Points Panda has partnered with a variety of financial companies including CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Points Panda and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. For more information please read our full Advertiser Disclosure.
Travel restrictions are a new major factor when planning travel in the COVID19 era. Many websites have pages like Kayak travel restrictions to keep you updated on the latest restrictions involved with traveling to and from the US. Currently, the leading players are Trip.com, Kayak, and Iatatravelcenter.com All of which have a detailed page about the travel restrictions faced by Americans who want to go abroad.
Ensuring you have the correct information and meet entry requirements before you travel is now crucial so that you aren’t denied boarding, or worse, getting put in a quarantine hotel at great expense after arriving at your destination.
So of all three players Kayak, Trip.com, and Iatatravelcenter which is the best.
Kayak Travel Restrictions Map
A simple map-based interface where you choose your country of origin from the drop-down menu, the map will update to reflect the relevant restrictions for the country of origin.
You can browse various destinations by clicking on other countries to view the associated restrictions. Countries are color-coded to give you a quick idea of the restrictions.
- Green for no restrictions for most visitors
- Yellow for open borders, but with restrictions, such as vaccination, a negative COVID-19 test, and/or quarantine.
- Red for closed borders
When you click on a country to get a quick summary of the travel requirements, plus a “Show more” link that opens a window with a more detailed description of the restrictions and requirements for traveling to that country, including testing requirements, quarantine requirements, and masking policies. You’ll also find links to documents and official sources for more detailed information about policies and requirements.
Below the map is a box that allows you to sign up for email updates, so you don’t have to check the map each day to get the most updated information. You can choose whichever countries you’re interested in from the drop-down menu.
You keep scrolling to find an alphabetical list of countries, and each has its own drop-down menu for country of origin, so make sure you’ve got the right one selected. You can narrow down the list by region and filter by different categories of restrictions.
Each country is listed in its own tile, and each tile lists the broader category of restrictions, a quick blurb of the restrictions, and the percentage of the population that’s been vaccinated. Each tile also has a “Show More” button that opens the same detailed guide you can access from the map
For travel within the US, you can use the United States Travel Restrictions map, No origin is needed, just click the states to see what they require. States are color-coded to give you a quick idea of the restrictions.
- Green for no restrictions
- Yellow for restrictions not including quarantine
- Red for quarantine required
Keep scrolling down the page to find an alphabetical list of the states with their respective restrictions. Kayak tries to keep things as up-to-the-minute as possible, but be sure to check the updated date to make sure that you’re getting the most recent information.
IATA TravelCentre COVID-19 Travel Regulations Map
A simpler, more straightforward platform with a map interface that gives you a basic idea of the degree to which travel is restricted. Clicking on a country provides you with the country’s official travel restrictions. Where relevant, links to more information, necessary documents, etc. are provided
There is no country of origin specification. IATA works directly with airlines and governments to get the most reliable possible information.
Trip.com Travel Bans & Travel Restrictions by Country/Region
Similar to Kayak, but with even more information and tools. You use a Drop-down menu for your point of origin, then use a second drop-down menu to choose destination location or browse destination locations using the map on the right side of the screen or the list on the left. The list has countries sorted by continent, so make sure you’ve selected the right one.
Selecting a country on the map brings it to the top of the list on the left. Countries on the map have color-coded dots to roughly indicate whether entry to the country is as normal, partially restricted, or completely restricted.
Trip.com provides information for both traveling to your destination and returning to your original location, so both parts of your trip are covered. Information includes a quick description of visa, vaccination, testing, and quarantine requirements as relevant, then a detailed description of the country’s travel regulations.
You can use your Trip.com profile to track updates in travel restrictions, and you view the date and time of the last update at the top of the page, so you know how recent the information is. All this information can also be accessed through the Trip.com app.
An elegant trick that trip.com has up its sleeve is the ability to share your search results. The Share button allows you to send the requirements to your travel companions.
In addition to restrictions, there are buttons to view flights or hotels to your travel destination and location of origin to help you with the next steps of planning your trip.
One minor niggle with the Trip.com site is that you can’t view the entire map at once unless you have a huge monitor, so you have to drag the map around. It’s a pretty minor inconvenience, though, especially compared to the convenience offered by being able to see both destination and point of origin entry requirements and browse flights and hotels easily.
Returning to the US
One thing to remembers is that travel restrictions work both ways. Not only do you have to figure out what the requirements are for the country you travel to, but you also need to know what the requirements are you need to meet to re-enter the US. Your best option for the latest advice is the head over to the US Department of State to find out what you need to do before coming home.
Kayak vs. IATA TravelCentre vs. Trip.com: Which Is Best?
Trip.com is the most convenient to use, with both destination and re-entry information in the same place, plus the option to book hotels and flights. The addition of the app takes it to another level; the ability to share the information easily and the option to track updates with your Trip.com account is ideal.
Kayak is perhaps a bit easier to navigate and more intuitive, giving you most of the same features, including the ability to sign up for policy updates. It’s also a better tool for travel within the United States.
However, it doesn’t have the extra features that Trip.com does. Then again, if you don’t need or want those extras, it’s just as good of an option as Trip.com
IATA TravelCentre is the most basic website, but if you just want to access the word-for-word travel policies, it’s the most straightforward option with a no-nonsense approach to presenting information.
If you are making complex travel plans, arguably, Trip.com is your best friend. However, if you are simply opting for a quick and easy point-to-point trip without booking a lot of ancillary services (visiting and staying with family), then Kayak could be a more straightforward solution!