Good News – Traveling to the U.S. Just Became (Slightly) Easier!
On Monday, September 14th, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) handed down some truly promising news relating to air travel and general travel to the U.S.: effective immediately, restrictions on arrival destinations are terminated, thus allowing airlines to begin more regular flights and flight destinations.
For background, along with the travel bans from many areas of the globe, including China, the United Kingdom, and countries in the Schengen Area, any arriving flights from such areas were directed to a few U.S. airports to limit arrival options for containment and public health screening purposes. While larger airports in New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, and others were allowed to receive flights from restricted overseas areas, cities such as Charlotte could not.
CBP’s September 14th action will end these restrictions, which is a positive sign that international travel may be moving in the direction of more normalized operation.
Unfortunately, the related travel bans from the above areas and others, remain in full force and effect. This means that while an individual present in a Schengen Area country can now fly directly to any U.S. city with a direct flight, he or she must either (i) “quarantine” for 14 days in an area not subject to U.S. travel bans, or (ii) seek and receive approval for a national interest exemption (NIE) waiver.
If you have questions about how to obtain an NIE waiver, please contact our firm.
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