Fully vaccinated travellers coming to Canada will no longer need to get tested for COVID-19 before they arrive. The move will take effect on April 1.
Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos says these travellers could still be randomly tested but don’t need to quarantine while waiting for results.
“Unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travellers will continue to be tested with COVID-19 molecular tests on arrival and on day 8 while they quarantine for 14 days,” Duclos says.
As for cruise ships, Transport Minister Omar Alghabra says passengers will need to take an antigen test no more than one day before they depart but are no longer required to be tested before getting off the ship.
The Northern Ontario Border Working Group (NOBWG), a group formed by Destination Northern Ontario (DNO), Nature and Outdoor Tourism Ontario (NOTO) and the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) says today’s announcement will certainly be a boon to northern Ontario’s tourism industry.
“Approximately 1.0 million U.S. visitors spend $466 million in Northern Ontario annually,” they shared in a release. “This will allow all tourism operators and stakeholders to implement their full marketing plan to recapture and recover lost business.”
NOBWG says it will continue to work with the Canadian Government to develop plans to remove random testing for travellers arriving into Canada as well as a plan for unvaccinated travellers to return in the near future.
“These two pieces remain a barrier to a full recovery of the tourism industry,” the group added.
***With files from Mo Fahim