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ABC-7 Xtra examines the border re-opening: What travelers can expect & the impact on El Paso’s economy

EL PASO, Texas -- On Monday at 12:01 a.m., land ports of entry, or bridges, will be re-opening to non-essential travelers after they have been closed for more than 20 months.

Businesses along the Mexico border have been feeling the impact with fewer dollars flowing during the pandemic - and loved ones have been kept apart from each other for around more than a year.

ABC-7 Xtra Sunday edition will try to offer viewers as much information as possible on what Customs and Border Protection want people to know before crossing into the U.S.

The CBP says travelers should expect longer wait times, even as the agency is working to add additional personnel to handle the influx of traffic.

CBP also says they will require proof of vaccination to cross. U.S. citizens and residents are not required to show proof of vaccinations, but officers are asking foreign nationals to bring that proof when they cross.

Travelers will be allowed to show a digital copy of their vaccination card and any documentation that is in Spanish. Also, un-vaccinated minors will be allowed into the U.S. if they're accompanied by a fully vaccinated adult.

Seven different Covid-19 vaccines will be accepted - the three approved by the FDA and the four others endorsed by the World Health Organization. The shots include Moderna, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Astrazeneca, Covishiled, Sinopharm and Sinovac.

ABC-7 Xtra host Saul Saenz talks to the city of El Paso's international bridges director to see what the city is doing to provide CBP with the necessary help that agency needs.

He also talks to El Paso business expert Tanny Berg to see what impact re-opening ports of entry to non-U.S. citizens will have on the Borderland economy.

The answer comes Sunday night on ABC-7 Xtra at 10:35 p.m.

Saul Saenz

El Paso native Saul Saenz is a veteran reporter who also hosts ABC-7 Extra.

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