Photo courtesy Texas A&M

City Officials Prepare for Border to Reopen for Non-Essential Trave

The City of El Paso is prepared for the Texas-Mexico border to reopen, Monday, November 8, 2021, for non-essential travelers for the first time since March 2020.

The Texas-Mexico border was closed for 20 months to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, but now with the abundance of the COVID-19 vaccine and a reduction of positive cases, the White House moved away from the country-by-country restrictions.

Individuals crossing the border must adhere to the following requirements when crossing the border into the US at all ports of entry:

  • present proof of COVID-19 vaccination as outlined on the CDC website; and,
  • verbally attest to their non-essential travel and COVID-19 vaccination status.

The CDC has determined that for purposes of travel to the United States, vaccines accepted will include current FDA approved or authorized vaccines and World Health Organization (WHO) emergency use listed vaccines. To date, there are currently seven vaccines that meet the CDC’s requirements, including:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech
  • Moderna
  • Johnson and Johnson
  • Oxford–AstraZeneca
  • Sinopharm BIBP
  • Sinovac
  • Covishield

Individuals 18 years of age and those engaged in essential travel will not be required to be vaccinated at this time; however, beginning in January 2022, all travelers—whether for essential or non-essential reasons—must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and provide proof of vaccination.


“In anticipation of the reopening of the border we have consistently been in communication with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to be fully prepared for the increase in crossings. We are also in close coordination with our Police Department to ensure that we have enhanced traffic control plans to better manage congestion near the ports of entry,” said David Coronado, Managing Director of International Bridges and Economic Development.

“We strive to keep our community safe and will ensure to have extra CBP officers so that the agency can have additional lanes open during peak and help stabilize wait times as we enter into this new phased reopening.”

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