You are currently viewing 3 Myths About Border Closures

Many many travelers confuse key concepts related to border closures and entry restrictions. It’s a rather complicated matter, and some things seem very contradictory. Yet, like it is often the case in life, the conventional wisdom about border closures is wrong.

Here are 3 myths debunked.


Border closures and entry restrictions

Since we’ll soon be covering how to start at least planning to travel again so you can be ready when it’s responsible to do so, I want to dispel myths we commonly see that are wrong.

Many say that:

  1. leaving Canada is not allowed
  2. entering Canada is not allowed
  3. flights to Canada are not allowed

All three statements seem to be very widespread beliefs, but they’re all false. Not just now; they’ve been false for the whole duration of this crisis and will likely continue to be until it ends too.

Of course, to pre-empt the people who don’t read half of a post and start criticizing… no it’s not time to travel yet. Explaining the different types of travel restrictions and explaining facts is important no matter whether you should travel now or not.

And once it will be time to travel, it will help that you understand these concepts to better plan your trip logistics.


1. Leaving Canada is not allowed

There is no law or restriction or anything at all that stops you from exiting the country. Countries rarely have laws preventing exits, and Canada certainly doesn’t and never has since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis. It’s not a “grey area” either. It’s just allowed and saying the opposite is false. The only restrictions are about entering most countries, not when leaving Canada.

Some think that because there is a travel advisory in effect, you aren’t allowed to leave.

That’s just not the case. A travel advisory is a recommendation, it is not binding in any way. Not following it will not get you in any trouble whatsoever with the law. These advisories have impacts, but preventing you from exiting is not one of them. We’ll talk more about those.


2. Entering Canada is not allowed

If you are a Canadian citizen, you’re always allowed to enter Canada. I was honestly very surprised to see that so many travelers thought that because Canada’s borders were closing to foreigners, they themselves would not be allowed to enter.

That’s just not the case. Border closures never apply to citizens. So if you were to return to Canada from the US today, of course, you’d be allowed it even though the border is closed. It’s closed to non-Canadians. That’s an important distinction.

As we said when this whole crisis started, the risk with the border closure is not that you won’t be allowed back in, it’s that flights will be canceled and you simply won’t be able to make your way back at all.


3. Flights to Canada are not allowed

Speaking of flights canceled… some are, but some are not. Air France has been flying from Paris to Montreal since March. China Southern Airlines is still flying from Guangzhou to Vancouver even today. Many believe that borders being closed means flights are banned.

That’s just not the case. A closed border means non-Canadians cannot enter. That’s it. Nothing to do with flights. Some countries might have flight bans, but Canada certainly does not, and never has either during this crisis. There are many reasons, but the plain fact is that there is no flight ban.


Hopefully, this clears up those very different concepts and gives you a better understanding of the situation and of what we’ll need to think about when it’s responsible to travel again. Don’t hesitate if you have any questions about those 3 things that you would like answered in the detailed post.

We’ll give you a lot more details about these concepts soon, don’t miss it by subscribing for free!

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These 3 myths about border closures and entry restrictions are very widespread, but they are simply not accurate.

What do you think of those border closure facts? Tell us in the comments below.


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Andrew D'Amours

Andrew is the co-founder of Flytrippers. He is passionate about traveling the world but also, as a former management consultant, about the travel industry itself. He shares his experiences to help you save money on travel. As a very cost-conscious traveler, he loves finding deals and getting free travel thanks to travel rewards points... to help him visit every country in the world (current count: 71/193 Countries, 47/50 US States & 9/10 Canadian Provinces).

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