(November 15, 2021)
Event: On October 25, President Biden announced the United States will adopt a global air travel policy. This policy prioritizes public health, protecting U.S. citizens and residents as well as those who come to visit us. Effective November 8 all non-citizen, nonimmigrant (not a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, lawful permanent resident, or traveling to the United States on an immigrant visa)airline passengers traveling to the United States, must demonstrate proof of vaccination as defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Order prior to boarding a U.S. bound aircraft. More details regarding what constitutes full vaccination are available on this page of the CDC website.
Fully vaccinated travelers will continue to be required to show a pre-departure negative test taken within three (3) days of travel to the United States prior to boarding. This applies to all travelers – U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents (LPRs), and foreign nationals. To further strengthen protections, unvaccinated travelers – whether U.S. citizens, LPRs, or the small number of excepted unvaccinated foreign nationals – will now need to test within one (1) day of departure. Additional information may be found on CDC’s website.
Passengers will need to show their vaccination status, and airlines will need to:
- Match the name and date of birth to confirm the passenger is the same person reflected on the proof of vaccination.
- Determine that the record was issued by an official source (e.g., public health agency, government agency) in the country where the vaccine was given.
- Review the essential information for determining if the passenger meets CDC’s definition for fully vaccinated such as vaccine product, number of vaccine doses received, date(s) of administration, site (e.g., vaccination clinic, healthcare facility) of vaccination.
Airlines must deny boarding to passengers who do not meet these requirements or those who test positive for COVID-19.
For additional information or if you have specific questions, please contact your airline and visit the CDC’s website.
NOTE: U.S. citizens in countries where adequate COVID-19 testing is not available or who may not be able to satisfy the requirements, should be prepared to remain in place until such time as they can meet the requirements.
Actions to Take:
- Monitor the CDC website for the latest guidance regarding testing requirements.
- Check with your air carriers or travel representative prior to departure for the United States.
- Check COVID-19 Country Specific Information pages for updated information on COVID-19 related to the availability of testing.
- Visit travel.state.gov to view individual Travel Advisories for the most urgent threats to safety and security.
- Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the United States.
- Click here for our Travel to the U.S. FAQs.
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- Phone number +229 2136 7500
- Email Address ACSCotonou@state.gov
- State Department – Consular Affairs 888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444
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