How Can I Continue to Fly to My Home Country During the Coronavirus / COVID-19 Travel Ban?

Although it appears that all international travel has been closed during the Coronavirus / COVID-19 crisis, there are still international flights to and from certain international airports designated by the Department of Homeland Security. Those airports include the following:

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

Since there are a very limited number of international flights available, it is very important to reserve a seat on a flight while they are available. Although it is possible to apply for the extension of visitor B visa status, visitors to the ESTA Visa Waiver Program cannot extend their status unless the Customs and Border Protection Service approves a 30-day emergency extension called “Departure Satisfactory “. I spoke to a CBP official at our local district office in Tampa, Florida, and he told me that, for now, they are not approving satisfactory departure extensions because visitors can still make arrangements to fly home from the designated airports mentioned above. . Thus,

Failure to leave before the expiration of your stay under the ESTA / Visa Waiver Program will result in the automatic termination of the ability to visit the US. under that program. The person will then have to apply for a tourist visa at the US consulate or embassy. in your home country, and your application is likely to be denied, as the consular officer will likely conclude that the person could have left before the expiration date if they had conducted the proper investigation and found a solution to leave the U.S. USA on time. Please note that you do not need to fly directly to your home country, as it is sufficient for you to leave the United States before your authorized stay in the United States expires. So it is important to investigate if there is a travel ban in the third country, if there are still flights from the third country to your home country or to a nearby country from which you can find transportation to your home, what are the requirements to enter the third country and whether you will be required to go directly to mandatory quarantine. The end result is that a quick and thorough investigation is essential to plan the trip back home.

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