Latest News on COVID-19 and J-1 Exchange Visitor Program travel restrictions

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Updated January 4, 2022

Starting on December 6, international air travelers aged two and older, regardless of nationality or vaccination status, are required to show documentation of a negative viral test result taken within one day of the flight’s departure to the United States before boarding. Visit the State Department website to learn more about the New Requirements for Air Travelers to the U.S.


On October 25, President Biden announced a Presidential Proclamation titled “A Proclamation on Advancing the Safe Resumption of Global Travel During the COVID-19 Pandemic.” This proclamation, which took effect at 12:01 am Eastern Standard Time on November 8, 2021, and ended the travel restrictions as they relate to the suspension of entry into the United States of persons physically present in Brazil, China, India, Iran, Ireland, the Schengen Area, South Africa, and the United Kingdom.

In place of these restrictions, the President announced a global vaccination requirement for all adult foreign national travelers. Starting November 8, non-citizen, non-immigrant air travelers to the United States (age 18 or older at the time of travel) are required to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination status before boarding an airplane to fly to the U.S. Please note that this announcement does not necessarily mean that local U.S. Embassies or Consulates will be able to immediately schedule all affected applicants for visa interviews.

Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on accepted COVID-19 vaccines and acceptable proof of COVID-19 vaccination required to travel to the United States can be found here. If you have any questions please read through these Frequently Asked Questions on COVID-19 Vaccinations and Testing for International Travel from the CDC.

We encourage you to contact us by program, and to keep in contact with the U.S. Embassy in your home country to monitor updates to their visa services protocols and appointments.

Latest News on InterExchange Programs

Applications for the 2022 summer are now open, although several embassies continue to operate at a limited capacity. If you have any questions about participating in the Camp USA program for the 2022 summer, please email campusa@interexchange.org.

Read the Career Training COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

For any questions or concerns regarding a program already in progress in the U.S.

Please contact our Participant Services Coordinator, Abigail Graszl, at +1-917-305-5486 or via agraszl@interexchange.org.

For all other inquiries

We can be reached during business hours (M - F, 9:30 am - 5:30 pm EDT) at +1-888-621-1202, training@interexchange.org, or through the chat icon at the bottom right-hand corner of our website.

Current J-1 Visa Exchange Visitors in the U.S.

Current participants in the U.S. who travel out of the country are subject to the global vaccination requirement for all adult foreign national travelers.

Please be aware that the decision to admit a traveler to the United States rests with the Department of Homeland Security / U.S. Customs and Border Protection and we are unable to advise visa holders on whether they will be granted admission.

Please contact workabroad@interexchange.org if you have any doubts regarding the entry requirements for your destination, and refer to the Department of State country-specific information.

Travel medical insurance is required for your program. Be sure you know the coverage inclusions pertaining to COVID-19, for example treatment or mandatory quarantine.

Take extra care to familiarize yourself with your airline’s cancellation policies. You may wish to purchase trip cancellation insurance.

U.S. citizens currently on a program abroad

Please reach out to your travel medical insurance provider and make sure you understand if coverage is offered for COVID-19. If you are considering traveling during your program and have questions please email workabroad@interexchange.org or your in-country agency.

While in the country, please ensure you adhere to all local directives and refer to the U.S. Department of State resource page.

Travel Information

We are unable to provide a specific date for when each mission will resume specific visa services, or when each mission will return to processing at pre-pandemic workload levels. Check each U.S. Embassy or Consulate’s website for information regarding operating status and which services it is currently offering.

Follow CDC guidance if traveling within the U.S.

Participants planning to travel outside of the U.S. during or after the program should visit the U.S. Department of State’s Travel Advisories.

Additional Information

Our New York City Staff are working remotely in line with recommendations from the Governor’s and Mayor’s office. However, we are available for all normal business operations and you can reach us for help and assistance.

  • Our program participants are covered by accident and sickness insurance during their program. We encourage them to contact a doctor, urgent care facility or hospital if they experience any flu-like symptoms (fever, coughing, chills, etc.).
  • Participants within the U.S. can find their accident and sickness insurance information within InterExchange online resources. If you are a U.S. citizen participating in an outbound program, please consult your plan information.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a face mask.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when unable to practice social distancing.
  • Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
  • The cloth face cover is meant to protect other people in case you are infected. CDC guidance should be followed even if you are vaccinated.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.

More information about the Coronavirus can be found at the U.S Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization.

InterExchange Staff

InterExchange is proud to have an experienced team that is dedicated to international cultural exchange. We come from a variety of backgrounds, but nearly every member of our New York City-based staff has extensive experience traveling, working, or living abroad.