Coronavirus Update: Requirements for US Citizens or Residents Visiting Canada

By June 29, 2020Covid 19

On March 21, U.S., Canada, and Mexico announced that the land borders between the three countries will close to non-essential travel as response to the COVID 19 pandemic. The initial closure was to last through April 20 and has now been extended to July 21. For more information on Canadian visitors into the U.S., please click here. For more information on applying for a TN visa during the border restrictions, please click here.

The Department of Homeland Security have defined non-essential travel as travel that is considered tourism or recreational in nature, including sightseeing, gambling, and attending cultural events. The border has remained open to travelers making trips for essential reasons such as work or school. Although Canadians can fly into the U.S., Canada is restricting all foreigners from visiting the country for non-essential travel via any mode of transportation, which includes flights.

On June 9, the Canadian government has loosened its border restrictions to allow American visitors with immediate family in Canada to enter the country. Through this exemption, the government is defining an ‘immediate family member’ as someone’s:

  • Spouse or common-law partner (Note: common-law partners have to have lived together for more than a year)
  • Dependent child
  • Parent or step-parent or the parent or step-parent of the person’s spouse or common-law partner;
  • Guardian or tutor.

Canada is also imposing a rule that all trips must last longer than 15 days, and the visitor must complete a 14-day quarantine in Canada first.

Canada is currently allowing American to drive through the country to Alaska for essential reasons such as for work or returning to their home. However, the traveler cannot make unnecessary stops along the way.

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