Canada has reopened its borders to fully vaccinated travelers from the United States.
The reopening of the land borders with the U.S. came into effect today, August 9, 2021. It is the first step in a reopening plan announced by the Government of Canada on July 19, 2021.
“Canadians’ safety and security always come first. With rising vaccination rates and fewer cases [of COVID-19] in Canada, we can begin to safely ease border measures,” said The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, in a press release announcing the new measures. “A gradual approach to reopening will allow our health authorities to monitor the COVID-19 situation here and abroad. Canadians have worked hard and sacrificed for each other, and because of that work, we can take these next steps safely.”
The timeline for the new measures is:
August 9, 2021 – Allow entry for non-essential travel to fully vaccinated U.S citizens and permanent residents, residing in the United States. Permit international flights to land at Halifax Stanfield International Airport, Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport, Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport, Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport, and Edmonton International Airport (the date depends on readiness of airports). International flights are currently permitted to land at the international airports in Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver. Exempt fully vaccinated travelers from quarantine.
September 7, 2021 – Open borders to fully vaccinated travelers.
The new measures include specific entry requirements. These include:
- Travelers completing the full course (two shots) of vaccination with a Government of Canada-accepted vaccine at least 14 days prior to entering Canada.
- All travelers must use ArriveCAN (app or web portal) to submit their travel information (subject to limited exceptions).
- All travelers must be asymptomatic upon arrival.
- All travelers must have a paper or digital copy of the vaccination documentation in English or French (or certified translation) ready to show a government official on request as evidence.
- All travelers, regardless of vaccination status, must have a pre-entry COVID-19 molecular test result.
- All travelers, regardless of vaccination status, must provide a quarantine plan and be prepared to quarantine, in case it is determined at the border that they don’t meet the necessary requirements.
In its release on the easing of border restrictions, the Government notes that the epidemiological situation and vaccination coverage are not the same around the world. Canadians are still advised to avoid non-essential travel outside of Canada. Travelers to Canada are also advised that some provinces and territories may have their own entry restrictions in place. It is the traveler’s responsibility to check and follow both the federal and any provincial or territorial restrictions and requirements before traveling.
Please note, there are no changes to mandatory testing and quarantine requirements for unvaccinated travelers.