The United States has announced that it will extend the restriction on non-essential travel at its land border with Canada. Originally, the travel ban at land borders was due to expire on September 21. The announcement was made on Monday by White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients. The U.S. ban on non-essential travel across land borders continues even though the Canadian government has opened its land border to vaccinated Americans as of August 9, 2021.
The announcement of continued Canada-U.S. Land border restrictions comes just as the United States announced it would ease travel restrictions for fully vaccinated international air travelers (including travelers from countries like UK, China and India) in early November. “International travel is essential for connecting families and friends, for fueling businesses large and small, for promoting the open exchange of ideas and culture,” Zients said of plans to lift restrictions on travelers. international fully vaccinated. “That is why, with science and public health as a guide, we have developed a new international air transportation system that both improves the safety of Americans here at home and improves the safety of international air travel.”
There has been a lot of anger on both sides of the border over the continued ban.
New York congressman Brian Higgins released a statement saying that “the reopening of Canada’s border to the Americans was a step forward in our struggle to reconnect with Canadian neighbors, but we need action on the American side. The continued closure of the US land border to vaccinated Canadians is completely unnecessary and unexplained. ”
Higgins went on to say, “The continued closure of the US border to vaccinated Canadians is totally unnecessary and unexplained. “It is good news that the White House is making progress in reciprocating international public health measures to protect air travelers. Yet it is inexplicable that no announcement on easing travel restrictions at land entry points is made today, as the livelihoods of communities across the northern border depend on cross-border trade. . “Canada’s unilateral action to allow Americans to cross the border starting in August demonstrated what we already knew: vaccines were the turning point that made it possible to reopen the border. This is substantial progress in our struggle to reconnect with our Canadian neighbors, but we must act on the American side. Canada has successfully opened its land crossings and the United States should act today to do the same.“
When the ban was first extended to Sept. 21, US Travel Association executive vice president of public affairs and policy Tori Emerson Barnes said in a statement that “travel restrictions no longer protect us from the virus – vaccines do, “said the director of the US Travel Association. Vice President of Public Affairs and Policy Tori Emerson Barnes. “Each day that our land borders remain closed delays the economic and employment recovery in the United States, causing greater damage to the millions of people whose livelihoods depend on travel and tourism… For each month, the status quo quo continues at the Canadian border, the # 1 US source market. of inbound arrivals, the United States is losing $ 1.5 billion in potential travel exports, leaving countless U.S. businesses vulnerable. “
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