- The Canadian border opens to American travelers on Monday for the first time since March 2020.
- US travelers will need to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated.
- Canada will open to fully vaccinated international travelers on September 7.
The Canadian border, closed to travelers from the United States since March 2020, will finally reopen Monday to American tourists who can prove that they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
The Canadian government previously barred Americans from entering the country on non-essential travel and will continue to bar other foreign nationals until September 7, when the borders will reopen to fully vaccinated travelers from other countries.
Starting August 9, U.S. tourists – that is, U.S. citizens and permanent residents – will need to use the Canadian government’s ArriveCAN app to upload their proof of vaccination 72 hours prior to arrival.
Previously, Americans arriving in Canada on essential trips had to undergo a mandatory three-night stay in a government-authorized hotel. During these stays, travelers were required to monitor themselves for symptoms of COVID-19 and were not allowed to leave their assigned rooms unescorted.
The United States and Canada had mutually agreed to block non-essential travel across the 5,500-mile land border in March 2020. Every month since then, the two governments have renewed the restrictions.
The border reopening on August 9 comes after months of criticism of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose refusal to ease restrictions has infuriated many mayors and businesses in the border area.
The reopening was also threatened by a long-standing labor dispute between the federal government and border staff at the Canada Border Services Agency. Border officials were on the verge of strike action and had already started a slowdown, which meant border officials were asking travelers all the questions in their textbooks, according to Politico.
But negotiations between the unions and the Canadian government were successful in preventing a strike before the reopening and resulted in a new four-year deal granting annual pay increases and new parental and compassionate leave policies.
Border closures and the lack of tourists over the past year and a half have been devastating for the Canadian economy. In Toronto alone, the shortage of tourists resulted in an $ 8.4 billion loss of economic activity the year after the pandemic began, according to Destination Toronto, the official marketing agency for the tourism industry in Toronto. city.