Testing Positive for the Coronavirus Overseas: What You Need to Know

If you test positive, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that you isolate and delay travel for 10 days, regardless of symptoms or a negative test taken within the isolation period. The country where you are living has its own rules for quarantine and isolation. The rules differ from country to country and the isolation period may be longer than 10 days. positive. If their symptoms improve and they feel better for at least 24 hours and they test negative for the virus twice within a 24-hour period, they can stop isolating. Or, if after six days they test negative once, they can stop isolating. Unvaccinated people are advised to self-isolate for 10 days, but can leave isolation if they meet the same requirements for negative tests.

Some other destinations, especially in Asia, may require mandatory quarantine or isolation in a government facility or designated hotel for 14 days or more.

This will depend on the regulations in the country you are visiting, so be sure to check what they say on the local health ministry websites. In most places, tourists are not required to officially report a positive test result to the government, even if you take your test in person at a local health facility, the results are often sent to the regional or national health authority.

Most countries, including popular European destinations like Greece, Italy and France, allow visitors to positively choose their own accommodation for the recommended period of self-isolation. You can find this information on US embassy websites. If you have booked a hotel or Airbnb for your trip, it is worth calling ahead of time and seeing what their policy is for isolation and whether they should be available should you extend your stay.

Some lodging facilities will require you to isolate alone in a separate room, even if your family members or travel companions test negative. You should also ask about access to food and medical facilities, especially if you are staying in a remote area.

It’s useful to have a plan B in place in case your hotel or rental can’t accommodate you, or you have a cheaper option available if you have to self-isolate for 10 days. Many countries have designed “quarantine hotels” or apartments and some resorts in popular tourist destinations like Spain, Portugal and Mexico allow guests to quarantine at a discounted rate.

While most people are expected to test negative within 10 days of a positive coronavirus test, it may take weeks or even months, according to the global health partnership Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. If you find yourself in that position, and feel well enough to travel, you may return to the United States but will need to obtain the “Documentation of Recovery.”

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