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COVID-19 Update: Canada Now Eases Border Measures for Fully Vaccinated Travelers

If you are an avid reader of Canada immigration news and updates, you must have heard that Canada now eases border measures for fully vaccinated travelers. Nothing has changed in terms of eligibility, however, the time and financial impact for qualified travelers are significant.

Let’s take a look at how these factors can affect you whether you’re an international student, a citizen, or a permanent resident of Canada.

Canada’s travel restrictions

Up to this date, the country is still restricting non-essential travels. Only international students, Canadian citizens, and permanent residents are allowed to go through the borders.

Students must be enrolled in a college that belonged to the list of approved DLIs. Upon arrival in Canada, they must follow the school’s COVID-19 readiness plan, a 14-day period quarantine, and a day-8 test.

Because of these policies, many students became hesitant in pursuing their studies in Canada due to the added burden when it comes to expenses. Unfortunately, the costs during the quarantine process are shouldered by the students.

What has changed?

Quarantine & day-8 testing exemptions for fully vaccinated travelers

Since the worldwide COVID-19 vaccinations are currently taking place, I suppose this made the country decide to become more welcoming to its travelers. Finally, the government has made a critical order to allow some entitlement on those people who have completed a full vaccination.

Canada eases border measures for fully vaccinated travelers by exempting the following individuals:

  • Asymptomatic

  • Fully vaccinated with either of these recognized vaccines:

  • Pfizer-BioNTech (Comirnaty, tozinameran, BNT162b2)

  • Moderna (mRNA-1273)

  • AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD (ChAdOx1-S, Vaxzevria, AZD1222)

  • Janssen/Johnson & Johnson (Ad26.COV2.S)

  • Have met the 14-day condition before entering the borders of Canada

  • Uploaded their proof of vaccination digitally via the ArriveCAN, either in French or English

Entry requirements for fully vaccinated travelers

If you have completed the full series of vaccines, note that there are still a couple of things you need to prepare as part of Canada’s entry requirements. Let’s discuss these in each section below:

Pre-entry test

Proof of a negative COVID-19 molecular test (e.g. PCR and RT-PCR) is required for travelers 5 years and above. This must be taken within 72 hours of the departure time of your last direct flight to Canada. You won’t be allowed to go onboard without this, so plan your schedules accordingly.

If you have a history of contracting the virus, your results are expected to remain positive even if you are already fully healed. You only have to provide previous proof of a positive COVID-19 test between 14 and 90 days before your flight.

Another thing you need to consider is the qualified testing centers in your area. Take a look at the list of licensed COVID-19 testing laboratories here in the Philippines in here.

Once you arrive, keep your test results within the 14-day period. The government officials will require this document if you tested positive, if you have developed symptoms within 14 days from the date of arrival, or if you were known to be exposed to a symptomatic person.

Avoid tampering or providing fraudulent test results. The government imposes hefty fines of up to 1 million CAD. There’s also a possibility of imprisonment and you will be denied entry or can be banned from entering the country again.

Quarantine plan

Canada eases border measures for fully vaccinated travelers through the exemptions which were already laid out, however, the only determinative body is the Canadian government personnel at the border. Though precautions and pretesting are implemented, untoward circumstances might still happen, there is still a possibility of contracting the disease. This is why travelers should prepare to quarantine for 14 days especially if they become symptomatic upon arrival, or if in case they don’t meet the requirements per an officer’s verdict.

In planning for your quarantine, you need to: