Trudeau announces new restrictions on international travel to Canada
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday unveiled new restrictions on international travel to the country.
Trudeau said in a news conference that Canada’s main airlines — Air Canada, West Jet, Sunwing and Air Transit — are suspending flights to all Caribbean destinations and Mexico from Sunday until April 30.
The airlines are “making arrangements with customers who are currently on a trip in these regions to organize their return flights,” Trudeau said.
In addition, international flights must land at one of four airports in the nation — Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal — starting next week.
Trudeau said Canada will introduce mandatory PCR testing at the airport for travelers returning to the country “in the coming weeks.” Travelers will then have to quarantine at an approved hotel for up to three days while awaiting their results at their own expense.
Travelers that test negative will then quarantine at home “under significantly increased surveillance and enforcement.”
Those who test positive will have to quarantine at designated government facilities to ensure they don’t have any of the new, more contagious variants of COVID-19.
Trudeau also said the nation will soon require nonessential travelers to present a negative COVID-19 test before entry at the land border with the U.S., and he said that Canada is working on additional testing requirements for land travel.
Canada currently requires air travelers to test negative prior to boarding international flights bound for Canada, and everyone entering the country has to quarantine or isolate for 14 days.
“With the challenges we currently face with COVID-19 both here and abroad, we all agree that now is just not the time to be flying,” Trudeau said.
There have been 770,427 coronavirus infections in Canada since the pandemic began, according to a count from Johns Hopkins University, and over 19,000 deaths.