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Key Points

  • Due to COVID-19, North American border closures are extended through September 21, 2021
  • The land border closures are still in effect, even though Canada has eased some restrictions for fully vaccinated US travelers
  • The border closures affect train, boat, and passenger ferry travel only, but not air travel
  • Essential travel only is permitted across US-Canada and US-Mexico borders at this time


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

What are the Changes?

Even though Canada has started to ease some restrictions for vaccinated US travelers, 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 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.

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.

Starting Sept. 7, 2021, the Canadian government will further ease its travel restrictions to allow vaccinated travelers from the US into Canada for select non-essential travel reasons. The Canadian government first started to relax its travel restrictions on Aug. 9, 2021.

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