Canada is to relax its Covid-19 travel rules from 28 February with fully vaccinated travellers no longer required to take a pre-departure PCR test.

The country’s public health agency said Canada was moving towards a “more sustainable approach to long-term management of Covid-19” by introducing a “phased easing” of travel restrictions. 

The changes mean that fully vaccinated travellers arriving in Canada will be “randomly selected” for testing and will no longer have to quarantine while waiting for their test result.

Vaccinated travellers will be able to take either a lateral flow test one day before their flight or a PCR test no more than 72 hours before departure.

The Public Health Agency of Canada added that lateral tests taken at home were “not sufficient” to meet entry rules and these tests must be administered by a “laboratory, healthcare entity or telehealth service”.

Unvaccinated travellers will continue to be required to take a test on arrival and then on day eight, as well as quarantine for 14 days. 

GBTA Canada welcomed the Canadian government’s move to ease restrictions as a “positive step” that would boost business travel.

Nancy Tudorache, GBTA’s regional vice president, Canada, said: “Reducing Canada’s travel advisory, eliminating the need for molecular (PCR) testing prior to entry, opening more airports to international travel and eliminating the need to quarantine bring us closer to normal than ever before.

“It is important however, that the government also commit to align any future travel restrictions due to possible future variants, with international best practices so that Canadians that want to do business abroad, and those that want to come and do business in Canada, can do so in a predictable manner that supports our overall economic recovery.”

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