanyGreeceHungaryIcelandItalyLatviaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMaltaNetherlandsNorwayPolandPortugalSlovakiaSloveniaSpainSweden, and Switzerland.

Please see our U.S. Travelers in Europe page for additional information on travel from the Schengen area.

U.S. Citizens Returning from China

Any U.S. citizen returning to the United States who has been in China in the previous 14 days may be subject to up to 14 days of quarantine.

Please read these Department of Homeland Security supplemental instructions for further details.

Cruise Ship Passengers

U.S. citizens, particularly travelers with underlying health conditions, should not travel by cruise ship at this time. CDC notes increased risk of infection of COVID-19 in a cruise ship environment. In order to curb the spread of COVID-19, many countries have implemented strict screening procedures that have denied port entry rights to ships and prevented passengers from disembarking. In some cases, local authorities have permitted disembarkation but subjected passengers to local quarantine procedures.  

While the U.S. government has evacuated some cruise ship passengers in recent weeks, repatriation flights should not be relied upon as an option for U.S. citizens under the potential risk of quarantine by local authorities. Cruise passengers should stay home for 14 days after returning from travel, monitor their health, and practice social distancing.  

CDC notes that older adults and travelers with underlying health issues should avoid situations that put them at increased risk for more severe disease. This entails avoiding crowded places, avoiding non-essential travel such as long plane trips, and especially avoiding embarking on cruise ships. Passengers with plans to travel by cruise ship should contact their cruise line companies directly for further information and continue to monitor the Travel.state.gov website and see the latest information from the CDC

U.S. Students Abroad

American students overseas should return to the United States as soon as possible. Students abroad may face unpredictable circumstances, quarantine, and sudden travel restrictions. Adequate health care may not be available overseas.

The CDC recommends institutes of higher education (IHE) consider postponing or canceling upcoming student foreign exchange programs. In addition, CDC recommends IHE consider asking current program participants to return to their home country. 

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As of March 18, 2020, the World Health Organization has officially declared the global coronavirus, COVID-19, outbreak a pandemic. The healthy, well-being and safety of our entire travel community are and will always be our top priority. K&L Travel and Tours is closely monitoring the coronavirus and in daily contact with our travel partners to provide you with the latest information regarding your travel plans for right now and in the future.

What is the Europe travel ban announced by the President?


On Friday, March 13th, the U.S. announced an update to the travel restrictions that suspends all travel from Europe into the United States for non-citizens. Americans returning from all restricted countries will now be required to travel through designated airports which are causing high wait time. 

 

For domestic travel, “Depending on your unique circumstances, you may choose to delay or cancel your plans. If you do decide to travel, be sure to practice precautions to prevent getting and spreading COVID-19,” the CDC writes. 

 

Additional Resources:

Should I cancel my upcoming travel plans?


Ultimately this is a personal decision and we are here to help. Leverage the knowledge to stay current as the travel industry continues to update and modify their itineraries and policies.

Depending on when you are scheduled to travel, the situation could be very different. It’s always best to work with us to discuss all vacation options. Stay on top of all travel advisory updates and check with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. State Department.

What are the voluntary cruise suspensions and new cancellation policies?


To assist you further with your travel decisions, new policies are being offered by the cruise lines and several airlines. Here’s what the cruise lines are doing so you can cruise with confidence.

  • Carnival Cruise Line- Carnival Cruise Line is temporarily pausing service, effective with sailings departing Saturday, March 14 through April 09, 2020, across its fleet of North America based ships. Cancel up to 30 days prior to your scheduled departure date. Any cancellation charges will be held as a future credit (FCC) to be redeemed on a cruise within one year of the original sailing. NOTE: enhanced screening procedures and other information here.

  • Celebrity Cruises- Effective immediately, Celebrity Cruises is suspending sailing of their entire fleet globally at midnight March 15, 2020. The goal is to resume operations on April 11th, 2020.  Cancel any cruises that set sail through July 31, 2020, up to 48 hours before you sail and receive a future cruise credit (FCC). NOTE: enhanced travel restrictions and health screening protocols here.

  • Holland America Line- Effective immediately, Holland America has voluntarily paused global cruise operations of its 14 ships for 30 days, impacting sailings scheduled to depart through April 14, 2020. Cancel any cruise or Alaska Land+Sea Journey through October 15, 2020, and receive a Future Cruise Credit! (Cancel within 48 hours on cruises departing before July 31, 2020 - and within 30 days on cruises departing Aug. 1 - Oct. 15, 2020). All Asia cruises remaining in the 2020 season have been canceled. NOTE: health advisory and travel safety procedures here

  • Norwegian Cruise Line- Effective immediately, Norwegian Cruise Line is suspending cruise voyages across the entire 17-ship fleet with embarkation dates from March 13 to April 11, 2020. Cancel any cruise that sets sail before September 30, 2020, up to 48 hours before sailing for a future cruise credit (FCC). NOTE: preventative measure to ensure travel safety here.

