Canada has made it more difficult to cross its borders with several more COVID-19 related entry requirements. Besides the mandatory 14-day quarantine that has been in effect for many months, returning Canadians and non-citizens meeting the exemptions for non-essential travel to Canada are now required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test result to enter the country. That’s in addition to testing again upon entry to the country, quarantine in a government-approved hotel and additional testing while still in quarantine.
As of February 15, Canada began requiring a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours pre-arrival or a positive test taken 14-90 days prior to arrival. The latter is designed to give travelers who have tested positive and still show antibodies the time to have overcome the virus and still be immune to re-infection.
As of February 22, all travelers entering Canada at a land crossing must take a COVID-19 test upon arrival, quarantine and take another test toward the end of their 14-day quarantine. The same applies to all travelers arriving by air, with the added requirement that they quarantine at a government-authorized hotel for three nights. Air travelers must show a reservation at one of these authorized hotels before being allowed to board a flight landing in Canada. Travelers must pay for all hotel costs and meals.
The authorized hotels are all located near the Canadian airports accepting international flights. Those included Calgary International Airport, Montreal-Trudeau International Airport, Toronto Pearson International Airport and Vancouver International Airport. All travelers whether arriving by land or air must also submit travel and contact information, including a suitable quarantine plan, via the smartphone application ArriveCAN before crossing the border or boarding a flight.
Canadian citizens and permanent residents arriving at the land border without a valid COVID-19 molecular test will be allowed entry but fined $3,000. Foreign nationals will be refused entry if they don’t have a valid test result or an acceptable quarantine plan.
The only exemptions to the restrictions, besides diplomats and essential service providers, is strictly for essential travel to ensure that economic supply chains continue between Canada and the US. Non-essential travel is prohibited; that includes travel for vacation and recreational purposes. Be aware that providing false, misleading or inaccurate information to enter Canada is considered a serious offence under the Canadian Quarantine Act and can incur fines up to $750,000 and/or six months in prison.
For more details on the restrictions, visit the Canada Government website at https://travel.gc.ca/travel-covid. SCI members with general questions about hunting travel, COVID-19 related travel restrictions, or other hunting issues may contact SCI’s Hunter Information Service at www.safariclub.org/contact.