Federal government announces new rules for travellers entering Canada

Federal government announces new rules for travellers entering Canada
File photo/CHEK
Planes are seen at the Victoria airport in this file photo.

The Canadian government announced new mandatory rules on Monday for people arriving in Canada in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The federal government says air travellers arriving in the country will soon have to submit their quarantine plans and contact information online before boarding their flights.

The information, as well as a COVID-19 symptom self-assessment, must be entered on Arrive Can and travellers must be ready to show their receipt to a border officer.

Failure to do so could result in a $1,000 fine, although the government says there are some exceptions, such as for disability or inadequate infrastructure.

The new rule takes effect on Nov. 21.

Also on that date, anyone who has arrived in Canada by air, land or sea will have to confirm within 48 hours that they’ve arrived at their quarantine destination, and must complete a daily symptom self-assessment.

ArriveCAN, launched by the federal government in April 2020 as a place to submit travel information, is available as a mobile app or by signing in online.

The ArriveCAN app is available for download on Google Play for Android or through the App Store for iOS. Travellers can also submit their information by signing in online.

More information on pre-travel to Canada

Starting on Nov. 21, air travellers whose final destination is Canada required to submit their information electronically through ArriveCAN before they board their flight.

This includes travel and contact information, quarantine plan (unless exempted under conditions set out in the Mandatory Isolation Order), and COVID-19 symptom self-assessment.

Travellers must be ready to show their ArriveCAN receipt when seeking entry into Canada; a border services officer will verify that they have submitted their information digitally.

Travellers who do not submit the required information digitally before boarding their flight could be subject to enforcement action, which can range from verbal warnings to $1,000 fine. Exceptions will be made for those unable to submit documents electronically due to personal circumstances, such as a disability or inadequate infrastructure.

Starting on Nov. 4, air travellers can expect to be reminded by their air carrier of the need to submit COVID-related information digitally through ArriveCAN prior to boarding their flight to Canada.

And as of Monday, travellers entering Canada by land or marine modes are strongly encouraged to continue ArriveCAN by downloading the mobile app or signing in online to provide the mandatory information before they arrive to avoid additional delays for public health questioning and to limit points of contact at the border. Travellers can show their ArriveCAN receipt to a border services officer when seeking entry into Canada.

In-transit passengers whose final destination is not Canada do not need to submit their information through ArriveCAN.

More information on post-travel to Canada

As of Nov. 21, travellers who enter Canada by air, land or marine modes, unless exempted under conditions set out in the Mandatory Isolation Order, will also be required to submit information through ArriveCAN or by calling the 1-833-641-0343 toll-free number during their quarantine or isolation period.

Within 48 hours of entering Canada, travellers must confirm they have arrived at their place of quarantine or isolation and those in quarantine must complete a daily COVID-19 symptom self-assessment during their quarantine period.

Travellers who don’t use ArriveCAN to submit their information before entering Canada will be required to call the 1-833-641-0343 toll-free number on a daily basis throughout their quarantine or isolation period to provide their post-border information. They will not be able to revert to using ArriveCAN.

Travellers who do not submit the mandatory information required after they have crossed the border will be considered a high priority for follow-up by law enforcement.

The government said traveller information can be shared “quickly and securely” with provinces and territories to contact travellers for public health follow-up, and with law enforcement to verify compliance with the Mandatory Isolation Order.

Submitting information digitally in all modes of travel will also help travellers reduce their processing time at the border as well as limit physical contact between travellers and border services officers and Public Health Agency of Canada officers, the Canadian government said.

Travellers who may experience difficulty submitting their information through ArriveCAN can access additional information at Canada.ca/ArriveCAN or send an email to [email protected].

Dedicated lanes for faster processing for ArriveCAN users are available at some major international airports, including Vancouver International Airport, Calgary International Airport, Toronto Pearson International Airport, and the Montréal Pierre-Elliott Trudeau International Airport.

The federal government says ArriveCAN does not use any technology or data, such as GPS, to monitor or track traveller movements.

With files from The Canadian Press


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