Air as well as rail travelers in the United States have not been experiencing unusual delays and it has mostly been business as usual despite the partial shutdown of the US federal government after midnight on Monday, September 30, 2013.
Many federal departments, falling into the budget category of discretionary spending, shut down on Tuesday, October 1, after the US House of Representatives and Senate failed to reach an agreement on a bill to approve the budget for the government for the 2014 fiscal year.
However, many essential services, such as airport security, air traffic control and customs and border inspections are exempt from the shutdown. They are considered to be critical and necessary – not discretionary – and do not fall within the domain of the congressional bickering.
Also, the US State Department continues to process foreign visa applications and US applications for passports as fees are collected for these services.
US Embassies and consulates worldwide will also continue to remain operational and provide services to US citizens.