By Rashard Rose, CNN
The United States has extended Covid-19 restrictions on non-essential travel at land and ferry crossings with Canada and Mexico until July 21, according to a tweet from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Sunday.
“To reduce the spread of #COVID19, the United States is extending restrictions on non-essential travel at our land and ferry crossings with Canada and Mexico through July 21, while ensuring access for essential trade & travel,” DHS wrote.
“DHS also notes positive developments in recent weeks and is participating with other US agencies in the White House’s expert working groups with Canada and Mexico to identify the conditions under which restrictions may be eased safely and sustainably.”
In March 2020, the US and Canada mutually agreed to shut down the border to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
Canada continues stringent restrictions
On Friday, Canadian Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Bill Blair announced that Canada had extended its Covid-19 restrictions on non-essential international and US travel until July 21.
Addressing media after the announcement, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau acknowledged that the extension of the travel restrictions may be “frustrating” for many people but that his goal is to keep Canadians safe.
“We’re not out of this pandemic yet. We have to hit our targets of 75% vaccinated with the first dose, at least 20% vaccinated with the second dose before we can start loosening things up because even a fully vaccinated individual can pass on Covid-19 to someone who is not vaccinated,” Trudeau said,
Blair said the government will soon announce how it plans to handle travel among those who are fully vaccinated.
Canada is largely off-limits to US travelers. Tourism, leisure and casual visits are all forbidden. Some exceptions exist for family members, foreign workers and international students.
Those arriving by air are required to quarantine for three nights in a government-authorized hotel in addition to the rest of the testing and quarantine requirements.
Travel to Mexico
Mexico allows US travelers by air. There’s no need for a negative PCR test for Covid-19, and no quarantine required. Most resorts, however, ask guests to fill out health questionnaires.
On June 7, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lowered Mexico’s advisory rating from “very high” risk level 4 to “high” risk level 3. The CDC advises travelers to be fully vaccinated before traveling to Mexico.