U.S. borders reopen after more than 18 months; families reunite

Peyton Renwick, Reporter

The United States has opened up its formerly closed borders to Mexico, China, Canada, India, and much of Europe, effective on Nov. 8.

After COVID-19 hit, the viral breakout impacted our daily lives for the worse. There were mass surges in hospitalizations, deaths, and quarantines. As a result, the United States’ Border Control decided to shut down travel to and from several other countries. Among some of these were borders to Mexico and Canada, which are now back open for nonessential travel. The border has been closed for over eighteen months, and people are desperate to go back to their normal lives once more. 

President Joe Biden is an avid supporter of the border reopening. In his proclamation signed on Oct. 25, he wrote about the need to reopen travel, albeit safely.

“It is in the interests of the United States to move away from country-by-country restrictions previously applied during the COVID-19 pandemic and to adopt an air travel policy that relies primarily on vaccination to advance the safe resumption of international air travel to the United States,” the proclamation read (The White House). 

Biden and his administration are trying to do all they can to safely open things up for travelers, but it has proven to be difficult. As a result, many requirements have been instated. 

If traveling by air, travelers will need proof of vaccination, as well as a negative COVID-19 test. That said, if coming from Mexico or Canada by land, only a passport and proof of vaccination is required (KHOU). 

A majority of the common people are happy that they can finally see their loved ones again. A majority of these people are either couples that were on the opposite side of the border, or family members that have been split. A story produced by Boston Globe says that a retired firefighter, Paul Campbell, was sixty-three years old and was separated from his German fiancé for over two years. This is, of course, not the only heartwarming reunion, as thousands of people are finally back together.