As Flytrippers told you before, there are going to be major changes to the United States’ entry rules on November 8. The government has just officialized all the details of the changes, at least for entry by air. Including for kids (and all minors in fact).
Here is what has been announced by the destination that is #1 for Canadian travelers (based on the data).
The United States’ new entry rules
First, we have a simple step-by-step guide on how to travel to the United States for those who prefer that format and don’t care about what is actually changing.
Otherwise, here’s what we already knew, specifically about the upcoming changes to enter the United States:
- Effective Monday, November 8
- The land border is reopening
- Vaccination required (by land or by air)
- Mixed vaccines accepted (AstraZeneca too)
- Entry restrictions for countries currently banned will be lifted
- Pre-departure rapid antigen test still required by air (as low as $40)
- You have the full 3 calendar days before the day of the flight (not just 72 hours)
- Test not required by land apparently (not 100% confirmed yet)
- As always, the same rules apply for transits in the USA
Here is what is new from yesterday’s announcement:
- Minimum of 14 days after the last required dose
- Any proof of vaccination from “an official source” is accepted
- No vaccination requirement for all minors
- All those under 18 years of age are considered minors
- Unvaccinated minors traveling alone* must be tested the day before the flight
*The requirement to test the day before (instead of in the 3 days before) also applies to children accompanied by non-vaccinated parents and to non-vaccinated adults. But among adults, only Americans are allowed to enter the USA without being vaccinated (just as Canadians are allowed to enter Canada without being vaccinated).
Yesterday’s announcement was for air travel only, so we’re still waiting for it to be 100% confirmed officially by the government to be sure that the pre-departure testing requirement is really still just for air travel (but it’s almost certain).
Let’s look at each item briefly.
Minimum of 14 days after the last required dose
This isn’t too surprising, most countries require 14 days too. But not all! Always check, as with all rules. Some require 28 days. Each country makes its own rules and nothing is harmonized, this is very important and that’s why we keep repeating it.
Canada, by the way, also requires 14 days after the last dose for its entry rules.
However, we are still waiting for confirmation that the definition of “fully vaccinated” is the same for the upcoming new requirement (being vaccinated to board any plane in a Canadian airport) because it is a completely separate rule. Many have trouble understanding that all the rules are separate, so I’ll repeat that too—sorry for those who already know.
That new requirement comes into effect on the 30th, in 4 days. And the Canadian government still hasn’t provided any logistical details. They’re still really on top of things it seems… as has been the case all along basically.
Any proof of vaccination from “an official source” is accepted
It’s simple, as is the case in most countries at this point, any official proof of vaccination will do. But that’s not true everywhere… it depends on the country!
Canada just launched its new official vaccination passport for travel last week, which is actually the topic of our article for tomorrow. With all the details you need to know. Stay tuned.
No vaccination requirement for all minors
The good news is that the USA is taking the most permissive approach. No traveler under the age of 18 needs to be vaccinated to enter, even if they are old enough to be vaccinated. It’s a lot simpler that way.
This is definitely not Canada’s approach in terms of entry rules. Canada has removed the quarantine for everyone under 12, since they can’t be vaccinated (but they still can’t go to school or daycare for 14 days) but requires children who can be vaccinated (over 12) to be vaccinated in order to be exempted from the mandatory 14-day quarantine.
Again, the requirement to board a plane in a Canadian airport is separate and of course, children under 12 will be allowed to board since they cannot be vaccinated.
In short, it was obvious that children under 12 would be allowed to enter the United States, but the winners now are 12 to 18-year-olds who can also enter without being vaccinated.
To show that everything always varies, as much as the USA is more permissive for children in terms of entry… only kids under 2 years old are exempt from their pre-departure test requirement (while kids under 5 years old are exempted by Canada).
Want to get all the updates on pandemic travel?
The United States has announced that all minors are exempt from the vaccination requirement, that any proof of vaccination from an official source will be accepted, and that the last required dose must be received at least 14 days prior to entry.
What do you want to know about the USA’s vaccine rules? Tell us in the comments below.
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