The United States reopens its land and air borders Monday to foreign visitors fully vaccinated against Covid-19, ending 20 months of restrictions on travel from around the globe that separated families, hobbled tourism and strained diplomatic ties.
The ban, imposed by former president Donald Trump in early 2020 and upheld by his successor Joe Biden, has been widely criticized and become emblematic of the upheavals caused by the pandemic.
The restrictions were particularly unpopular in Europe and US neighbors Canada and Mexico.
In an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus, US borders were closed after March 2020 to travelers from large parts of the world, including the European Union, Britain and China, India and Brazil. Overland visitors from Mexico and Canada were also banned.
The months of restrictions affecting hundreds of millions of people helped fuel both personal and economic suffering brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.