Canada immigration news: As Ottawa takes the next step in lifting restrictions despite rising COVID-19 cases, fully-vaccinated international travellers can enter Canada as of Tuesday, September 7.
As of 12.01 am, anyone fully vaccinated is not required to quarantine, but is required to produced a negative PCR test within 24 hours of departure to board a flight.
On arrival in Canada, vaccinated travellers do not require a further test unless they are randomly selected at the border.
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Those who are not fully vaccinated are still required to take a test on arrival.
Vaccination details and other information such as a viable backup quarantine plan must still be entered on the ArriveCan app before travel.
With the rise in cases driven by the Delta variant, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) says it pushed ahead with the reopening plan because it was supported by statistics.
Canada saw a 0.19 percent positivity rate among vaccinated travellers from August 9 to 26, representing 112 positive results from 58,878 tests.
The move to lift international travel restrictions comes after the same freedom to travel was extended to fully-vaccinated Americans a month ago.
Controversially, the U.S. is yet to extend the same freedoms to fully-vaccinated Canadians, who are still unable to cross the border for non-essential travel. The current ban expires on September 21, with many Canadians hopeful it will be allowed to expire.
Canada’s India Flight Ban
Meanwhile, Canada continues to have in place a ban on direct passenger flights from India, which also expires on September 21.
The decision to extend the ban for a fifth month in August also proved controversial. The ban was initially put in place when India was at the height of a deadly surge in COVID-19 cases.
The ban does not apply to cargo-only or military flights or medical transfers.
Indians travelling via third countries are still able to enter Canada, but they require a negative PCR test before the flight arrives in Canada.
“This means that passengers who depart India to Canada via an indirect route will continue to be required to obtain a valid COVID-19 pre-departure test from a third country – other than India – before continuing their journey to Canada,” Transport Canada notes on its website.