Canada Requiring Tests For All Travellers and Ending Ban on African Countries

Canada introduced obligatory testing for all travelers regardless of the lenght of their trip or departure country. Moreover, the ban on 10 African countries has been lifted.

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Canada introduces once again obligatory pre-arrival molecular testing requirements for all travelers, no matter their trip length or country of departure. Moreover, the Canadian authorities lift the travel ban on travelers arriving in Canada from 10 African countries.

Pre-arrival testing

As of 21st Dec. 2021, all travelers coming back to Canada after traveling for 72 hours or less to the U.S. or other international locations will need to perform a COVID-19 PCR test in a country outside Canada before their planned departure. Such a requirement was already imposed on all the persons coming to Canada from long overseas trips

In November, the Canadian government also introduced an on-arrival testing obligation on all travelers coming to Canada by air, excluding the U.S. citizens, due to the emergence of the Omicron variant. Under this entry protocol, all travelers crossing the Canadian border are required to be tested on arrival at the airport (in some cases take-home tests are acceptable) and isolate until the moment of receiving a negative test result. These post-arrival testing requirements remain unchanged. 

The Canadian officials are working hard to ensure that the best and most efficient testing protocol is introduced at the airports.  

End of a ban on 10 African countries

As of Dec. 18th, 2021, travelers returning from one of the following 10 African countries: Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Namibia, South Africa, Eswatini, Egypt, Lesotho, Botswana, Nigeria, and Malawi are no longer banned from entry to Canada.
The lifted ban restricted entry to Canada for all foreign travelers who have been to these countries within the last 2 weeks. Canadians or permanent residents have been exempted from the ban but they have faced new entry restrictions like testing and quarantine upon arrival.

Banning entry for travelers arriving from these countries was recognized as the initial emergency measure taken by many governments around the world. This radical move, however, was met with criticism from banned countries. Canadian authorities claim that this radical step has served its purpose and slowed down the spread of the Omicron within Canada

Canada eTA and ArriveCAN

International travelers cannot forget about applying for a necessary entry permit to Canada, which is Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). Functioning as an electronic alternative to a traditional Canadian visa, eTA makes traveling more convenient as no Embassy visits are required anymore. Every eligible traveler must remember to submit an online application at least 72 hours before a trip to Canada!

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Canadian authorities decided to introduce an additional travel document, ArriveCAN, functioning as a health declaration. The form is obligatory for everyone traveling to Canada by land, air, or sea. The application can be submitted along with eTA online form 3 business days in advance of the planned departure.

Katarzyna Żyła

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