The U.S has announced plans to extend the current land border restrictions for another month, expiring one minute before midnight on August 21.
This comes just days after the news announced by the Canadian government, that fully vaccinated Americans can enter Canada from August 9.
The decision a surprise to many, when considering a lot of the pressure to re-open the border was coming from our southern neighbours.
The official word from the U.S.
A notice posted to the U.S. Federal Register acknowledged the progress made with vaccination rates across the board. However, it is still believed that opening the land-border to non-essential travel is still too much of a risk.
“Given the outbreak and continued transmission and spread of COVID-19 within the United States and globally, the Secretary has determined that the risk of continued transmission and spread of the virus associated with COVID-19 between the United States and Canada poses an ongoing ‘specific threat to human life or national interests,” said the U.S. government update.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) cast little further light over the decision.
“To decrease the spread of COVID-19, including the Delta variant, the United States is extending restrictions on non-essential travel at our land and ferry crossings with Canada and Mexico through August 21, while ensuring the continued flow of essential trade and travel,” wrote DHS spokesperson Angelo Fernández Hernández.
“DHS is in constant contact with Canadian and Mexican counterparts to identify the conditions under which restrictions may be eased safely and sustainably.”
Trudeau on the U.S. border
Speaking on Tuesday Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said it is not up to Canada to “dictate” how and when the U.S. decides to reopen the land border.
“I think every country should and does set its own border policies. We have been working with the United States to keep them informed to make sure that as much as possible our choices are aligned, but you will have seen, everyone will have seen that our countries took different approaches certainly during the beginning of the pandemic,” he said.
There is plenty of expectation that the latest extension will be the final one. But, we must wait to see how the Delta variant develops before moving forward.
If you do have any questions about the complexities of COVID travel, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our wonderfully experienced travel agents.