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Going to Canada?

PETE GLADDEN
Pete’s World

Published: May 9, 2022

Having not traveled to Canada for several years I’ve been seriously jonesing for a taste of the Great White North again.
Yup, what with the COVID-19 pandemic roaring across North America multiple times, Canada and the US had a nonessential travel ban in effect for a shade under two years, a border closure that turned out to be the longest interruption of a United States border crossing in US history.
Well, here’s the good news: Canada’s now allowing US citizens in for recreational purposes without testing and quarantining.
But here’s the bad news, getting into Canada today isn’t anything like it was in the good old pre-pandemic days.
So if you’re looking to go north during the upcoming summer season here’s what you’ll need to know.
The Public Health Agency of Canada, says that as of April 1, 2022 fully vaccinated travelers won't need a pre-entry COVID-19 test result to enter. But there’s still a chance you can be chosen at random to undergo a COVID-19 molecular test upon arriving. Even if you are, you’re not required to quarantine while awaiting the test result.
So the Canadian Public Health Agency’s idea of “fully vaccinated travelers” translates into several specific guidelines: You must have received at least two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine accepted for travel, or a mix of two accepted vaccines, or at least one dose of the J&J vaccine; you must have no signs or symptoms of COVID-19; and you must have uploaded proof of your vaccination on Canada’s ArriveCAN website.
Now the aforementioned is actually the concise version, because obtaining an ArriveCAN entry receipt involves more than just uploading your vaccination history, you’ll also need to fill out a travel questionnaire.
To begin the whole process you’ll need to create an account via the ArriveCAN website or download the ArriveCAN app.
A valid email address and password are necessary (create a password that you can remember because you’ll need it to sign into your account later).
While creating your account, you’ll be required to read and accept the ArriveCAN privacy statement, which has a disclaimer about how your information will be used, as well as the penalties you’ll incur for refusing information and/or providing false information.
Now there are several sub-sections in this form, and the sequencing can vary based on whether you’re filling out a website or an app. form.
You’ll need to indicate the purpose of your travel to Canada––most of us going there for recreational purposes will select the discretionary/optional travel category.
Next, you’ll log in your information concerning travel plans, including mode of transport when entering Canada.
If it’s by air, you’ll enter flight information, country of departure, arrival airport, airline, flight number, date and time of arrival––everything. You can only enter this information if your planned arrival in Canada is within the next 72 hours. 
After that traveler information must be entered, which entails the travel document you’ll be using––passport, permanent resident card/NEXUS card, document number, country in which it was issued, and your name and date of birth as listed on the document.
The ArriveCAN app is slightly different, as you’ll also be asked to scan your travel document or upload a photograph of it.
The final step involves entering your COVID-19 proof of vaccination information.
Okay, so what if you don’t qualify as fully vaccinated but still want to go to Canada?
In that case you’re going to have to go the website https://travel.gc.ca/travel-covid/travel-restrictions/wizard-start and fill out a questionnaire to see if you’ll somehow qualify as an unvaccinated individual.
Now I’m vaccinated and boosted with the Moderna vaccine, but I nonetheless filled out the aforementioned questionnaire as an anonymous person who was totally unvaccinated and the result was exactly what I expected. I was informed that going to Canada was not in my future.
Now if you have unvaccinated and/or partially vaccinated children 5 years or older, you must provide a valid pre-entry test result, even if they’re with a fully vaccinated adult.
When you ultimately get your ArriveCAN receipt/download emailed to you, it should contain the letter I, V, or A beside your name denoting that you’re fully immunized. And thus, this ArriveCAN receipt is your entry ticket whether you enter by car, bus, air, ship or by foot.
So if you want to go to Canada today, remember: No valid ArriveCAN receipt, no entry.


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