New Hotel Stay Requirement! - Update
The Canadian Government has again updated its COVID-19 testing and quarantine measures; these measures are applicable to all traveller's to Canada, including Canadian citizens. Below is a summary.
As of February 22, 2021, in addition to pre-departure COVID-19 testing, all traveller's arriving from international destinations will be required to undergo a molecular COVID-19 test before exiting the first Canadian airport at which they arrive.
Hotel Stay ~ Prior to travel to Canada, travellers must reserve a government approved hotel in the first Canadian city of arrival for a period of 3 days. Travelers must stay at the government-approved hotel for 3 days while waiting for their COVID-19 test results. To book the mandatory 3-night hotel stay call 1-800-294- 8253 (toll-free within North America) or 1-613-830-2992 (collect outside of North America). Early reports are of long wait times before one can make a reservation. However, accordingly, to a government Press Release, traveller's will receive email confirmation of their accommodation within 4 hours of booking. There are currently only 11 hotels to choose from in the 4 cities accepting international flights (Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver).
The estimated cost of C$1500-C$2,000, which includes room, food, cleaning, security and transportation to the hotel from the airport, is at the traveller's expense. The three-night hotel stay does not replace the fourteen-day mandatory quarantine, but it can be counted toward the total quarantine period. With a negative COVID-19 test, the traveller may depart the hotel to quarantine for the remainder of the 14-day quarantine period at their residence or other appropriate quarantine location.
With a positive COVID-19 test result, the traveller will be taken to a government quarantine location for observation and medical care. Travelers will be required to take a second COVID-19 test at the end of the 14-day quarantine period.
Effective February 22, 2021 traveller's at land borders will be required to take a molecular COVID-19 test upon arrival at the port of entry and again at the end of the quarantine period. Travelers will be required to self-administer the second COVID-19 test provided at the border upon entry. For now, traveller's will be allowed to continue to their place of quarantine as there is no 3-day hotel quarantine requirement for land traveller's.
Please note that further details relating to the restrictions have yet to be disclosed and I expect that the restrictions will be the subject of a Charter challenge. In the meantime, truckers and emergency service providers will remain exempt; other exemptions may be also granted.
In this evolving travel environment, we remain available to answer travel restriction and quarantine questions as well as immigration inquiries.
This update has been compiled with the latest available information for the general information of Border Law clients and other interested parties. This Update is not comprehensive and should not be relied upon without appropriate legal advice.