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Experts warn Omicron variant could slow travel trends down

Lifting of international COVID-19 travel ban welcome news for Las Vegas tourism industry
Posted at 6:20 AM, Dec 02, 2021

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Just as U.S. airlines were on the verge of profitability again, the Omicron variant could slow travel down once again. Health officials are looking to take action and slow the spread by placing tougher rules on travelers.

If you’re looking to get away, Omar Kaywan, a travel expert and co-founder of Goose insurance, says it’s best to take some added precautions for the time being.

“First things first, you should not be really traveling unless you are fully vaccinated and it’s not just necessarily being vaccinated to protect you but also it is becoming a requirement for entry when looking at international travel. Right now, there's a lot of pent up demand for travel but with that being said, travelers do need to be cautious,” Kaywan said.

RELATED: Southern Nevada's next steps with Omicron variant next door

Kaywan said if you do have travel plans, you don’t necessarily need to cancel them just yet.

So far, the Omicron variant has been found in 20 countries including the U.S. The first confirmed case came from California.

Over the past few days, flights have been suspended and travel bans have been placed to and from specific countries.

Top federal officials are considering making changes to the U.S. travel policy by requiring COVID-19 testing for everyone entering the U.S.. 24 hours before their flight. Officials say at some point, travelers in the U.S. may have to be retested after they arrive regardless of vaccination status.

“It is definitely a deterrent for travel so it’ll have a bit of a negative impact for airlines and overall travel, but I also do know being in touch with customers every single day, it's not changing their plans right now,” Kaywan said.