President Biden announces easing of border restrictions

By | September 21, 2021

As previously reported, IAAPA is a member of a national coalition of travel and tourism organizations, which, for more than a year and a half, have urged two administrations to pursue a science-based approach to managing our borders for international travel and workforce-related purposes. Today we have good news to report. The administration announced the easing of pandemic-related travel restrictions which will apply to all inbound international travelers. 

Starting in November – date to be determined – foreign nationals who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, including those enrolled in clinical trials for vaccines not yet been approved, will be able to travel to the United States without the quarantine requirement. To do so, a traveler will be required to show proof of a negative test within three days before their departure. Additionally, the CDC will require airlines to collect information on passengers to help with contact tracing. 

IAAPA will continue to work with the administration and our national partners to ensure this policy is implemented swiftly. 

Update on President Biden’s Vaccination Requirements
IAAPA will send a letter to President Biden this week laying out myriad operational and liability-related questions and concerns regarding a provision requiring all employers with over 100 employees to mandate vaccinations or weekly testing, and a provision calling on large venues to require proof of vaccination or negative test results from customers. We will also ask how employers will receive timely guidance and have questions answered.

While the administration has called on OSHA to release the associated rules within two weeks’ time, that may prove to be an impossible deadline given the complexity of the mandate. In other words, the rules could be released next week, in 3 months, or even next year. In the meantime, we expect to see legal complaints filed against the federal government challenging their constitutional authority and moves made by some state governments to tackle these complex matters on their own. 

Once the rules are released, they will become effective immediately in 28 states that do not currently have a state plan. The 22 states that do have a state plan have 30 days to adopt an equally protective policy, or they will be required to adopt the federal rules. The 60-day public comment period will also commence when they are released, and the permanent ruling will be published within 6 months.

IAAPA will remain fully engaged in all the above on your behalf and will let you know when more information becomes available.