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COVID-19 Testing and Requirements to Enter Canada

What you need to know

Upcoming border changes

Fully vaccinated foreign nationals may be allowed to enter Canada for discretionary travel on the following dates if they meet specific criteria:

  • Effective August 9: American citizens and permanent residents of the United States, who currently reside in the United States, who meet specific criteria to qualify as fully vaccinated

  • September 7 (intended start date): All other foreign nationals who qualify as fully vaccinated   

The 3-night hotel stopover requirement will be eliminated for all travellers arriving by air after 12:01 A.M. EDT on August 9.

COVID-19 Testing

As of January 7, 2021, Transport Canada requires all air travellers entering Canada from international destinations, five years of age and over, to present a negative or residual positive COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) test result before boarding. The test will supplement, not replace, the requirements for health questionnaires, temperature checks and face masks.

To comply with this regulation, travellers will be required to present a negative or residual positive PCR or RT-LAMP test at check-in and Canada Customs, taken within 72 hours from their scheduled departure time. Please allow extra time to check in.

It is each traveller’s responsibility to source and pay for their own valid PCR or RT-LAMP test. For the Government of Canada's news release and other details please visit here.

Quarantine

Effective July 5, 2021 at 00:01 EST, any travellers eligible to enter Canada who are fully vaccinated 14 days prior to boarding a flight to Canada will no longer be required to isolate at government approved accommodations upon arrival and will be exempt from the 14-day self-isolation period. Children that are not fully vaccinated will not have to quarantine at a government approved hotel upon arrival but will still be required to self-isolate for the 14-day period. Before boarding their flight, fully vaccinated travellers are required to provide information related to their COVID-19 vaccination and evidence of COVID-19 vaccination to the Government of Canada via ArriveCAN. Any person who fails to comply with this requirement may be liable to a fine if this requirement applies to them. All other requirements listed below will remain in effect for all travellers. For more information, please visit travel.gc.ca.

Test requirements

It is the responsibility of each traveller to ensure they have all the valid travel documents required for entry into Canada.

For inbound flights from the United States, Mexico or Jamaica:

Before boarding, all travellers must provide evidence that they received a negative or residual positive result for a COVID-19 molecular test (PCR or LAMP) that was performed on a specimen that was collected no more than 72 hours before the aircraft’s initial scheduled departure time.

Requirements for residual positive COVID-19 test:

Travellers who present a positive COVID-19 test, after contracting COVID-19 but have since recovered, are permitted to travel to Canada providing they meet the following conditions:

  • The positive test result must be dated at least 14 days but not more than 90 days prior to the scheduled departure flight to Canada.

  • The traveller has to have recovered from COVID-19.

Testing locations

To assist our travellers, we've compiled resources to aid in searching for labs that perform COVID-19 tests. Please note that Swoop is sharing this list for informational purposes only. The details on this list may change at any time and travellers are encouraged to check back regularly.

Locations by destination

Locations by hotel

Exemptions

Children four (4) and under do not need to provide a negative test for COVID-19 before boarding their flight.

People exempt from following the prohibition of entry quarantine act do not need to provide a negative test for COVID-19 before boarding their flight.

ALL OTHER TRAVELLERS MUST FOLLOW THIS NEW GOVERNMENT MANDATED RESTRICTION OR RISK DENIAL OF BOARDING

Denial of boarding

Travellers will be denied boarding if one or more of the following conditions is met:

  • A traveller will be denied boarding if the test result is positive or inconclusive

  • A traveller will be denied boarding if the test result does not contain a sample date and time prior to the mandated window of testing (72 hours)

  • A traveller will be denied boarding if the test wasn’t processed through PCR or LAMP methodology

  • A traveller will be denied boarding if the test does not contain a name which resembles that of the traveller

Covid tests and quarantine requirements

CANADA

PCR or LAMP

Within 3 days

Ages 5+

No. Follow final destination rules

ArriveCAN app

14 days*see exemption

September 1, 2021

Residual COVID-19 test acceptable

UNITED STATES

PCR or antigen

Within 3 days

Ages 2+

Yes, any connecting flights needs prior test

Attestation form

Varies by state

September 1, 2021

Residual COVID-19 test acceptable

MEXICO

None required

None required

None required

None required

Health declaration form

None required

September 1, 2021

JAMAICA

PCR or antigen

Within 3 days

Not required for Canadians

Varies by country

Travel authorization prior to departure

Must stay within resilient corridor

September 1, 2021