July 21, 2021
Save the date. Canadian officials announced on July 19 that the nation’s border with the United States will begin reopening next month to fully vaccinated American citizens and permanent residents, more than 16 months after closing to non-essential travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The US Express News reports.
“As a first step, starting August 9, 2021, Canada plans to begin allowing entry to American citizens and permanent residents, who are currently residing in the United States, and have been fully vaccinated at least 14 days prior to entering Canada for non-essential travel,” according to a statement. “This preliminary step allows for the Government of Canada to fully operationalize the adjusted border measures ahead of September 7, [when the borders will open for international travel] and recognizes the many close ties between Canadians and Americans.”
To enter Canada, travelers must use the government’s ArriveCAN “vaccine passport” app, which allows travelers to upload passport information as well as COVID-19 vaccination records and PCR test results. Fully vaccinated residents of other countries will be able to enter Canada beginning September 7, “provided that Canada’s COVID-19 epidemiology remains favorable.”
It is unclear when the United States will allow Canadians to enter across the land border for nonessential travel. It is also not clear when unvaccinated and partially vaccinated U.S. residents will be able to visit Canada.
Americans who hae received two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine must upload a photo of their vaccination record or enter the information manually. They will also be required to upload a negative result from a PCR Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours of flight departure or arrival at a land crossing.
ArriveCAN is free and available for iPhone and Android. Creating an account begins with entering an email address and a password. The app uses a smartphone camera to scan documents, but does not retain those images. Users can revoke permission for the app to use their camera at any time.
Travelers who prefer not to use their smartphone camera can enter the relevant information manually. Travelers who don’t have a smartphone can enter their information directly on the ArriveCAN website.
Once a traveler has completed entering his or her information, the ArriveCAN app provides a receipt with a digital code that must be shown at the Canadian border. Those using the website should print or take a screen shot of their receipt and bring it to the border.
The 5,525-mile border between the U.S. and Canada has been closed to non-essential travel since March 2020. The closure has been extended on a month-by-month basis, and the current restrictions were officially due to expire on July 21.
Research contact: @theusxpressnews
Editor’s note: According to a July 21 report in The Wall Street Journal, the Biden administration is extending non-essential travel restrictions for the US northern and southernborders until August 21.