It’s been a long time coming, but trips to Canada have just got a whole lot easier.
From February 28, PCR tests are going to be totally scrapped for fully-vaccinated visitors entering the country. Officials hope the option of much cheaper antigen testing will help revive its ailing tourism industry. Tourists will, however, be subject to further random Covid testing at the border.
Lateral flow antigen tests need to be taken the day before travel (and must come back negative), and the process must be ‘supervised by a professional’ – although this can be done via an online portal. The same rules apply for all visitors, from any country. Arrivals who are randomly swabbed in the airport won’t have to quarantine while they wait for results.
Of the new testing requirements, Canada’s public safety minister Marco Mendicino said: ‘The Canadian economy will not fully recover until our tourism sector recovers and today’s measures will help us safely welcome visitors to Canada.’
It’s worth noting that unlike in Spain – which has just removed a ban on unvaccinated teens – children over the age of 12 have to be double-jabbed, too. If they haven’t received both doses, they’ll have to quarantine on arrival. Under 12, and they’re fine not to be vaxxed.