UPDATED NEWS ALERT: New Travel Ban Ended In Response to Omicron Variant - (01/04/22)
1/4/21 Update: Effective midnight on December 31, 2021 the Biden/Harris administration ended restrictions imposed in November to combat the spread of the Omicron variant, banning air travel from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi.
Beginning November 29, 2021, the Biden Administration has announced a new travel ban restricting air travel from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi. In announcing the omicron variant, the World Health Organization has labeled it a “variant of concern,” which has prompted several regions and countries, such as the European Union, Britain, and Japan to restrict air travel from southern Africa.
The suspension of entry applies to immigrants or nonimmigrants, with some exceptions, who were physically present in the eight named countries during the 14-day period preceding attempted entry into the United States. Like previous COVID-19 travel bans, the restrictions do not apply to American citizens, lawful permanent residents, certain immediate family members of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents, noncitizens who are members of the U.S. Armed Forces, and more. Noncitizens whose entry would be “in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their designees” are also exempt from this travel ban.
At present, this is the only active U.S. COVID-19 air travel restriction in place, but please continue to check in as more information about the variant and its impact on international travel become available.