26 October 2021

Executive Order on Vaccine Requirements for Air Travel

On October 25, 2021, the White House issued a new Presidential Proclamation requiring non-citizen, temporary travelers who seek to enter the United States via air travel—for work or leisure—to provide proof of vaccination status. Additionally, unvaccinated U.S. citizens and other permanent immigrants will now be required to provide proof of a negative COVID test within one day, as opposed to three days, of air travel. The order will take effect November 8, 2021. The new requirement is expected to impact many non-immigrant workers who are now traveling to the United States via air.

The Executive Order contains a limited number of exceptions as outlined here:

  • There are a very limited set of exceptions from the vaccination requirement for foreign nationals. These include exceptions for children under 18, certain COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial participants, those with medical contraindications to the vaccines, those who need to travel for emergency or humanitarian reasons (with a US government-issued letter affirming the urgent need to travel), those who are traveling on non-tourist visas from countries with low-vaccine availability (as determined by the CDC), and other very narrow categories.
  • Those who receive an exception will generally be required to attest they will comply with applicable public health requirements, including, with very limited exceptions, a requirement that they be vaccinated in the U.S. if they intend to stay here for more than 60 days.

The Biden Administration has also indicated that a similar order may be coming in January for non-citizen, non-immigrant visitors entering by land crossing.

A copy of the order can be found here:

A fact sheet on the order can be found here:

Again, the new order will take effect on November 8, 2021.  If you have any questions, or are concerned about how this order might impact a worker or group of workers, please reach out to Hillary Scholten, or your Miller Johnson attorney for questions.