US Border with Canada and Mexico to Remain Closed through October 21
Update: Border restrictions on nonessential travel have been extended again, this time through Oct. 21, White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator Jeff Zients said Monday. A new international air travel system was announced recently, which will open travel for all vaccinated foreign nationals in early November. But there’s no indication on when land border restrictions will ease.
U.S. borders with Mexico and Canada will remain closed through August 21, according to documents published in the Federal Register. The previous border restrictions were set to end on Thursday, July 22, 2021.
The US has been limiting non-essential travel along its northern and southern borders since the start of the pandemic. Closures have been extended on a monthly basis. These restrictions exclude cross-border trade, US citizens and lawful permanent residents, as well as people traveling for medical purposes or to attend school. The restrictions are mainly aimed at those traveling for tourism purposes.
DHS does note positive developments in recent weeks. On June 7, 2021, CDC moved Canada and Mexico from COVID-19 Level 4 (Very High) to Level 3 (High) in recognition of conditions that, while still requiring significant safeguards, are improving.
This latest closure extension with Canada at least is somewhat surprising, and it could be the last one. Canada announced Monday that it would reopen its borders to fully vaccinated U.S. citizens and permanent residents on August 9. That means that for two weeks in August, Americans will be able to cross the border into Canada but Canadians won’t be allowed to visit the United States through its land borders. Canadians and Mexicans have been allowed to fly into the U.S. with proof of a negative coronavirus test or recovery from COVID-19, which is a requirement before boarding any international flight to the U.S..