COVID-19 TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS:
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
On October 25, 2021, President Biden issued a proclamation ending
travel bans that had been in effect for most of 2020 and 2021 restricting the entry of nonimmigrants who had been present in certain countries. The proclamation also created a new rule, effective November 8, 2021, that requires all adult nonimmigrant travelers entering the United States via air travel to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19,
with limited exceptions.
On January 22, 2022 this rule was extended to nonimmigrant travelers entering the United States via land ports of entry or by ferry from Canada or Mexico.
On April 4, 2022, the CDC issued an Amended Order to align post arrival public health requirements for excepted noncitizen nonimmigrants with current CDC recommendations. The Amended Order also clarifies that parents or guardians do not need to complete an attestation on behalf of children under 2 years of age.
Are you Fully Vaccinated for Air Travel to the United States?
You are considered fully vaccinated:
2 weeks (14 days) after your dose of an accepted single-dose vaccine
2 weeks (14 days) after your second dose of an accepted 2-dose series
2 weeks (14 days) after you received the full series of an accepted COVID-19 vaccine (not placebo) in a clinical trial
2 weeks (14 days) after you received 2 doses of any “mix-and-match” combination of accepted COVID-19 vaccines administered at least 17 days apart*
A person who has received only one dose of an accepted 2-dose series and has recovered from COVID-19 is NOT considered fully vaccinated for travel to the United States.
What You Need to Know If You Are a Nonimmigrant
If you are a non-U.S. citizen who is a nonimmigrant, you will need to show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States from a foreign country.
Some categories of nonimmigrants, however, are exempted from this requirement. If you meet the criteria for one of these categories, you will still need to fulfill additional requirements to travel by air to the United States.
Exempted Noncitizen Nonimmigrants
Categories of noncitizen nonimmigrants that meet the criteria for an exception under the Proclamation and the CDC’s Amended Order include:
Persons on diplomatic or official foreign government travel
Children under 18 years of age
Persons with documented medical contraindications to receiving a COVID-19 vaccine
Participants in certain COVID-19 vaccine trials
Persons issued a humanitarian or emergency exception
Persons with valid visas [excluding B-1 (business) or B-2 (tourism) visas] who are citizens of a foreign country with limited COVID-19 vaccine availability (See list for updates effective June 28, 2022)
Members of the U.S. Armed Forces or their spouses or children (under 18 years of age)
Sea crew members traveling with to a C-1 and D nonimmigrant visa
Persons whose entry would be in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State, Secretary of Transportation, or Secretary of Homeland Security (or their designees)
The list of exemptions from the vaccination requirement for entry by land and ferry is more limited.
If you travel by air to the United States under one of these exceptions, you will be required to attest that you are excepted from the requirement to present Proof of Being Fully Vaccinated Against COVID-19 based on one of the exceptions listed above. Based on the category of the exception, you may further be required to attest that:
You will be tested with a COVID-19 viral test 3–5 days after arrival in the United States, unless you have documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 in the past 90 days; and
You will self-isolate if the result of the post-arrival test is positive or if you develop COVID-19 symptoms.
Depending on the category of the exception, if you intend to stay in the United States for longer than 60 days you may additionally be required to attest that
You agree to be vaccinated against COVID-19; and
You have arranged to become fully vaccinated against COVID-19 within 60 days of arriving in the United States, or as soon thereafter as is medically appropriate.
For Noncitizen Nonimmigrants Who Do Not Qualify for Exemptions
The above information has been provided by the American Immigration Lawyers Association #AILAStandsWithImmigrants
This website is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal advice. Please do not act or refrain from acting based on anything you read on this site.
What Proof Is Required for Air Travel?
Before boarding a flight to the United States, adult nonimmigrant travelers must provide proof of vaccination:
Verifiable digital or paper records: This includes, but is not limited to, vaccination certificates or digital passes accessible via QR code (such as the UK NHS COVID Pass and the European Union Digital COVID Certificate).
Non-verifiable paper records: A paper vaccination record or a COVID-19 vaccination certificate issued by a national or subnational level agency or by an authorized vaccine provide (such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccination card).
Non-verifiable digital records: Digital photos of vaccination card or record, or a downloaded record or vaccination certificate from an official source (e.g., public health agency, government agency, or other authorized vaccine provider), or a record shown on a mobile phone app without a QR code.
Airlines will verify that the form of proof 1) includes a name and date of birth that matches other identification documents, 2) is from an official source within the country the vaccine was issued, and 3) shows full vaccination. You must confirm with the airline if translation is required for documents not in English.
Is a Negative Test and/or Quarantine Required?
As of June 12, 2022, a negative COVID test is no longer required before boarding a flight to the United States.
There continues to be no testing requirement for land/ferry crossings.
What Proof Is Required for Land Border and Ferry Crossings?
Travelers will be required to:
Verbally attest to their COVID-19 vaccination status;
Provide proof of a CDC-approved COVID-19 vaccination, as outlined on the CDC website;
Present a valid Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI)-compliant document, such as a valid passport, Trusted Traveler Program card, or Enhanced Tribal Card; and,
Be prepared to present any other relevant documents requested by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer during a border inspection.