The Alliance welcomes the news that, starting November 8, the United States will lift the travel ban imposed on 33 nations and admit fully vaccinated foreign air travelers.
This is a critical step towards reinvigorating international exchange. The Alliance urges the Administration to take two additional steps. First, it should ensure that U.S. embassies in travel-banned countries are processing visas immediately. Doing so now will be critical for many program sponsors and hosts who are working to bring exchange visitors to the United States soon after the bans are lifted.
Second, the Administration should develop vaccination exemptions for exchange visitors from countries where vaccines are not routinely available. For these visitors, the Administration should extend the current practice of requiring a negative test and a vaccination within a defined period after entry. Additionally, the Administration should exempt exchange visa holders who will receive the vaccine through their academic institution in the United States.