On June 14th, 2022 , the Government of Canada announced that, as of June 20th at 00:01 EDT, vaccination will no longer required to board a plane or train in Canada. Additionally, employers in the federally regulated air, rail, and marine sectors will no longer be required to have mandatory vaccination policies in place for employees. They also updated that due to the unique nature of cruise ships vaccination against COVID-19 is still required for passengers and crew on cruise ships operating in Canadian waters.
Crown corporations and separate agencies will also be asked to suspend vaccine requirements. Furthermore, the Government of Canada is no longer moving forward with proposed regulations under Part II (Occupational Health and Safety) of the Canada Labour Code to make vaccination mandatory in all federally regulated workplaces.
Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents returning from international destinations who do not qualify for the fully vaccinated traveller exemption continue to be required to provide a valid pre-entry test result, remain subject to Day 1 and Day 8 molecular testing, and quarantine for 14 days. Canadians who leave the country will still be required to adhere to other countries’ vaccination requirements, including those in in the U.S. that keep unvaccinated Canadian truckers from crossing the border and the Canadian border will continue to remain closed to unvaccinated truckers.
The Government of Canada’s decision to suspend the mandatory vaccination requirement for the domestic transportation sector was informed by key indicators, including:
- The evolution of the virus;
- The epidemiologic situation and modelling (stabilization of infection and hospitalizations across the country);
- Vaccine science; and,
- High levels of vaccination in Canada against COVID-19.
Here are some of the updates from the announcement:
Requirement for Vaccinations Suspended for Domestic and Outbound Travel:
- As of June 20, 2022, at 00:01 EDT, vaccination will no longer be a requirement to board a plane or train in Canada.
- This change does not affect border measures that require all travellers entering Canada to continue following entry requirements, including vaccination.
- Other public health measures, such as wearing a mask, continue to apply and will be enforced throughout a traveller’s journey on a plane or train.
Cruise Ship Travel:
Vaccination against COVID-19 is still required for passengers and crew on cruise ships operating in Canadian waters.
Adherence to strict public health requirements on cruise ships will still be required.
Federally Regulated Transportation Sector Workers:
- As of June 20, 2022, at 00:01 EDT, employers in the federally regulated air, rail, and marine sectors will no longer be required to have mandatory vaccination policies in place for employees.
- Employers will be responsible for establishing return-to-work practices.
- Travellers on federally regulated planes and trains continue to be required to wear a mask throughout their journey except for brief periods (e.g., eating or drinking).
- Passengers on cruise ships will be expected to follow the masking requirements and other hygiene measures as directed by the ship’s crew, regardless of whether they are foreign or domestic.
Entry Requirements Remain for Travel to Canada from Abroad:
- Vaccine requirements for entry into Canada by foreign nationals remain unchanged at this time.
- Foreign nationals who are not fully vaccinated continue to be prohibited entry into Canada.
- Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents returning from international destinations who do not qualify for the fully vaccinated traveller exemption continue to be required to provide a valid pre-entry test result, remain subject to Day 1 and Day 8 molecular testing, and quarantine for 14 days.
- In addition, all travellers entering Canada are required to input their mandatory information in ArriveCAN within 72 hours before their arrival in Canada. Travellers who arrive without completing their ArriveCAN submission may be subject to Day 1, Day 8 molecular testing, quarantine for 14 days, and to fines or other enforcement actions, regardless of their vaccination status.
Please see the links below for additional information on the announcement: :
- News Release: Suspension of the vaccine mandates for domestic travellers, transportation workers and federal employees
- Backgrounder: Suspension of the mandatory vaccination requirement for domestic travellers and federally regulated transportation workers