CANADA: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

CANADA: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

At this time, only Canadian citizens, permanent residents, people registered under Canada's Indian Act, protected persons, select foreign nationals traveling for essential reasons and immediate family members of Canadian citizens or residents are allowed to enter Canada.

The Canadian government previously announced that they will be changing the restrictions for fully vaccinated Canadian travelers coming back into the country.

Fully vaccinated Canadians returning to Canada will soon be able to avoid a mandatory quarantine as long as they still test negative for COVID-19. Those who don't meet the new requirements and arrive in an airport will still have to quarantine in a hotel for up to three days at a cost of up to $3,000, until they receive a negative COVID test, and then finish their remaining 14-day quarantine elsewhere.

Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said Monday the government is still urging people not to travel internationally right now, but noted the border restrictions that began more than 15 months ago "were never meant to be permanent".

The current ban on incoming non-essential travel stands, meaning foreign tourists will not be allowed into Canada under the relaxation of measures.

For the new measures to apply to them, fully vaccinated travellers must meet several other requirements. A previous version said all other travellers who have not been fully vaccinated will still have to stay in hotel quarantine, instead of just those arriving by air.

They will still need to provide proof of a negative test from 72 hours before their arrival, take a second test upon arrival, and have a plan to quarantine should that test come back positive.

Public Safety Minister Bill Blair said on Friday that the government is "planning measures for fully vaccinated Canadians", and further details will be provided on Monday.

The vaccines approved by Canada are now those of Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, and Astra Zeneca.

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Travellers must also be asymptomatic.

Upon arrival, a Canadian Border Services officer will ask to see your ArriveCAN receipt.

No changes have been made to border measures for travellers who are not fully vaccinated.

"We recognize that people are anxiously awaiting to reopen the border", Blair said.

Fully vaccinated refers to people who got all needed doses of the four vaccines Canada has authorized, at least 14 days earlier. "If you are planning to travel internationally this summer, keep in mind to check the requirements of the country that you're visiting, and remember that many countries have had to make sudden changes as they cope with rising cases or severe outbreaks", she said Monday.

Canadian authorities want 75% of the eligible population to be fully vaccinated before properly reopening borders for worldwide travel.

Homeland Security said in a statement it noted "positive developments in recent weeks and is participating with other USA agencies in the White House's expert working groups with Canada and Mexico to identify the conditions under which restrictions may be eased safely and sustainably".

The government also announced Monday that in this first step of reopening, worldwide commercial flights will continue to be funneled through the Montréal-Trudeau global Airport, Toronto Pearson worldwide Airport, Calgary global Airport and Vancouver worldwide Airport.

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