From November 8th, EU citizens can enter the US again and since the airlines will check COVID-19 PCR test and vaccination prior to boarding, I assume that they will just accept the digital EU vaccination certificate (QR code). At least on departure from an EU airport they should even be able to actually scan the QR code and verify that the certificate is genuine. But what kind of proof do I need in stores, restaurants etc. in the US? They might not be familiar with the digital EU certificate, so I can imagine that the smartphone app that I use at home will not be accepted. Will the airline provide some kind of document that I can use during my stay?
Your digital vaccine certificate from the EU should work fine, though I'd bring a paper printout too just in case. For example in King County this is directly addressed in the vaccine passport health order:
What is considered proof of vaccination?
- CDC COVID-19 vaccine record card or photo of vaccine card
- Printed certificate from MyIRMobile.com
- Other official immunization record from within or outside the U.S., including from your health care provider. A photo or photocopy of this card is also acceptable.
As you can see, the CDC card is just one option and they explicitly allow foreign documents. For NYC the rules are similarly friendly to alternative documents:
For proof of vaccination, you can use:
CDC Vaccination Card. A digital photo or photocopy of this card is also acceptable.
NYC Vaccination Record or other official immunization record, including from your health care provider. A digital photo or photocopy of this card is also acceptable. If you are unable to get this record, call 311.
Businesses likewise acknowledge this, for example a restaurant in NYC has the following policy:
For International Guests:
- Please bring a copy or your vaccination record and valid photo ID. Documentation showing that a guest received any of the vaccines approved for emergency use by the World Health Organization will be accepted.
Finally remember that not all states have a "vaccine passport" program. Around half of them went as far as to ban them and only a handful currently require them statewide. So depending on your destination you might not have to show your vaccine card at all.
But what kind of proof do I need in stores, restaurants etc. in the US?
A friend of mine was in this situation when visiting Washington state and simply showing a picture/screenshot of the certificate on his phone worked all the time for restaurants/bars/clubs. The restaurants/bars/clubs were checking his name on the vaccine certificate as well as the vaccination, and sometimes looked at whether his name was matching the ID. Nobody checked if the certificate was genuine and the paper version was never asked. He went to ~20 restaurants/bars/clubs. Some don't require vaccination proof.
I am in the USA right now and encounter this issue. For my work, only an official paper document worked. Those should have been given to you when you were vaccinated.
I am from France, there we got an app that display a qr code and your vaccination status. This worked nicely for bar and restaurant. Until now, all of them accepted my electronic proof.