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CBP’s Carrier Liaison Program announced the rescission, effective 12:01 (ET), May 12, 2023, of the COVID-19 vaccination requirement for all airline or other aircraft passengers arriving in the United States from any foreign country. In other vaccine news, CDC provided updated COVID-19 vaccine guidance to civil surgeons performing the vaccination portion of the medical examination for those seeking adjustment of status.

Any questions concerning the scope or implementation of this guidance should be directed
to the appropriate Regional Carrier Liaison Group or other designated CBP official for
adjudication prior to aircraft departure.

What Does It Mean?

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has recently made a noteworthy policy change by eliminating the requirement for air passengers from any country to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination upon entry into the United States. This decision marks a departure from previous travel restrictions and has significant implications for international travelers.

A Policy Reversal and Implementation

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, countries across the globe have implemented various measures to contain the spread of the virus, including travel restrictions, quarantine protocols, and vaccination requirements. The requirement of proof of vaccination for international travelers became common practice in many nations, including the United States. However, the recent announcement by CBP signifies a reversal in this policy.

As of May 12, 2023, the CBP has removed the mandate for air passengers from all countries to present proof of COVID-19 vaccination when arriving in the United States. This policy change means that individuals will no longer be required to provide documentation of their vaccination status as a condition for entry.

Implications for International Travelers

The removal of the proof of vaccination requirement has several implications for international travelers. Firstly, it eliminates a significant obstacle for individuals who have not received a COVID-19 vaccine or are unable to provide proof of vaccination. This change opens up travel opportunities for those who were previously restricted from entering the United States based on vaccination status.

Furthermore, this policy shift is likely to simplify the travel process for visitors from any country, potentially boosting tourism and business travel. The removal of vaccination proof requirements may encourage individuals who were hesitant to travel due to these constraints to reconsider their plans.

Moving Forward

The CBP’s decision to no longer require proof of COVID-19 vaccination for air passengers from any country reflects the evolving landscape of the pandemic. As vaccination rates increase and countries adapt to changing circumstances, travel policies are being reevaluated.

While this change may be met with differing opinions, it underscores the importance of ongoing vigilance and adherence to public health guidelines. Vaccination remains a powerful tool in the fight against COVID-19, and individuals are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated to protect themselves and others.


Nadine Heitz

Nadine Heitz is an immigration attorney in Lake Worth, Florida where she helps her clients obtain legal status in the United States. Book your consultation with her to find out how to solve your immigration issues and achieve your desired goals.