U.S. Extends Land Border Closure With Canada, Mexico Until Oct. 21

The border closure has been extended on a monthly basis.

The United States has extended its land border closure with Canada and Mexico for non-essential travel until at least Oct. 21, according to White House officials.

The closure, which has been in place since March 2020, and has been extended on a monthly basis since, comes as Canada opened its borders to fully vaccinated U.S. tourists in August, allowing them to arrive by both land and air.

Travelers heading north must be vaccinated at least two weeks before their trip, get tested before going, and upload their documents to the ArriveCAN app or website. Similarly, Mexico welcomes U.S. tourists who fly there.

The closure does not apply to U.S. citizens coming back into the country after traveling abroad to Mexico or Canada.

"We don't have any updates or predictions at this point in time. But, obviously, we're continuing to consider... how we can return to a place of travel and people being able to move from country to country, including at our land borders," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters in a briefing on Monday. "But I don't have any prediction of that at this point."

US-Canada border
by JASON REDMOND/AFP via Getty Images

Both Mexico and Canada are currently classified as "Level 3" destinations by both the State Department and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which warns of "high" levels of COVID-19 risk there.

Canada, however, has surpassed the U.S. when it comes to vaccinations. In Canada, 74.44% of residents have received at least one dose of a vaccine, and 68.72% are fully vaccinated, according to the government. In the U.S., only 63.9% of people have received at least one dose and 54.7% are fully vaccinated, according to the CDC.

In Mexico, only about 37.3% of people are fully vaccinated, according to Reuters.

The decision to keep the land borders closed to non-essential travel also comes as the U.S. prepares to open its borders to vaccinated tourists from the United Kingdom and European Union in November.

Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.

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