After nearly a year and a half, Canada is reopening to fully-vaccinated U.S. tourists as of 12:01 Eastern Time on August 9.
For now, the new rules only apply to U.S. citizens and permanent residents, specifically. All other nationals are expected to be let in on September 7, pending the state of the pandemic at that time.
Canada will only consider you “fully vaccinated” if you have received vaccines that are approved in Canada, such as Pfizer, Moderna, Astra Zeneca, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson). Also, two weeks need to have elapsed between your last dose and your attempt to enter Canada.
Being fully vaccinated means you will not need to take a negative COVID-19 test upon arrival, unless you get randomly selected. You also won’t have to quarantine or take the day-eight test. However, you still have to come with a pre-arrival PCR test taken within 72 hours before trying to cross the border. Rapid tests are not accepted.
Children under age 12 who cannot be vaccinated will be allowed to enter Canada, but they have to do all the same testing requirements as unvaccinated travellers.
All information, including documents for children, has to be submitted to Canadian officials through ArriveCAN prior to arrival.
Pretty much everyone coming to Canada needs to use ArriveCAN. The government designed this app so that travellers could communicate with border officers during the pandemic. Now, it is being used for travellers to prove their vaccination status, as well as quarantine plans, travel information, etc.
Even though fully vaccinated travellers are not necessarily required to quarantine, you will still need to show up with a plan in case the border officer determines you have to self-isolate.
ArriveCAN is a user-friendly digital tool to help travellers comply with Canada’s border measures quickly and securely. It is available as a mobile app or by…
After you submit your documents to ArriveCAN, you will get a receipt by email which you can show the border services officer. If you need to make any changes after you submitted your information, you will have to start over and resubmit your documents.
For your quarantine plan, the border official will want to know:
The officer’s decision will be based on the facts established from these questions. Every case is going to be different. For your specific case, you can contact the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA).
All the normal border-crossing procedures still apply, just wear a mask when you arrive.
In addition to normal screening questions, the border officer will ask you how you are feeling and assess you for symptoms of COVID-19. If they suspect you are ill, they may refer you to get a medical assessment by public health officials.
When driving to Canada from the U.S. you need a valid I.D., such as a U.S. passport, NEXUS card, or enhanced drivers licence. Children under age 16 need only show proof of U.S. citizenship.
Also, make sure you are not importing any prohibited goods, including cannabis. In fact, you also have to declare any organic products you are bringing to Canada such as food and plants. Animals must also be declared. Dogs and cats age three months and older need valid signed and dated certificates from a veterinarian verifying vaccinations against rabies.
Declare all your purchases, and if you are travelling with more than $10,000 CAD in any currency. It is not illegal to bring it, you just have to declare it. You also have to declare any firearms or weapons you are carrying when you cross the border, keeping in mind most weapons are prohibited in Canada.
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