  • Princess Cruises- Effective immediately, there is a voluntary and temporary pause on global ship operations of its 18 cruise ships for 60 days, March 12 through May 11, 2020. Cancel any cruise through July 31, 2020, up to 48 hours before sailing and receive a future cruise credit (FCC). NOTE: health advisory and travel safety procedures here

  • Royal Caribbean International- Effective immediately, Royal Caribbean Cruises LTD. is suspending operations for sailings worldwide effective at midnight, March 15th. The goal is to resume operations on April 11th, 2020. Cancel any cruises that set sail through July 31, 2020, up to 48 hours before you sail and receive a future cruise credit (FCC). NOTE: enhanced travel restrictions and health screening protocols here.

 

Visit the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) for more information.

Many airlines have stepped in to offer waivers on fees for flight changes to offer more travel flexibility.

  • American Airlines- You can make a one-time change before your original departure date for tickets purchased between March 1 - April 30, 2020.

  • Delta Airlines- You have the option to change your ticket, one time, and the change fee will be waived for travel in March and April 2020.

  • JetBlue- No change or cancellation fees for flights booked between February 27 – April 30, 2020.

  • United Airlines- No change or cancellation fees for tickets issued March 9 - April 30, 2020.

Please check with your airline frequently for up-to-the-minute information about your flight plans.

Should I buy travel insurance before taking any vacation?


We highly recommend travel insurance for any type of vacation. Travel insurance provides you peace of mind for any unexpected travel interruption or emergency such as travel delays, bad weather lost luggage and medical emergencies in foreign countries.

If you are unsure about your current policy, we encourage you to reach out to our partner, Allianz Global Assistance, for further assistance or to file a claim.

Allianz Global Assistance has taken several steps to assist you and your clients and I would like to share the following updates with you.

Here is the proactive position we have taken as of March 16:

  • Coverage. To see the steps we are taking to better serve our customers, please visit AllianzTravelInsurance.com and view our current Coverage Alert. Coverage information will also be sent out directly to customers who have purchased one of our plans and have future travel dates.

  • Date changes to existing policies: If the customer changes the dates of their trip, they can also change the dates of coverage on their travel protection plan, up to 770 days after the initial purchase of their plan. If the customer does not yet know their new travel dates, we can issue a credit that can be applied toward insurance for later travel taking place within 770 days after their initial purchase date. You can easily make these changes in AgentMax or by visiting AllianzTravelInsurance.com/partner.

  • Plan refunds: For a temporary period, we are offering refunds for the cost of the travel protection plan to customers who wish to cancel their travel protection plan if the customer’s travel supplier cancels the customer’s trip due to COVID-19, so long as no payable claim has been filed under the plan. Other plan cancellation rules continue to apply as well (generally 15 days free look period; varies based on plan and state of residence).

  • What if there is a price difference between FCC and future cruise booking?

    • Travelers will be responsible for the difference if the new booking is lower or higher than the future cruise credit (FCC). We will guide you through this process as the policies vary by the cruise line.

  • Is Travel Insurance included in my FCC?

    • Generally, it is not. It is best to check with the cruise line directly since all cruise line policies are different.

  • Do future cruise credits (FCC) expire?

    • Yes. Please mark your calendars and make sure you sail prior to the FCC expiration date.  Book early to secure the best value, amenities, stateroom accommodations and choice of itinerary .

  • Should I book future travel?

    • Protecting the travelers’ safety  is of the utmost importance and  we work closely with our travel partners to provide you with the flexibility and confidence when booking future travel.  

  • If you decide to postpone your cruise vacation, we can provide you with great alternative vacation plans with close to home destinations like the Bahamas, Caribbean, and Mexico as well as exploring Alaska, theme parks, national parks and many more beautiful sites in America.

 

Tips for Protecting You and Your Family


Simply continue to go about your daily life as best as you can with some good tips along the way.

  1. Stay informed

  2. Practice great hand hygiene and wash with soap and water

  3. Do not touch your face with unwashed hands

  4. Cough and sneeze in your elbow, not your hands

  5. Stay home when sick and consult with your doctor

  6. And most importantly, be kind and take care of each other.

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