From November 30 onwards, Canada will allow only those who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to enter the country. The new rule is applicable to anyone above the age of 12 years who use any of the federally regulated transportation modes such as VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer trains, all Canadian airports, and passenger vessels engaged in voyages of 24 hours or more including cruise ships.
The rule was originally introduced in October 30. But at that time, the country provided a grace period for travellers during which, they were allowed to present proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test instead of proof of vaccination. But that grace period has ended and the travellers will now have to submit a proof of vaccination to enter the country. However, a small number of people still enjoy the exemption, like those who cannot be vaccinated owing to medical reasons.
Canada has also introduced a temporary measure, which allows foreign nationals to leave the country by air before February 28, without having to be vaccinated. However, they will still be required to present a negative molecular test for COVID-19 before boarding the plane. This policy is applicable to only those who have entered Canada before October 30.
Similarly, in the case of fully vaccinated Canadian citizens and permanent residents, if they leave the country and return within 72 hours from the time of departure, they need not provide a negative molecular test result for COVID-19 on return. However, any traveller who goes abroad for more than 72 hours needs to submit a negative COVID-19 molecular test result before coming to Canada. Canada does not accept antigen test results, which are also called as rapid tests, for this purpose. Starting from February this year, Canada has made it mandatory for all incoming international travellers above the age of five to take a COVID-18 test, regardless of whether they are vaccinated or not.
From November 30 onward, Canada's decision to include three more in the list of approved COVID-19 vaccines will come into effect. So the vaccines approved in Canada are:
To be considered a fully vaccinated person, a traveller must have received the full recommended dose of any of the above vaccines at least 14 full days before the day of departure. If their proof of vaccination is not in English or French, they need to produce a certified translation. The travellers must also submit all the required information including proof of immunization and a quarantine plan through the free online application ArriveCAN, before they arrive in Canada.
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