The travel ban, imposed since early 2020, barred access to non-U.S. citizens traveling from 33 countries - including China, India and much of Europe - and had also restricted overland entry from Mexico and Canada.
Jill Chambers ran straight into her sister's arms.
"It's the best thing ever in the whole world. It's been so emotional for millions of families all over the world. But this is the best thing that's ever happened to me. Thank you so much everybody."
British Airways CEO Sean Doyle said the day was an important milestone.
"it's very exciting to be here. And you can see the buzz around JFK today and a lot of lovely stories about people reuniting for the first time in nearly two years."