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Where Canadians Can Travel Abroad During COVID-19


TORONTO – While Canada continues to advise against non-essential travel outside the country, many countries are accepting Canadian travelers with limited COVID-19 restrictions.

Most countries have COVID-19 restrictions in place for foreign travelers, Mexico and Colombia are two exceptions to this. Both of these countries require a travel form to be completed prior to arrival, but have no other COVID-19 restrictions in place for Canadian travelers.

Canada currently restricts all travel to 16 countries. Nations on this list include Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Myanmar and Somalia; More details here.

EUROPE

European Union member countries began accepting Canadian travelers in July. Travelers to most European countries will need a negative PCR test and proof of vaccination to avoid mandatory quarantine. Unvaccinated travelers will need a negative PCR test and a 10 to 14 day quarantine depending on the country visited. France, UK, Sweden, Germany and Austria require negative tests, but do not ask Canadians to self-quarantine upon arrival, regardless of their vaccination status.

Many European countries hosting Canadian travelers accept those who had mixed and matched vaccines as long as the vaccines have been approved for use by the EU health authority or the World Health Organization (WHO). What is considered fully vaccinated may depend on the country, so it is always best to check government websites for the most recent information, but currently most countries in the EU accept mixed doses of AstraZeneca and mRNA, as well as a mix of mRNA doses. .

UNITED STATES

Currently, the United States has no vaccine requirements for travel. The land border is currently closed to non-essential travel by Canadians, but they can enter the country by air. Canadians traveling to the United States from abroad should be aware of the additional restrictions in place. Canadians will not be permitted to travel to the United States if they have traveled to India, China, Iran, Brazil, South Africa or most European countries within the previous 14 days.

Land border restrictions for Canadians traveling to the United States are in place until September 21 and may be extended. US travelers can use the land border to enter Canada since August 9 with proof of vaccination and a negative PCR test within 72 hours of arrival.

COUNTRIES OF LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARABES

Most countries in Latin America and the Caribbean also accept Canadians, but travel requirements vary. Some countries will need a negative COVID-19 test before arrival while others will do tests on arrival. Other countries require vaccination and some offer COVID-19 certified accommodation to control the spread.

The Turks and Caicos Islands require a full vaccination and a negative test to travel to the country. They accept mixed doses between mRNA and adenovector vaccines, and between mRNA doses.

Canadians traveling to Jamaica will be required to provide a negative test. Travelers will need to complete an online application within seven days of travel and wait for approval before entering the country.

Likewise, Saint Lucia does not require a vaccination to enter, but travelers must have a negative PCR test at least five days before visiting the country. Saint Lucia has set up special accommodation to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on the island by keeping tourists in an area during their quarantine period. For those who are fully vaccinated, they can come and go from these accommodations as they please; for partially or unvaccinated travelers, there are restrictions on where they can travel and what excursions they can participate in at certified resorts.

Bermuda will require a negative test and unvaccinated travelers will need to be quarantined for 14 days upon arrival.

On August 10, Martinique entered lockdown and is currently not accepting tourists.

It is important to check the restrictions at your destination before you go as they are regularly updated.

CRUISES

As with other destinations, it is important to keep up with changing requirements on cruise ships. Currently, there are no cruises departing from Canada, but Canadians can board them in other countries.

What is considered fully vaccinated can vary widely by port and country, so it is important to be aware of vaccination policies while traveling.

Celebrity cruises departing from most ports in Greece accept mixed doses of mRNA, but those departing from Athens accept mixed doses of AstraZenca and an mRNA vaccine.

Norwegian Cruise Line requires passengers to be fully vaccinated with a single brand of vaccine.

All cruises departing from U.S. ports require passengers to be vaccinated as per the CDC definition, which does not include full vaccination with AstraZeneca, or the mixing and pairing of AstraZeneca and a dose of mRNA.

WHO CAN TRAVEL IN CANADA

Canada has currently suspended flights from India and Morocco. Otherwise, travelers entering the country must provide a negative molecular test performed within 72 hours of arrival and provide proof of vaccination authorized for use in Canada to avoid a 14-day stay in quarantine.

Travelers should use the ArriveCAN app to upload their proof of vaccination.

There is no guarantee that travelers to Canada will be accepted at the border.

TRAVEL INSURANCE

Travel insurance is always beneficial in the event that travelers need medical assistance abroad, and insurance companies now offer travel insurance specific to COVID-19.

Manulife has a pandemic travel plan and WestJet offers free COVID-19 travel insurance to travelers using its services.

Since Canada currently advises against all non-essential overseas travel, it’s best to check insurance policies to see if they will cover any COVID-19 issues that may arise while traveling. Some insurance companies, like TD Insurance, have put in place coverage exemptions where Canadians have been advised to avoid travel.

Travel insurance coverage may also depend on the traveler’s vaccination status, one of Manulife’s travel insurance plans does not cover expenses related to COVID-19 for unvaccinated travelers.

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