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Requirements for U.S. residents entering Canada when border reopens

Many people on both sides of the border welcome reports about the imminent reopening of the U.S.-Canada border. Some Canadian businesses in border towns have struggled without the support of Americans, not to mention all the families who have been kept apart for almost 16 months.

Canadian Immigration has released news that the reopening is planned for Aug. 9, when those meeting the requirements will be allowed to enter British Columbia and other provinces.

The Canadian Government stopped all nonessential border crossings in March of 2020, and the following will be in place when the border reopens in August:

  • Only permanent U.S. residents will be eligible to enter Canada
  • U.S. citizens will have to show they are fully vaccinated.
  • Border control will only accept those who received the approved combination of vaccines.
  • Proof of a negative PCR test at least 72 hours before applying to cross the border will be required.
  • Regardless of vaccination status, a PCR test will identify early virus presence.

Which are the approved vaccines?

Canada approves vaccines developed by the following manufacturers:

  • Pfizer/BioNTech
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • AstraZeneca
  • Moderna

Canada does not recognize or approve vaccines produced in Russia, China or other countries.

Concessions and policy changes

Reportedly, minors under age 12 who are not vaccinated may cross the border with fully vaccinated guardians or parents. There will be no 14-day quarantine imposed on those minors. Furthermore, there will be no mandatory post-arrival tests for fully vaccinated American travellers. However, border agents will select random individuals for molecular or PCR tests. If those tests red flag any early virus presence, post-arrival tests or quarantine might be ordered.

If you have been separated from your loved ones in Canada for many months, you may be eager to reconnect. Before you travel, it’s a good idea to ensure that you meet all the requirements set by Canadian Immigration to avoid being refused entry at the border.