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New York working to require passengers from the UK to have a negative COVID-19 test

Dec. 21, 2020
3 min read
New York working to require passengers from the UK to have a negative COVID-19 test
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British Airways passengers arriving in New York from the United Kingdom will have to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test prior to departure. The news comes in the wake of the development of a highly contagious variant of the COVID-19 virus that has spread rapidly in the U.K.

On Monday, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the state's new agreement with British Airways for travelers arriving into New York to have proof of a negative COVID-19 test. British Airways currently flies from London Heathrow (LHR) to New York's Kennedy International Airport (JFK).

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At this time, the negative test requirement only applies to British Airways passengers, not those traveling with other airlines. However, it's likely that the requirement will be extended to those traveling with other airlines.

"Starting tomorrow British Airways will require passengers on U.K. flights to NY to show a negative COVID test before departure," Cuomo said in a tweet. "We are in conversations with Delta and Virgin Atlantic to do the same."

Since the news of the new variant of the COVID-19 virus came out of the U.K., nearly 50 countries have banned flights to and from the U.K., including Italy, Germany and France. Other countries now require that all U.K. arrivals have a negative COVID-19 test. The new strain has already been found in Italy.

Related: Chaos in the UK following new travel bans and flight cancellations to slow spread of new coronavirus strain

Cuomo called on the federal government to consider a mandatory negative test for all travelers coming to the U.S. on flights from the United Kingdom. Additionally, Cuomo has pushed for a travel ban from Europe.

"It's high time the federal government takes swift action, because today that variant is getting on a plane and landing in JFK, and all it takes is one person," Cuomo said in a statement.

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Since March, the Trump administration has banned non-nationals from entering the U.S. if they're traveling from Europe, China, Iran and Brazil. While there were reports in November that the government was considering removing that ban for travelers coming from Europe, nothing has been made official.

If the federal government were to go ahead with a ban on flights from Europe, it could affect all travelers attempting to fly from the continent to the U.S., not just non-nationals.

As of Sunday, all of London and much of the southeast of England is under strict Tier 4 restrictions. Under the new, most-extreme tier in the country, all non-essential shops must close. Additionally, the government has implemented a "stay at home" message.

Those who need to travel for work, education or childcare are exempt from the Tier 4 restrictions.

Featured image by Getty Images

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    The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.

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  • Annual Fee

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    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
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Why We Chose It

It's hard to find a card that competes with the mile-long list of benefits that come with the Amex Business Platinum. While it's certainly not the card for the average consumer, a business owner with tons of expenses -- especially related to travel -- will find this card incredibly valuable. This card is similar to the consumer version that Amex offers, but with more business-oriented perks around statement credits and earning rates that are a better fit for business owners.

Pros

  • An up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee every four to five years
  • Up to $400 annual credit for eligible U.S. Dell purchases (enrollment required)
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  • Access to the Fine Hotels & Resorts program and Hotel Collection
  • Extended warranty protection
  • International Airline Program and Cruise Privileges Program

Cons

  • Steep annual fee
  • Difficulty meeting $15,000 welcome offer for smaller businesses
  • Limited high-bonus categories outside of travel
  • The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, and 1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases.
  • Earn 1.5X points (that’s an extra half point per dollar) on eligible purchases at US construction material & hardware suppliers, electronic goods retailers and software & cloud system providers, and shipping providers, as well as on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else, on up to $2 million of these purchases per calendar year.
  • Unlock over $1,000 in annual statement credits on a curation of business purchases, including select purchases made with Dell Technologies, Indeed, Adobe, and U.S. wireless service providers.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year for checked baggage fees, lounge day passes, and more at one selected airline.
  • $189 CLEAR® Credit: Use your Card and get up to $189 back per year on your CLEAR® membership. CLEAR® is available at more than 50 U.S. airports and stadiums.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more lounge location options than any other credit card on the market as of 9/2021.
  • $695 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.