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Protecting Air Travelers and the American Public

Protecting Air Travelers and the American Public

In order to help prevent the spread of travel-related cases of coronavirus in the United States, DHS Acting Secretary Chad F. Wolf issued a Notice of Arrival Restrictions on March 13 outlining the process for American citizens, legal permanent residents, and their immediate families who are returning home after recently visiting certain European countries (listed below), China, and Iran. On May 25, 2020, these restrictions were expanded to Brazil. Effective for flights taking off at 11:59 PM EDT on Tuesday, May 26, 2020, Americans returning from all restricted countries will now be required to travel through the following 15 airports:

  • Boston-Logan International Airport (BOS), Massachusetts
  • Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD), Illinois
  • Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), Texas
  • Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW), Michigan
  • Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), Hawaii
  • Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL), Florida
  • George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH), Texas
  • Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL), Georgia
  • John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), New York
  • Los Angeles International Airport, (LAX), California
  • Miami International Airport (MIA), Florida
  • Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), New Jersey
  • San Francisco International Airport (SFO), California
  • Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA), Washington
  • Washington-Dulles International Airport (IAD), Virginia

Upon arrival, travelers will proceed to standard customs processing. They will then continue to enhanced entry screening where the passenger will be asked about their medical history, current condition, and asked for contact information for local health authorities. Passengers will then be given written guidance about COVID-19 and directed to their final destination, and immediately home-quarantine in accordance with CDC best practices.

“While the overall risk of serious infection from the coronavirus to the general public remains low at this time, the Trump administration is taking these aggressive measures to keep the risk low, requiring all Americans returning from affected areas in Europe, China, Iran and Brazil to be funneled through 15 airports for screening upon their return to the U.S.,” said Acting Secretary Wolf. “To minimize disruptions to travelers, TSA, CBP, and air carriers are working to identify qualifying passengers before their scheduled flights. These passengers will be rerouted to one of the 15 airports by their airline at no cost to them.”

Wolf continued: “I understand this new process will be disruptive to some travelers, however this action is needed to protect the general public from further exposure and spread of the coronavirus. Once back in the U.S. it is imperative that individuals honor self-quarantine directives to help protect their loved-ones and communities.”

President Trump determined that the potential for widespread transmission of the coronavirus by infected individuals seeking to enter the United States threatens the security of the homeland. Therefore, the Department is taking action in furtherance of the public health interests advanced by the March 11th presidential proclamation which suspends entry to nearly all foreign nationals who have been in certain European countries, China and Iran at any point during the 14 days prior to their scheduled travel to the U.S. On May 25, 2020, these restrictions were expanded to Brazil.

These European countries include: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the U.K. This Presidential Proclamation does not apply to U.S. citizens, legal permanent residents, nor their family members under the age of 21, and other individuals who are identified in the proclamation. Nor does it apply to cargo and maritime shipping.

TSA Hard at Work

In this video, Acting Secretary Chad Wolf visits frontline Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employees, thanking them for risking their own health and safety to protect our airways throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

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Additional Information

Last Published Date: June 26, 2020

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