Canada Travel Requirements – Guide for International Tourists
Canada is the first country that I traveled to outside the Philippines after more than two years. Since the beginning of COVID-19 pandemic, travel and border restrictions for every single country has ever changing. When I learned that Canada has started to ease its restrictions, I thought it was time to visit the country since I haven’t able to use my tourist visa yet and it’s already going to expire this year. As a fully vaccinated traveller against COVID-19, entering Canada has became easy for me. I found the Canada travel requirements simple and straightforward.
Pre-entry test was still needed as part of pre-arrival requirements when I went to Canada in March. But starting April 1, 2022, all fully vaccinated travelers regardless of citizenship can be eligible to enter Canada without taking the pre-arrival COVID-19 test. However, those who are not fully vaccinated and will arrive in Canada, whether by air or at the U.S.-Canada land border, must still take a COVID-19 test prior to arriving at the port of entry.
Canada travel requirements
Before going to the steps on how to accomplish the requirements to enter Canada, check first if you are eligible to enter the country by visiting the website of Government of Canada – travel, testing, and borders. If you’re eligible to enter, the following are the testing and quarantine requirements based on my experience as fully-vaccinated foreign national traveler:
1. ArriveCAN receipt with letter I or, V, or A beside the vaccinated traveller’s name
ArriveCAN is the official Government of Canada platform to provide your information when entering Canada. This is where you enter your proof of vaccination, quarantine, and travel information.
How to use ArriveCan?
- Create your free ArriveCAN account. You can this by downloading the mobile app or signing in on a computer.
- Save proof of vaccination and travel documents such as passport in your ArriveCAN account before any planned travel
- Get an ArriveCAN receipt within 72 hours before your arrival to Canada. It’s a QR code receipt after submitting your travel and quarantine plan information using your ArriveCAN account. You need to present this during check-in or to Canada Border Services Officer upon entry.
2. Proof of vaccination
Upload proof of vaccination in ArriveCan before you travel. In my case, I uploaded the Vaccine Certificate issued by the Bureau of Quarantine. Vaccines accepted by the Government of Canada for the purpose of travel to and within Canada are the following:
- AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD (ChAdOx1-S, Vaxzevria, AZD1222)
- Bharat Biotech (Covaxin, BBV152 A, B, C)
- Janssen/Johnson & Johnson
- Medicago Covifenz
- Moderna (Spikevax, mRNA-1273)
- Novavax (NVX-COV2373, Nuvaxovid, Covovax)
- Pfizer-BioNTech (Comirnaty, tozinameran, BNT162b2)
- Sinopharm BIBP (BBIBP-CorV)
- Sinovac (CoronaVac, PiCoVacc)
To qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller, you must have received, at least 14 calendar days by the day you travel:
- at least 2 doses of a vaccine accepted by the Government of Canada for the purpose of travel
- or a mix of 2 accepted vaccines
- or at least 1 dose of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine
3. Have a quarantine plan
As part of the Canada travel requirements, all travelers must have a suitable quarantine plan for 14 days starting on the day of entry in Canada. The quarantine plan in ArriveCan includes information regarding the accommodation where you can quarantine.
Arrival test in Canada
The border services officer may notify you that you’ve been randomly selected for a mandatory arrival test . When I arrived in Canada, I was randomly selected for an antigen test. I was asked to fill up some information such as my address in Canada and contact information. You also need to have a Canada phone number ready. In my case, I provided the phone number of the hotel that I stayed on. After that, I proceeded to the testing area. There was no need to wait for the result since it will be sent via email within 24 hours. I was able to get my Antigen test result that evening, and it was negative.
If the arrival test is negative, travelers must:
- follow local public health measures
- wear a well-fitted mask when in public spaces for the first 14 days after your entry;
- maintain a list of all close contacts and locations you visit for your first 14 days in Canada
- monitor yourself for signs and symptoms
- keep copies of your proof of vaccination and pre-arrival tests for 14 days
For more information and latest update on Canada travel requirements and restrictions, please visit the Government of Canada website.