COVID-19 Travel Update – What you need to know to enter the US starting November 8, 2021
COVID-19 Travel Update- What you need to know to enter the US starting November 8, 2021
The White House has announced updates for air travel into the United States starting November 8, 2021. Non-citizen, non-immigrant air travelers to the United States will be required to be fully vaccinated and to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination status prior to boarding an airplane to fly to the US, with only limited exceptions.
The updated travel guidelines also include new protocols around testing. All unvaccinated travelers – whether U.S. Citizens, lawful permanent residents (LPRs), or the small number of excepted unvaccinated foreign nationals – will now need to test within one day of departure.
Please note that these regulations are subject to change, so always reach out to our office for specific questions about how these policies impact your case.
Travel Ban Lifted
Geographic COVID-19 related travel bans will be rescinded for foreign nationals from Brazil, China, India, Iran, Ireland, the European Schengen Area, South Africa and the United Kingdom. Foreign nationals must follow the requirements specified bellow.
Vaccine Mandate for International Air Travelers
Starting November 8, all foreign nationals must now be fully vaccinated to enter the United States. There are very limited exemptions to this policy (such as children who do not yet qualify for vaccination). In addition, international travelers must continue to present a negative COVID-19 test within three days of boarding a flight to the United States.
Accepted vaccines include those authorized or approved by the FDA and WHO Emergency Use Listing vaccines. The US will accept any combination of vaccines from the FDA and WHO lists for individuals to achieve full-vaccination status (for example, one dose of Pfizer-BioNTech and a second dose of Oxford-AztraZeneca).
- FDA Authorized/Approved Vaccines: Moderna, Johnson & Johnson (Jansen), and Pfizer-BioNTech
- WHO Approved Vaccines: Moderna, Johnson & Johnson (Jansen), and Pfizer-BioNTech, Oxford-AztraZeneca/Covishield, Sinopharm, and Sinovac.
Individuals can be considered fully vaccinated ≥2 weeks after receipt of the last dose if they have received any single dose of an FDA approved/authorized or WHO EUL approved single-dose series (i.e., Janssen), or any combination of two doses of an FDA approved/authorized or WHO emergency use listed COVID-19 two-dose series (i.e. mixing and matching).
Vaccine and Testing Requirements for US Citizen and Permanent Resident Air Travelers
US Permanent residents (and citizens) who are vaccinated will continue to be required to present a negative COVID-19 test within three days of air travel to the United States.
US permanent residents (and citizens) who are unvaccinated will be required to present a negative COVID-19 test within one day of travel.
Requirements for Children
Children under 18 are excepted from the vaccination requirement for foreign national travelers. Children between the ages of 2 and 17 are required to take a pre-departure test. If traveling with a fully vaccinated adult, an unvaccinated child can test three days prior to departure (consistent with the timeline for fully vaccinated adults). If an unvaccinated child is travelling alone or with unvaccinated adults, they will have to test within one day of departure.
Border Crossing from Canada and Mexico (Title 19 Restrictions Lifted)
Starting in early November, DHS will allow non-essential travel across regular land and ferry borders for fully vaccinated travelers. Non-essential travel includes tourism and visiting friends and family.
DHS will allow essential travel across regular land and ferry borders for unvaccinated individuals. Essential travel includes essential workers with employment in the US. Continue to communicate with our office and your employer if you have questions.
Please note that rules for entry at the border will be updated in January and full vaccination will be required to enter the US at that time.