As of November 8, 2021, the travel bans have been lifted and international travel has resumed. All J-1 exchange visitor applicants (age 18 or older at the time of travel) will be required to show proof of vaccination prior to arrival in the United States, subject to limited exceptions. Any vaccine approved by the World Health Organization is accepted.
A list of countries where vaccines are not readily available has been established. Any potential nonimmigrant traveler (including J-1) from those countries will be able to enter the US and get vaccinated after arrival. More information.
There is a hopeful feeling as we look forward to J-1 participants in the summer of 2022. Camp directors are being encouraged to choose applicants early to avoid any unforeseen visa delays due to COVID-19 or other world situations and to be open to participants from diverse countries. They are also being encouraged to communicate early and often with their placements to be sure expectations are clearly outlined and understood from both sides — camp and participant.
BridgeUSA J-1 Visa Toolkit
This toolkit — developed with help from ACA Government Relations Committee — provides useful information and best practices to help camps navigate the upcoming 2022 season.
Staffing Summit Session Recording
At the 2021 Staffing Summit, J-1 camp sponsors reflected on current challenges and opportunities with the BridgeUSA (J-1) camp cultural exchange programs — both Camp Counselor and Summer Work Travel. You can watch this recording to see what we learned from 2021 and the current landscape for 2022. Sponsors share Top 10 Helpful Hints for successful recruiting, training, and support.
Helpful Hints for Recruiting, Hiring and Retaining International Staff at Camp