Travelling to Canada during COVID-19? Here’s what you need to know

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Travel is generally discouraged during this time. Whether you are traveling to, from, or within Canada, restrictions are understandably in place to limit the spread of the virus. However, if you must travel, here are the guidelines you must know.

Who are allowed to enter Canada?

You’re allowed to enter Canada if you are a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. Dual Canadian citizens with a valid Canadian passport or special authorization, persons registered under Canada’s Indian Act, and protected persons are also allowed.

Eligible foreign nationals include:

Immediate family members and extended family members staying in Canada for less than 15 days must have a non-discretionary purpose (travel that is necessary or non-optional).

*Compassionate reasons include:

  • Being present for the last moments of a loved one
  • Providing support for a person who is critically ill or medically requires support
  • Attending a funeral or end of life ceremony

Use this tool to make sure that you are eligible: Find out if you can travel to Canada

Requirements for traveling to Canada

There are new public health measures and expenses in place for those coming to Canada regardless of citizenship. This includes the following:

  • Quarantine Plan. Travellers should prepare a plan prior to coming to Canada that details how they will isolate for 14 days upon arrival.
  • Use of ArriveCAN app to submit the quarantine plan, together with travel and contact information, and a COVID-19 symptoms self-assessment. Travellers need to submit this before checking in at the airport or crossing the border.
  • COVID-19 tests (travellers may be required a pre-entry test, another one upon arrival in Canada, and towards the last few days of quarantine).
  • Mandatory quarantine:
    • Travellers flying to Canada are required to have a three-night pre-paid booking at a government-authorized hotel. This is where they’ll stay as they wait for COVID-19 test results.
    • After they get their results, they must continue their 14-day quarantine at a suitable place of their choice or an approved self-isolation location.

Follow these checklists to make sure you don’t miss anything when preparing for travel:

Travelling from Canada

If you intend to leave Canada for essential travel, note that:

  • You should know the risks of travelling outside of Canada.
  • Many countries have put in place travel and border restrictions. Know the official and latest Travel Advise and Advisories of the country you are going to before you book your flight.
  • Know your booking options. Be aware of the rules for reimbursement when flights are cancelled or rescheduled.
  • You should take all the necessary precautions against respiratory illnesses to protect yourself and others. This includes avoiding large crowds, washing your hands, and wearing a mask.

The best policy would be to avoid all non-essential travel out of Canada until further notice.
Source: The Government of Canada; State of emergency and public health orders, Government of Manitoba. Accessed February 25, 2021.

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