Canada opening 8 more airports to international travel

Shelby Thevenot
Published: November 2, 2021

Canada will be reopening more airports to international fights starting on November 30, the same day that passengers and crews will have to prove that they are fully vaccinated if they want to depart from a Canadian airport.

“Increased vaccination levels have allowed us to safely re-open these additional Canadian airports to international passenger flights," Transport Minister Omar Alghabra said in a media release. "This measure will help ensure that travellers are able to access more regional airports for their international travels this winter, while continuing to support the Government of Canada’s measured approach to re-opening our border."

The eight airports that are reopening include:

  • St. John’s International
  • John C. Munro Hamilton International
  • Region of Waterloo International
  • Regina International
  • Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International
  • Kelowna International
  • Abbotsford International
  • Victoria International

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These airports join the list of 10 Canadian destinations that are already accepting international flights:

  • Halifax Stanfield International
  • Québec City Jean Lesage International
  • Montréal-Trudeau International
  • Ottawa/Macdonald–Cartier International
  • Toronto Pearson International
  • Billy Bishop Toronto City Centre
  • Winnipeg James/Armstrong Richardson International
  • Edmonton International
  • Calgary International
  • Vancouver International

More airports could start welcoming international travel, on the recommendations from Health Canada. The coronavirus pandemic, demand, and operational capacity of the airports will continue to play a role in how the government determines which locations can expand to international flights.

Also on November 30, all passengers and airline staff leaving a Canadian airport must be fully vaccinated. Canada started phasing in the measure on October 30, and has given travellers and crews until the end of the month to get fully vaccinated. The rule applies to travellers age 12 and older who use federally regulated modes of transportation, including all domestic and international flights from Canadian airports, VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer train passengers, and cruise ship passengers on voyages of 24 hours or more.

There will be some flexibility allowed for visiting foreign travellers who entered Canada before October 30. They will be allowed to leave the country without being fully vaccinated until February 28, if they provide a negative COVID-19 test before they travel.

"The strict vaccine travel requirements that will be fully phased in by November 30, and the pan-Canadian proof of vaccination credential now available for travel, are creating opportunities for safe travel for vaccinated Canadians," Transport Canada's media release says.

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