News

Government of Canada introduces further restrictions on international travel

The Government of Canada continues to take unprecedented action to protect the health and safety of Canadians by introducing measures to prevent further introduction and transmission of COVID-19 and new variants of the virus into Canada.

Today, the Government of Canada announced new rules on international travel, in addition to the multi-layered approach on COVID-19 already in place. The government and Canada’s airlines have agreed to suspend all flights to and from Mexico and Caribbean countries until April 30, 2021. This will be in effect as of January 31, 2021.

Further, effective midnight (11:59 PM EST) February 3, 2021, in addition to proof of a negative pre-departure test, Transport Canada will expand the existing international flight restrictions which funnel scheduled international commercial passenger flights into four Canadian airports: Montréal-Trudeau International Airport, Toronto Pearson International Airport, Calgary International Airport, and Vancouver International Airport. The new restrictions will include scheduled commercial passenger flights arriving from the United States, Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and South America, which were exempted from the previous restriction. Private/Business and charter flights from all countries will also be required to land at the four airports. Flights from Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon and cargo-only flights will remain exempt.

As soon as possible in the coming weeks, all air travellers arriving in Canada, with very limited exceptions, must reserve a room in a Government of Canada-approved hotel for three nights at their own cost, and take a COVID-19 molecular test on arrival at their own cost. More details will be available in the coming days.

The Government of Canada will introduce a 72-hour pre-arrival testing requirement (molecular test) for travellers seeking entry in land mode, with limited exceptions such as commercial truckers. In addition, we continue to collaborate with partners in the United States to strengthen our border measures and keep our countries safe.

To ensure travellers’ awareness and compliance with quarantine requirements, the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) is working with security companies to help complete compliance checks for travellers arriving in Canada. Employees of these companies were trained by PHAC and authorized as Screening Officers under the Quarantine Act. These Screening Officers will visit travellers’ quarantine locations to establish contact, confirm identity and confirm that travellers are at the place of quarantine they identified upon entry into Canada. These new officers will conduct visits in 35 cities across the country, starting in Montréal and Toronto.

 

Backgrounder

The Government of Canada is introducing strict new measures to prevent the further introduction of COVID-19 throughout Canada. The government and Canada’s airlines have reached an agreement to suspend all flights to and from Mexico and Caribbean countries until April 30, 2021. This will be in effect as of January 31, 2021.

Further, in March 2020, to more effectively allocate resources (e.g., Public Health Agency of Canada officials) at the border, the Minister of Transport approved flight restrictions to funnel scheduled international commercial passenger flights to Canada’s four largest airports: Montreal-Trudeau International Airport, Toronto Pearson International Airport, Calgary International Airport, and Vancouver International Airport.

Flights from the United States, Mexico, Central America, South America and the Caribbean, as well as from Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, were exempted from this restriction and continued to operate and land at other Canadian airports.

To further strengthen measures already in place, and based on public health advice provided by the Public Health Agency of Canada, the Minister of Transport is expanding the scope of the flight restrictions made under the Aeronautics Act.

Effective midnight (11:59 PM EST) February 3, 2021, the restrictions will be expanded to include the following flights to Canada which will also be required to land at the four Canadian airports noted above:

  • Scheduled commercial passenger flights from the United States, Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean, and South America;
  • International business / private passenger flights from all countries; and
  • International charter passenger flights from all countries.

Flights from Saint-Pierre-et Miquelon and cargo-only international flights will still be exempt from this new requirement.

These changes, implemented through a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM), remain in effect until further notice.

The Government of Canada continues to work closely with the airline industry and airports to implement the changes.



Pin It on Pinterest