Current Travel Updates as of March 18, 2020

Published: March 17, 2020.
Written by: Jason - Destination Specialist, Calgary.

There have been evolving developments almost daily on what this means for booking, cancelling and postponing travel at this time. We understand that as a result of these ongoing updates, this has created much confusion and uncertainty for vacationers. Here’s what we have so far.

The government of Canada is listed as a ‘Level 3’ travel alert, which means to avoid all non-essential travel. The current travel restrictions also prevent foreign nationals from all countries except the United States from entering Canada. This measure does not apply to aircrews, travellers arriving in Canada in transit to a third country, Canadian permanent residents or immediate family members of Canadian citizens.

Canadian International Airports accepting, and redirecting, flight arrivals:

  1. Vancouver International Airport
  2. Toronto-Pearson International Airport
  3. Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport
  4. Calgary International Airport

What Canadian airports/airlines are doing to ensure optimal health and safety practices are adhered to:

  • provide stronger and more visible messaging
  • strengthen health screening at kiosks
  • enhance the cleaning and disinfection of high-traffic areas and facilities
  • prevent all travellers who present COVID-19 symptoms, regardless of their citizenship, from boarding any flight in/to Canada.

Tips on Health & Safety Before You Travel:

It can be a very exciting time to plan for a vacation. However, in light of our current travel restrictions, we now need to consider planning ahead for health and safety precautions too. Here are some tips when including health and safety precautions in future travel:

  • Check current health notices on the Public Health Agency of Canada’s Travel Health prior to any travel as this would have the most up to date information.
  • Check with your medical practitioner if any vaccinations or other medical precautions are recommended, or required, for the countries you are travelling to. As well, seek professional medical advice if you have a medical condition that may impact travel.
  • Research the destination(s) you will be travelling to on their local safety/security conditions and any entry/exit requirements that may be needed. You can also reach out to your Destination Specialist for assistance on any non-health related requirements such as a travel visa or entry certificates.
  • Please monitor your own health; wash your hands often, use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not readily available and sneeze or cough into your arm as to reduce the spread of germs (while fully covering your nose and mouth). If you become ill while travelling, please alert the proper health authorities in the country you are visiting or an airline staff member and/or Canadian border services immediately upon arrival.
  • Bring your own personal medical kit. This kit should include enough prescription medication for the duration of your trip, as well as basic medicines to treat common ailments too. It is important to also take out comprehensive medical insurance, which should include emergency hospitalization. Talk to your Destination Specialist about the types of travel insurance packages that are available.

Important Resources for Travellers Amid our Current Circumstances

There may be a lot of information circulating that could cause some confusion on travel and related advisories. Here are some resources that could assist with planning future international travel.

  • Visit the Global Travel Advisory, which acts as a one-stop-shop for Canadians looking to get comprehensive, up-to-date international travel information. Information includes entry/exit requirements for various countries, travel advisories and risk-levels and much more.
  • The Centers For Disease (CDC Control) as well as The World Health Organization can provide the latest on the COVID-19 virus. While the Canadian government has recommended that all non-essential travel for now, this page provides information on the countries that pose the highest risks for visitors as well as protective measures on how to best protect yourself.
  • Sign up with the Registration of Canadians Abroad. This service helps Canadian travellers stay connected with the Government of Canada as it enables government officials to alert travellers internationally with important information in the event of an emergency (either abroad or at home).