Travel Advisory (State) and Travel Health Notice (CDC) – January 6, 2021

It has come to our attention that our members have been concerned about the U.S. Embassy Travel Advisory.  Please be advised that the Advisory has been in place since August 2020 and, to date, no change has been made.  

However, more recently, the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated their COVID-19 Travel Health Notices, which may have caused some confusion. To help clarify:

There are two separate U.S. government agencies that have rankings for each country based on their own metrics. The U.S. Department of State has a Travel Advisory (for citizens considering travel abroad) and the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) has COVID-19 Travel Health Notices (THNs). The CDC’s COVID-19 THNs recently adapted their 3-Level THNs system to a COVID-19 specific 4-Level system. Many countries’ THNs levels were updated to reflect the change, including Malaysia.  Prior to December 2, 2020, Malaysia was a Level 3 “Avoid all non-essential travel” (the highest level than possible), but once CDC updated the levels, Malaysia moved to Level 4 “Avoid all travel”.  The general guidance continues to remain the same.  

As mentioned above, the Department of State Travel Advisory has been at Level 3: Reconsider Travel for Malaysia due to COVID-19 since August 6, 2020 and remains at Level 3 to date. For additional information, please see the full Travel Advisory. 

We encourage all American citizens to register with the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive the latest information from the U.S. Embassy directly.