If You Got This Vaccine, You're Barred From Entering the U.S., Starting Today

New requirements are affecting millions of travelers who were previously allowed in.

Millions of people are now being allowed to enter the U.S. for the first time in nearly 18 months. In mid-October, the White House announced that it would soon be opening up the country's borders to fully vaccinated travelers, after having prohibited most non-U.S. citizens from 33 countries during the thick of the pandemic. As of Nov. 8, travelers from dozens of countries can enter the U.S. if they show proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test taken within three days of travel, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But not all fully vaccinated travelers are being permitted under the administration's new guidelines.

RELATED: Unvaccinated People Will Be Banned From Here, Starting Dec. 8.

The White House's new guidelines for entry into the U.S. prohibit most unvaccinated travelers unless they are a U.S. citizen, national, or lawful permanent resident, or fall under one of the exemption categories for non-citizen non-immigrants, which includes children under 18, members of the U.S. Armed Forces or their spouses or children, and people with documented medical contraindications to receiving a COVID vaccine.

But some non-citizens will be getting the "unvaccinated" treatment despite getting a COVID shot. Not all fully vaccinated travelers are permitted under the administration's new guidelines because not all vaccines are approved for entry into the U.S. According to the CDC, there are only eight vaccines that will be accepted as adequate proof of vaccination to enter the country: Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Covaxin, Covishield, Sinopharm, and Sinovac.

"Non-citizens who are non-immigrants and seeking to enter the United States by air are required to show proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States from a foreign country," the CDC states, noting that if you don't meet the requirements for approved vaccines, "you are not considered fully vaccinated" and will not be allowed to board a flight to the U.S. unless you meet the criteria for an exception.

The eight vaccines have all been authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the World Health Organization (WHO). But there are several widely used COVID vaccines that haven't yet garnered authorization from the WHO, like the Russian vaccine Sputnik V, the Chinese CanSico vaccine, or Cuban vaccines Abdala, Soberana 02, and Soberana Plus. Millions of people around the world who received one of these vaccines have now been left out of new entry requirements into the U.S.

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Some of these travelers were actually allowed in the U.S. before the new guidelines went into place on Nov. 8, The New York Times reported. According to the news outlet, Russia was not among the 33 countries included in the previous U.S. travel ban. But the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccine is not one of the eight now being accepted for entry to the U.S.—even though it's used in about 70 countries worldwide—which means many people who were allowed in the country before Nov. 8 will no longer be permitted to enter.

"I thought it's better to get Sputnik today than a Western vaccine at some uncertain future time," Budapest resident Aka Sipos, who received his second dose of Sputnik V in April, told the Los Angeles Times. "But I couldn't have known at that time that I wouldn't be able to travel with Sputnik."

Other travelers from countries that were not originally banned are concerned about their ability to travel to the U.S. now as well. Juan David Peláez, a traveler from Colombia, told The New York Times that he had been planning a family trip to the U.S. since February but recently switched his family's plane tickets to arrive on Nov. 7, a day before the new guidelines went into effect. Peláez, who is vaccinated with Moderna, told the news outlet he was worried that he would not be allowed in the U.S. as he has not yet received an official vaccine certification from the Colombian government.

The changing rules in the U.S. "affect a lot of people who would not have been affected in the past," Peláez said.

RELATED: Unvaccinated People Are Banned From Going Here, Starting Jan. 8.

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