Travel Tips

What to Know About Traveling with Your Vaccination Record Card

Here’s a breakdown of the CDC’s guidance on travel during COVID-19

The Vacationeer
Two woman walking happily into Parc Soleil® by Hilton Grand Vacations with luggage, Orlando, Florida.

If you’re like many Americans right now, you’re fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and itching to travel. As you begin to book your tickets and plan your dream itinerary, you may ask, “Do I need a vaccine passport to travel?” With so much misinformation about COVID-19 online, it’s important to understand the requirements for traveling domestically and abroad to avoid disrupting your travel plans.

Before You Go

The CDC recommends waiting to travel until you are fully vaccinated. Travel can increase your odds of catching and spreading COVID-19.  You’re fully vaccinated two weeks after your second dose for two-dose series or two weeks after your single-dose vaccine, so plan accordingly.

Close up of vaccine card and other travel-related items.    

Once you have your COIVD-19 vaccination record card, take a picture as a backup copy. However, you shouldn’t share images of your vaccine card on social media, especially since it contains personally identifiable information – such as your birthday and healthcare details – that scammers can use to steal your identity.         

Traveling with your vaccine record card may cause some wear and tear, but do not laminate the card. Even though laminating will make it more durable, the plastic will prevent the vaccine provider from adding information, such as a record of future shots. If you want to protect your card, you can purchase plastic sleeves that will keep your card crease- and stain-free as you resume your travels.

If you’ve lost your COVID-19 vaccination record card, you’ll need to contact your vaccination provider or your state health department directly, not the CDC. If you were vaccinated outside of the US and lost your vaccine card, contact the immunization information system or the health department in your state.

Do not buy fake cards, make your own or fill in blank cards with false information. Some scammers buy and sell vaccine cards, so avoid fraud and only get your card from legitimate providers administering vaccines.

You can also protect your fellow travelers from catching and spreading COVID-19 by wearing a face covering over your nose and mouth and social distancing, even if you are fully vaccinated. After travel, even if you are vaccinated, you’ll want to self-monitor for symptoms then self-quarantine and get tested if you do develop symptoms.

Domestic Travel

Couple walking along walkway with beach in the distance while on vacation, La Pacifica Los Cabos by Hilton Club.    

If you’re traveling within the United States, you don’t need your vaccine card to fly. However, state and local governments may have travel restrictions, such as testing requirements. Check the state or local health department of where you are going to be prepared and avoid disruptions to your travel plans.

Airlines may also require testing or other documents, so check your airline website frequently for changes. Check out these tips from a seasoned traveler to prepare a stress-free vacation that runs smoothly.

International Travel

The CDC has recommended vaccinations as part of international travel for decades, and many countries require travelers to be vaccinated against chickenpox (varicella), polio, measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) and more. You’ll likely need to pack your COVID-19 vaccination card alongside your yellow travel vaccine passport if you’re traveling internationally.

Many countries require proof of vaccination, a negative COVID-19 test or both. Check the requirements specific to the country you are flying to, as well as the airline.

If you’re planning to hop on a cruise, you’ll need a negative COVID-19 test one to three days before the trip and three to five days after, regardless of your vaccination status.

It’s important to take note of specific requirements and prepare for them as you travel during a pandemic. These guidelines are in place to ensure travelers remain healthy. And while you may not need to bring your vaccine record card with you, with a little extra preparation, you can safely travel within the US or abroad.

Read “4 Reasons to Feel Safe Traveling With Hilton Grand Vacations” for more details on how Hilton Grand Vacations ensures Owners, Guests and Team Members remain safe and healthy. 

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The Vacationeer

The Vacationeer is a collective of Hilton Grand Vacations storytellers whose goal is to inspire travelers to go further. We're always on the lookout for new destinations to explore, useful travel tips, and unique ideas to help you plan the most memorable vacations possible.

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