The White House said it will keep its existing COVID-related travel restrictions amid surges of the highly contagious Delta variant.

“We will maintain existing travel restrictions at this point for a few reasons. The more transmissible Delta variant is spreading both here and around the world. Driven by the Delta variant, cases are rising here at home, particularly among those who are unvaccinated and appear likely to continue in the weeks ahead,” press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Monday at a White House briefing.

This decision means non-U.S. citizens traveling from the European Schengen area, the United Kingdom and other regions will be barred from entering the U.S.

Other major countries part of this long-running travel ban include China, India, South Africa, Iran and Brazil.

The U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico will also remain closed to non-essential travel until at least Aug. 21, the U.S. Homeland Security Department said last week. These measures were announced even though Canada said it would allow fully vaccinated U.S. citizens to travel starting Aug. 9. 

The Biden administration has been under growing pressure from the travel industry and U.S. allies to lift pandemic-era restrictions limiting who can travel to the U.S., CNN reported.

“The administration understands the importance of international travel and is united in wanting to reopen international travel in a safe and sustainable manner,” a White House official told Reuters.

According to Tourism Economics, U.S. travel spending in 2020 declined an unprecedented 42% from the previous year. Meanwhile, international travel spending fell 76%.

However, pandemic restrictions have not only impacted the economy but have also separated families, preventing people from seeing each other due to the numerous travel bans.

Psaki said on Friday that international travel is "something we would all like to see — not just for tourism, but for families to be reunited."