I'm having trouble finding the info I need, so I'm hoping someone here can help!

I'm a US citizen currently in Canada, planning to return to the US by land (as in, driving across a border) sometime during the next month or so. There is a lot of information about requirements for negative tests and quarantines for international travelers by air, but it's not clear whether these apply to land travel, as well.

If I travel into the US from Canada by land, will I need proof of a negative covid test before I can drive through the border?


1 Answer 1


According to the CDC on 2021-01-24, the requirement that air travelers to the US have a COVID test before arriving does not apply to land travelers.

On January 12, 2021, CDC issued an Order requiring all air passengers arriving to the US from a foreign country to get tested no more than 3 days before their flight departs and to present the negative result or documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 to the airline before boarding the flight. Air passengers will also be required to confirm that the information they present is true in the form of an attestation.


Does this Order apply to land border crossings?

No, the requirements of this Order only apply to air travel into the US.

Note, however, that you may be subject to quarantine restrictions upon your arrival, and that these restrictions may be less stringent depending on whether you have been tested recently before arrival. These restrictions vary at the state level, so this issue can't be addressed without knowing your final destination in the US. I recommend searching for "[state] travelers COVID quarantine" to find further information. (Or you could edit your question, and/or ask another question on this site.)

  • 1
    Or do the tests regardless whether they are required, just for your own piece of mind.
    – Willeke
    Commented Jan 24, 2021 at 19:54
  • @Willeke Why should OP unnecessarily chuff exorbitant amounts of cash down the toilet? We have no idea about their financial status. As for me, any country requiring a negative test (especially if not accepting Antigen), I regard as de facto closed for me due to the costs
    – Crazydre
    Commented Jan 24, 2021 at 20:31
  • If you can not afford the test or think they are not worth the money I will not make you travel. But where the test are or might be required it is better to be tested. If you can stay home that is always the better option.
    – Willeke
    Commented Jan 24, 2021 at 21:06
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    @Crazydre There is no evidence for a belief that the US has taken measures sufficient to contain the pandemic. Going slightly beyond the bare minimum is prudent for anybody who must travel but wants to protect themself and the communities they will travel to.
    – mlc
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 0:36
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    @Crazydre: many states/counties offer free testing. Even if you have to pay it's typically not that expensive. If you have money to travel, you have money to test. 400,000+ people already have died in the US alone. Everyone doing their part and a little more will help save many, many lives in the coming months
    – Hilmar
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 13:46

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