Canada to resume flights from India next week with additional COVID-19 measures

Click to play video: 'Canada’s border rules ease for fully vaccinated foreign travellers'
Canada’s border rules ease for fully vaccinated foreign travellers
WATCH: Canada's border rules ease for fully vaccinated foreign travellers – Sep 7, 2021

Canada will begin allowing direct flights from India early next week while requiring additional COVID-19 measures for those travellers, the federal government said Tuesday.

Transport Canada said the ban on all private and commercial passenger flights from the country, which was set to expire Tuesday, will be extended until 11:59 p.m. ET on Sept. 26.

After that, travellers eligible to enter Canada will need to have proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 18 hours of departure from India. Travellers will also have to upload their vaccination information to the ArriveCAN app prior to boarding.

The agency said in a statement it will be testing the new system on Wednesday by allowing three flights from India to arrive in Canada “to ensure the new measures are working.”

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Anyone coming to Canada from India via an indirect route will still need to obtain a negative COVID-19 test from a third country other than India within 72 hours of departure before continuing on to Canada.

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The ban on flights from India was first put in place on April 22 due to the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant in the country.

While the more transmissible and deadly variant has become the dominant form of the virus in Canada and many other countries, COVID-19 cases in India have plateaued amid increased vaccinations.

Click to play video: '‘Delta Plus:’ India state health minister orders close monitoring of COVID-19 variant mutation'
‘Delta Plus:’ India state health minister orders close monitoring of COVID-19 variant mutation

On Monday, India reported 26,115 new cases and 252 new deaths, continuing a weeks-long decline from the devastating wave seen in the spring.

About 64 per cent of India’s adult population has received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose and 22 per cent are fully vaccinated with two doses.

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The lifting of the Indian flight ban will come nearly three weeks after fully vaccinated travellers were allowed to enter Canada from all other countries around the world.

The United States, however, continues to restrict travel from Canada, citing the Delta variant’s rise in both countries.

–With files from Global’s Aaron D’Andrea and Reuters

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