Extended Travel Restrictions by the Biden Administration

In June 2021, the travel restrictions by the Biden Administration between Mexican, Canadian, and the U.S. land ports were extended until August. The Administration has confirmed that this policy is for “maintaining cross-border activities with Canada and Mexico that support health security, trade, commerce, supply security, and other essential activities while taking critical steps to protect [U.S.] citizens and to curb the spread of the virus.”

However, non-essential travel to the U.S. is still in place to prevent COVID from spreading. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) categorizes such travel as being for tourist purposes. Essential traveling includes individuals who are traveling for work, medical reasons, or returning to their permanent residency.

The decision to extend the restrictions on travel contrast the ones between Canada and Mexico. The Canadian government confirmed in July that any lawful permanent inhabitants or U.S. citizens that are vaccinated don’t need to quarantine when they enter Canada. From August, any eligible travelers can also enter Canada for any reasons, essential or otherwise. However, you do need to present vaccination proof before you enter the country.

The travel restrictions by Canada signal that the pandemic is moving in a more positive direction. However, the extension of travel restrictions shows that it isn’t moving into that great of a path. With increased difficulty in getting more individuals to vaccinate, the immediate future doesn’t look that good for the United States. Travelers who are heading to the U.S. through their land ports should be aware that travel restrictions will remain in effect through August.

Countries That Will Face a COVID-19 Travel Ban

The United States has maintained travel restrictions on a total of 33 countries that includes Iran, India, the U.K., China, Brazil, and more. There are definitely exemptions in place for any residents and U.S. citizens with specific rules for immediate members of a family. All of these travel restrictions will remain in-place under the Biden Administration.

Consular Posts and Travel Restrictions

There are also delays that are continuing for consulate positions around the world when it comes to the U.S. in countries with or without travel bans. There is definitely some progress that has been made in terms of their visa services, but there are still some issues that members of U.S. consulates are facing to this day due to COVID-19. There have been complaints of local restrictions, personnel shortages, processing delays, and more.

With a lot of countries now lifting restrictions, some issues about appointment scheduling and processing are now dependent on where the consulate is located. A lot of consulates and embassies are setting a priority based on the importance of the application. Nonimmigrant visas are categorized as lower priority than other types of visas. Unless applicants can offer an urgent need for travel, they may be received with some reluctance.

COVID-19 Test Result Needs

To enter the U.S., you have to submit a negative test result for COVID-19. All international travelers need to provide this result at least three days before they actually board the flight. It doesn’t matter about your vaccination history or citizenship; you still need to submit it.

In Conclusion

Any business and travelers should remember that the situation for the pandemic is ever-changing. You will need to keep a consistent eye on the consular and travel experiences for all. Calling the U.S. immigration law landscape “dynamic” is really the understatement of the century.

If you have any questions or require more information about US Immigration and Nationality Laws, contact the Nachman, Phulwani, Zimovcak (NPZ) Law Group. If you have more questions on how Immigration and Nationality Laws i