The US Extends Land Border Restrictions with Canada and Mexico

The US government has extended the current land border restrictions for nonessential travel with neighbors Canada and Mexico through October 21, 2021. Broadly, the restriction maintains a ban on travel for tourism.

From the Federal Register on guidelines with Canada:

Travel through the land ports of entry and ferry terminals along the United States-Canada border shall be limited to “essential travel,” which includes, but is not limited to:

  • U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents returning to the United States;
  • Individuals traveling for medical purposes ( e.g., to receive medical treatment in the United States);
  • Individuals traveling to attend educational institutions;
  • Individuals traveling to work in the United States;
  • Individuals traveling for emergency response and public health purposes;
  • Individuals engaged in lawful cross-border trade;
  • Individuals engaged in official government travel or diplomatic travel;
  • Members of the U.S. Armed Forces, and the spouses and children of members of the U.S. Armed Forces, returning to the United States; and
  • Individuals engaged in military-related travel or operations.

Last month, Canada reopened to fully vaccinated US travelers for nonessential travel. The current restrictions don’t restrict US citizens from returning to the US.

The restrictions with Canada and Mexico were first enacted in March 2020 and extended each month since.

Also, on Monday, White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients announced that the US would reopen to nearly all international travel for fully vaccinated travelers starting in November. However, in the announcement, he said, “we do not have any updates to the land border policies at this point.”

Erickson Insights

In June, the White House launched working groups with the EU, UK, Canada, and Mexico to chart a path toward reopening and lifting travel restrictions.

Erickson Immigration Group will continue to share updates as more news is available. If you have questions about anything we’re reporting above or case-specific questions, please contact your employer or EIG attorney.