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US to lift travel restrictions

This may have been reported before, if so, I missed it.

My local paper reported this morning that starting in early November vaccinated foreign travelers will be allowed into the US. There was no mention of also needing a covid test.

Not said, but I hope that means returning vaccinated US travelers will no longer need a covid test.

Posted by
4292 posts

Frustrating thing for Canadians is that the US government still hasn't announced if mixed vaccines are acceptable. I'm one shot Astra and 1 shot Pfizer, me and 3.9 million other Canadians were vaccinated this way.

Posted by
1596 posts

Allan, us too (AZ and Moderna). But since I'm currently loving life in France, I couldn't care a jot!

Posted by
32264 posts

While this is a step in the right direction, it will be mostly useless to most Canadians because.....

  • We will still need a negative PCR test to return to Canada. That should put a stop to the quick trips across the border to do some grocery shopping or fill the tank up with some cheaper gas.
  • As mentioned above, there still hasn't been a ruling on the issue of mixed vaccines. I received a mix of Pfizer / Moderna and according to current rules, the CDC does not accept that (despite the fact that those two vaccines are identical).

It would be nice if someone would grant an exemption for Point Roberts.... SOON!

Posted by
1117 posts

That is weird. The studies I have read about say that the mixed vaccines actually provide a higher degree of protection than the ones with only one type of vaccine. Strange that the CDC shouldn't recognize that.

Posted by
8631 posts

Anna, in the US we haven't been mixing vaccines (yet) so its not an issue domestically. Unfortunately, the status of foreign travelers is not a priority for the Food & Drug Administration, CDC and Homeland Security to address. Even so, they would have to have a convincing amount of evidence to review, of which few studies were done here in the US. The priority right now is reviewing data on booster shots, which is more of an US issue. Sorry. Its not being intentionally mean.

Posted by
1117 posts

Oh, it doesn't affect me personally, I have got two Biontech shots. :-) Also, the United States aren't my next travel destination, though I would love to go there again some time soon.

It seems equally weird though if they should consider only studies done in the US. I would expect them to accept high quality peer-reviewed studies and not be biased depending on where studies were done.

Posted by
4292 posts

We will still need a negative PCR test to return to Canada. That
should put a stop to the quick trips across the border to do some
grocery shopping or fill the tank up with some cheaper gas.

I was talking to a friend yesterday who just got back from a cycling trip in Spain and France. He said the paperwork and testing made it much harder to get back into Canada then into either of those two countries. Andrea, I hope you'll respond with your experience once you're back. In the meantime we'll all wish we were you.

Posted by
8631 posts

Bob, this is what I read today per Frank II's link:

"Under new rules announced by the White House, vaccinated people who have had a negative test in the 72 hours before travelling will be allowed to enter."

So test is still needed.

Posted by
1598 posts

"As mentioned above, there still hasn't been a ruling on the issue of mixed vaccines. I received a mix of Pfizer / Moderna and according to current rules, the CDC does not accept that (despite the fact that those two vaccines are identical)."

The CDC will not allow us to mix vaccines. I have the Moderna shot and have not been able to get a booster shot because until now the only booster was Pfizer. Note, Moderna and Pfizer are based on the same technology but are not identical. The Moderna booster (which is in the final stages of approval) is only 50% strength and Phizer's is 100%.

Until someone does a test in the US that shows the mixing of shots is safe it won't happen here. I too wish the US would accept Canada's experience.

Posted by
1598 posts

""Under new rules announced by the White House, vaccinated people who have had a negative test in the 72 hours before travelling will be allowed to enter."

So test is still needed."

Only if you are coming by air or ship. The announcement that I read said:

"Non-U.S. air travelers will need to show proof of vaccination before boarding a flight, and will need to show proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test. Foreign visitors crossing a land border will not need to show proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test."

Note the exclusion for a test in crossing a land border.

Posted by
7906 posts

1) Will more countries now open up to vaccinated US travelers since the USA is now open to their travelers?

2) When will Israel open up to others?

3) I doubt if this means that returning Americans would not need the COVID test.

4) At what point would the vaccination requirement include the booster?

Posted by
1117 posts

Will more countries now open up to vaccinated US travelers since the
USA is now open to their travelers?

It's more like the other way around... Many countries have opened up to vaccinated US travelers quite some time ago in spite of the fact that the USA wasn't open to their travelers.

vaccinated Americans returning home are still required to show a test
result to get on the plane

Just wondering: Is that a government requirement or an airline requirement?

Posted by
8631 posts

Anna, government requirement. But they expect the airlines to enforce it by not letting people fly back without checking.

Posted by
923 posts

Anna, government requirement. But they expect the airlines to enforce it by not letting people fly back without checking.

Specifically it is a US government requirement; the airlines and airport security abroad are the enforcers. Nobody asks for it when you land back in the US.

Posted by
566 posts

My understanding of the new requirements starting in November are as follows. (These are just the COVID-specific requirements, all the usual visa requirements of course still also apply. Some of these requirements are of course already in place.)

Entering the United States by air:

  • Vaccinated travelers (all): must present a test taken within 3 calendar days prior to departure
  • Non-vaccinated travelers:
    • US citizens and permanent residents must present a test taken within 1 calendar day prior to departure + proof of purchasing a test to be taken after arrival in the US
    • Non-US citizens/permanent residents are not permitted

Entering the United States at the land border:

  • Vaccinated travelers (all): can enter, no testing requirements
  • Non-vaccinated travelers:
    • US citizens and permanent residents can enter, no testing requirements
    • Non-US citizens and permanent residents traveling for essential reasons (such as truck drivers and students) will be able to enter until January 2022. Starting in January, any non-US citizen/PR entering for any reason will need to be vaccinated.
Posted by
8631 posts

Anna, I may have spoken too soon about mixed vaccine approvals.

Posted by
4292 posts

Great news about the mixed vaccine approval. Now it's time to work on the Canadian government to ease up on entry requirements to get home. My wife has a friend who got back from San Diego last night. Testing cost $340 for her and her husband to meet requirements to fly home.