On November 23, 2020, Office of the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) published in the Federal Register a notification of continuation of temporary travel restrictions at land ports of entry and ferries between the United States and Mexico from November 22 until December 21, 2020. For purposes of the temporary alteration in certain designated ports of entry operations authorized under 19 U.S.C. 1318(b)(1)(C) and (b)(2), travel through the land ports of entry and ferry terminals along the United States-Mexico border shall be limited to “essential travel.” At this time, this Notification does not apply to air, freight rail, or sea travel between the United States and Mexico, but does apply to passenger rail, passenger ferry travel, and pleasure boat travel between the United States and Mexico.

On the same date, a similar notification was published by DHS/CBP in the Federal Register that continues to temporarily limit the travel of individuals from Canada into the United States at land ports of entry and ferries along the United States-Canada border through December 21, 2020.

Given the definition of “essential travel” in each notification, the temporary alteration in land ports of entry operations should not interrupt legitimate trade between the two nations or disrupt critical supply chains that ensure food, fuel, medicine, and other critical materials reach individuals on both sides of the two borders. [See our October Update for the definitions of “essential travel” and other details for both notifications.]