Canada to enforce hotel quarantine for arrivals, ban travel to Mexico and Caribbean

Jan 29, 2021

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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Friday that the country has banned travel to sun destinations until April 30. As of this weekend, Canadian airlines will suspend service to Mexico and Caribbean destinations.

Additionally, Canada will now require incoming travelers to undergo part of their quarantine in a government-approved hotel.

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Trudeau said in his announcement that on arrival at an eligible airport, a traveler will have to take a PCR test and then pay for their three-day quarantine hotel stay, which will cost more than 2,000 CAD (about $1,565), while they await the test result.

All arriving travelers to Canada are also required to quarantine for 14 days. If the traveler’s test returns a negative result, they will be able to finish their 14-day quarantine at home. If a traveler’s test comes back positive, they will be required to quarantine in designated government facilities.

The new hotel quarantine requirement is in addition to Canada’s existing policy, which mandates that travelers have a negative pre-departure COVID-19 test. Similar rules now apply to travelers entering the U.S. and the U.K.

Starting next week, all international passenger flights must land at Vancouver, Toronto, Calgary or Montreal.

Trudeau said that Canadian airlines Air Canada, WestJet, Sunwing and Air Transat have all agreed to cancel service to Caribbean and Mexican destinations beginning on Sunday through April 30.

“They will be making arrangements with their customers who are currently on a trip in these regions to organize their return flights,” Trudeau said.

Friday’s announcement follows the rapid spread of variant strains of the coronavirus, which are thought to be more contagious and potentially more deadly.

On Wednesday, the United Kingdom announced that it would require travelers coming from a list of 33 high-risk countries to undergo their mandatory 10-day quarantine in a government-supervised hotel. Further details about the cost of the hotel quarantine or when it takes effect have yet to be announced.

It’s unclear if the United States has similar plans. As of the time of publication, the State Department has not responded with comment.

Canada’s border with the United States will remain closed at least through Feb. 21.

Featured photo by China News Service/Getty Images.

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