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Key Points

  • The US government will extend North American land border closures through October 21, 2021
  • An existing land border closure that was initiated in March 2020 will continue due to COVID-19
  • Aside from the new date, all other provisions of the North American border closures will remain the same
  • The border closures apply to train, boat, passenger ferry, and other land travel only, and air travel will not be subject to the closure
  • Only essential travel to Canada is permitted at this time
  • Some travel restrictions were lifted in August and September for fully vaccinated travelers


Due to ongoing COVID-19 concerns, the US government will extend existing US-Mexico and US-Canada land border closures through October 21, 2021.

What are the Changes?

Although Canada eased some restrictions for vaccinated US travelers over the summer, North American land borders will remain closed for another month. Aside from the extended closure, all other provisions of the existing border closure will stay the same. The border closures apply to train, boat and passenger ferry, and other land travel only. Air travel is not affected.

Travel is restricted to essential purposes only at this time, which includes:

  • US citizens and permanent residents traveling home
  • People traveling across borders for healthcare, employment, or education
  • Individuals involved in cross-border trade

Limited additional exceptions may be permitted in certain circumstances. Travel for tourism and recreational reasons is prohibited.

On August 9, 2021, the Canadian government eased some travel restrictions to allow vaccinated travelers from the US into Canada for select non-essential travel reasons. The Canadian government further relaxed travel restrictions on September 7, 2021.

Looking Ahead

US-Mexico and US-Canada land borders have been closed since March 2020. Border closures have been extended on a monthly basis since the COVID-19 pandemic began. They may be continued as needed based on epidemiological conditions.

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