After 16 months, reopening of U.S.-Canada border may come too late for hundreds of businesses

Summer travel may be heating up, but most Americans looking to cross the northern border into Canada must continue to wait. The border’s extended closure has not only put a hold on travel plans but also devastated an industry that brought in more than $20 billion to the U.S. in 2019, according to data from the U.S. Travel Association.

The 16-month closure of the U.S.-Canada border has affected small businesses from coast to coast, but some in popular tourist areas are starting to profit from the nationwide travel boom. Others are struggling without Canadian customers who were once their main source of revenue.

“Niagara Falls, New York, and the Niagara region in Canada, I’ve always likened it to a neighborhood separated by that river,” said Robert Restaino, mayor of Niagara Falls. “And I think what you see is like having a neighborhood cut off from your community.”

A nearly empty street in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, on March 2, 2021.Zou Zheng / Xinhua…

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