Travel, from July 5th green light to vaccinated people
Starting July 5, Canada will lift restrictions on international travel for fully vaccinated passengers arriving in Canada.
From 11:59 a.m. on the night of July 5, Canadians who are currently able to enter Canada according to existing rules, if they are fully immunized against Covid-19, will be able to do so without having to isolate themselves for 14 days, without taking a test on the eighth day and without having to stay in a government-authorized hotel. “As we have always told Canadians, border easing measures will be implemented as we see our communities become increasingly safe – Health Minister Patty Hajdu said today in announcing the new plan – those planning to travel abroad this summer, remember to check the requirements of the country they will visit.”
As part of the changes, travellers will have to disclose their vaccination status: this applies to all people trying to enter Canada. The requested information will include the name of the vaccine or any other information identifying the vaccine they received, the dates on which the injections were administered, and how many doses they received. To be considered for exemption, travellers must have received a vaccine currently approved for use in Canada and must have received all required doses at least 14 days before departure.
The vaccines currently approved by Health Canada are those produced by Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD and Janssen. Travellers deemed exempt from quarantine rules will still be tested upon arrival in Canada. They will also have to isolate themselves until the “day 1” test results are negative.
Measures that will remain in place include asking travellers aged five and over to provide proof of a negative PCR test, carried out within 72 hours before the scheduled flight or arrival at a land border crossing.
The federal government says people who want to be considered for quarantine exemption will need to provide proof of their vaccination by uploading support documentation in English or French (or a certified translation) to the ArriveCAN app: this must be done before the traveler arrives at the Canadian border.
More details, the federal government said, on what information will be needed and how to upload information to the app will be made available by July 5. Travellers will need to have the most up-to-date ArriveCAN app, which will also be released by that date.
Travellers will also need to keep a copy of the vaccination documentation (paper or electronic) to check at the border: they must have this documentation for two weeks after entering Canada. People who use a translation must also have their original documentation.
Although the federal government has defined the details of its first phase of easing travel restrictions, Canadians are still advised to avoid non-essential travel. “Although the future looks brighter than it has been for a long time thanks to falling Covid-19 cases and ongoing vaccinations across the country, we cannot lower our guard – said Public Security Minister Bill Blair – our step-by-step approach to loosening border measures is driven by facts, scientific evidence and advice from our public health experts. In everything we are doing in response to this pandemic, our top priority continues to be the health, safety and protection of all Canadians.”
Meanwhile, travel restrictions for foreign nationals, including U.S. citizens, remain in place until at least July 21. “Discussions are underway with provincial, territorial and international partners with the aim of allowing non-essential travel in the coming months of fully vaccinated foreign nationals to Canada”, said Blair.
Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said he will work with international, provincial and territorial partners to “determine the next steps by the end of the summer. “This could include expanding the number of Canadian airports eligible to receive international flights,” concluded Alghabra.