The United States has extended its border closure to Canada until at least Aug. 21. Here is a refresher of the current border rules.
The land border between Canada and the U.S. is currently closed to non-essential travel and has been since March 21, 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The closure does not affect essential travel, such as crossing the border for work or for the transportation of goods. It does not affect supply chains.
When travelling for essential work into the U.S., there is no self-isolation requirement.
“Non-essential travel” includes tourism and travel that is recreational in nature, according to U.S. Homeland Security.
“Essential travel” includes critical infrastructure support, economic services and supply chains, health, immediate medical care, and safety and security.
U.S. citizens, permanent residents and those with valid travel documents are permitted to travel into the U.S. from Canada.
The land border rules enacted by the U.S. do not apply to air travel, though, which is open to non-essential travel but with some requirements.
All travellers by air to the U.S. that are two years old and older must receive a negative COVID-19 test three days before travelling and must present the negative test result to the airline before boarding.
Travellers that have recovered from COVID-19 can also provide proof from a licensed health care provider that their recovery occurred within 90 days before travelling. They do not have to provide a negative COVID-19 test.
New rules for Americans
While the U.S.’s travel restrictions have been extended, Canada updated its rules recently to allow fully vaccinated travellers from the U.S. to enter the country without the need to quarantine as of Aug. 9.
American travellers must enter proof of vaccination in the ArriveCAN app or web portal, and must still provide a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours before their departure, but do not need to provide a negative test upon arrival if they are fully vaccinated. Unvaccinated travellers must provide a negative COVID-19 test both before and after arrival.
Canada will be dropping its three-night quarantine in a government-approved hotel as of August 9 for all travellers arriving by air. However, all travellers must have a quarantine plan in case it is determined at the border that they do not meet all of the requirements, according to Health Canada.
Unvaccinated travellers must provide a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours before their departure and also must complete a test on arrival and after eight days. They must quarantine for at least 14 days upon arrival, even if showing no symptoms.
Children under 18 years old and not fully vaccinated but accompanied by fully vaccinated travellers do not need to complete a 14-day quarantine beginning August 9.
Unvaccinated children will need to provide a negative COVID-19 test on the first and eighth day after arriving.
Children under five years old do not need to provide a test.