The US/Canadian border has been closed for over a year to non-essential travel, but that could soon change for lots of Western New Yorkers.

Over the weekend, officials with the Canadian government announced that they are currently working on a plan that would reopen the US/Canadian border to all travelers.

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According to Bloomberg News, senior officials within Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's cabinet have begun talks with US officials on how to open the border between the two countries' safety during COVID-19.

The US/Canadian border is the longest international border in the world and having it shut down over the past year has cost each country around $16 billion dollars in revenue.

The biggest issue between the two countries is how to make sure people traveling back and forth are vaccinated. The Canadian government has been looking into electronic vaccine cards that you could show at the border to prove that you have been vaccinated against COVID-19. US officials are against the idea of using electronic cards.

Another issue is the number of people who can and have been vaccinated. The US is hoping that most people will be vaccinated by July, while Canadian officials think that their country won't be fully vaccinated by September or later. A third wave of COVID-19 has had a major impact in Canada.

The current closure mandate is set to expire this Friday, May 21st. If officials from both countries can't come to an agreement, that mandate will be extended further into Summer.

Currently, there are four bridges that US citizens can use to cross into Canada when the border reopens. The Peace Bride, The Lewiston-Queenston Bridge, Rainbow Bridge, and Whirlpool Rapids Bridge.

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