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Returning snowbirds face travel restrictions

Winter is making a place for summer, and snowbirds from British Columbia and other provinces and territories are making their way back from their winter homes. However, various requirements are in place this time. Crossing into Canada from the United States requires compliance with numerous conditions and restrictions set by the government of Canada. Remaining up to date could avoid delays at the border post.

Different requirements are in place for those driving home and Canadians flying in. 

Driving back to Canada

In contrast to Snowbirds who return to Canada by air, those driving home are not subject to mandatory quarantine in hotels. However, there are other challenges when crossing land borders. During the worldwide pandemic, snowbirds must prove that they are virus free. Border authorities require proof of negative tests taken no longer than 72 hours before reporting to the border. 

The 72-hour requirement could be challenging for those whose winter homes are in Texas, California, Arizona or Florida. Heading for Canada from those states typically takes longer than 72 hours, especially in adverse weather conditions. It could complicate the timing of the test if the 72 hours have expired by the time they reach the border post. A new test would have to be taken, causing significant delays. 

Requirements after crossing the border

The main border crossings have testing stations where snowbirds will be tested again. If those tests are negative, they must proceed to their homes for a 14-day period of quarantine. It is crucial to note that the trip from the border to the residence forms a part of the quarantine period. They may not stop for supplies, to eat at a restaurant or for any other reasons along the route. 

Canada immigration and the federal government make frequent changes to the requirements and restrictions for border crossings. Thus, snowbirds returning to British Columbia by road are advised to take all the necessary steps to get the most up-to-date information about border crossings to avoid being refused entry. 

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