Some international travel restrictions easing July 5 for fully vaccinated people with proof

Fully vaccinated Canadians and permanent residents will be able to enter Canada and not need to quarantine starting July 5, the federal government announced today.

The news comes as many Canadian provinces have hit key vaccination targets — with more than 75 per cent of eligible Canadians receiving at least one dose, and over 20 per cent receiving two.

Even so, Canadians and permanent residents who are fully vaccinated won’t be able to simply walk through customs.

According to officials speaking during a technical briefing on background, those entering will need to show documents proving they received doses of the vaccines approved in Canada at least 14 days prior to entering the country.

Officials said travellers must electronically submit COVID-19-related information to the government’s ArriveCAN app before arriving, meet the pre- and on-arrival test requirements, be asymptomatic and still have a suitable quarantine plan.

“Final determination regarding exemptions is made by a government representative at the border based on the information presented at the time of entry into Canada, which is why a quarantine plan is still required,” said a statement.

If they are approved, travellers will not have to quarantine or take a COVID-19 test on day eight. Those arriving by air will also not be forced to stay at a government-authorized hotel and non-vaccinated children or dependent adults travelling with them will also be exempt from the hotel stay.

Children who aren’t vaccinated will be able to go home with their parents, but must quarantine for two weeks, said an official speaking on background.

There are no changes to the border restrictions for travellers who are not fully vaccinated.

Canadians still advised to avoid non-essential travel

The easing also does not apply to foreign nationals, unless they are already exempted by the border restrictions. Ottawa announced Friday it would be continuing existing restrictions at the Canada-U.S. border for at least another month, until July 21.

“At this time, the Government of Canada continues to strongly advise Canadians to avoid non-essential travel,” said Public Safety Minister Bill Blair. 

“Although the future is looking brighter than it has for a long time with COVID-19 cases on a downward trend and vaccination efforts going well across the country, we can’t let our guard down.”

The new rules kick in July 5 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Health Minister Patty Hajdu said she’s still consulting with provinces about the next phase of easing travel restrictions.

Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino also announced that individuals approved for permanent residence may travel to Canada as of June 21. Previously, foreign nationals who held a valid confirmation of permanent residence issued on or before March 18, 2020, were exempt from Canada’s travel restrictions.

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