You are currently viewing Here’s what was new when I entered Canada from the USA on Tuesday

Nothing! It’s a trick headline to finally (maybe) get as many people as possible to understand something very important and very basic: There are only 3 steps to travel (types of rules to check) and THEY ARE COMPLETELY SEPARATE. So nothing was new to enter Canada!

Nothing has changed because Canada’s entry rules have not changed at all. For months now. Changes are finally coming though.

I’ll explain that first… but I also shared with you my detailed experience with the entry rules of course, so you can see how it was!


Absolutely nothing was new when entering Canada

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There have been 2 major changes that have been in the news a lot in the last few days:

Neither of the 2 applied to me Tuesday because I entered Canada from the US:

  • I did not fly FROM a Canadian airport
  • I did not ENTER the United States

Entering Canada is step 3, which has not changed at all!

It’s not that complicated: Each rule is separate.


Step 1: Changes to depart from Canada

So yes, as of October 30th there is a brand new requirement. (And as I can confirm, they don’t even check, strangely). It’s for boarding a plane in a Canadian airport.

It’s really just for planes departing from Canada, that’s it! So many people seem to think that this changes anything about the entry rules, but no, it doesn’t change anything.

For vaccinated travelers like me, but also for non-vaccinated travelers: They can still enter Canada, that doesn’t change. That won’t change on November 30th after the grace period either. The new requirement is just for Canadian airports. Not anywhere else.

So Canada’s entry rules are not changing (at least for now). Completely separate.


Step 2: Changes to US entry rules

Then there are major changes to the US rules as of last Monday. Changes are only to enter the US. And I had already entered last week.

Anyway, since I am vaccinated, absolutely nothing changes for me in terms of entering the US by plane.

Well… in fact, there is one thing that changes for vaccinated travelers, and that is that it is now allowed to enter the United States even if you have been in Europe in the previous 14 days.

I talked about this yesterday when I absolutely had to point out the absurdity of the article where an author complained that she was refused entry… because she didn’t follow the rules of entry!!!

In short, the US entry rule changes obviously do not change anything at all about Canada’s entry rules.

It’s a different country.

Different country, different rules. Completely separate.


Step 3: No changes to Canada’s entry rules

So that means that yes, you still need a pre-departure test to enter Canada because Canada hasn’t changed its entry rules (yet).

Even for a 3-hour trip.

None of Canada’s rules depend on the length of the trip. This is true in most countries, for that matter. These are entry rules. If you enter, they apply. For the time being at least.

UPDATE: Short trips will be exempt soon, finally!

Fortunately, tests are so easy to get for free in most states, as I did again on Sunday (you may have seen me talk about this travel tip on CBC, CTV, CityNews, and others this week).

You can watch a new video about this in that post if you like.

Excerpt from my video about free tests (photo credit: Andrew D’Amours/Flytrippers)


Does this pre-departure test requirement make sense for short trips? Of course not. You are even allowed to take the test before leaving Canada, so the effectiveness is laughable at best.

We’ll have a detailed article on this subject later this week, so don’t miss it (especially if you want to help us get rid of this measure).

So anyway, there you have it: As I was entering Canada, none of the recent changes affected me at all.

And if you understand that the rules are all separate, you already understand travel rules better than 90% of people!

I also shared a detailed review of my experience entering Canada so you can see how easy it is, step by step.


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The experience of entering Canada has not changed in months because Canada’s entry rules have not changed in months.

What would you like to know about entering Canada? 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: 64/193 Countries, 47/50 US States & 9/10 Canadian Provinces).

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Richard

    To be clear, though driving into the US you will still be required (by USBP) as of Nov 8 to show a Vaccine Passport. So bottom line there is no escaping Canada unless you have proof of Vax

    1. Andrew D'Amours

      Yes absolutely, the US now requires vaccination no matter how you enter, even for a transit.

  2. Patricia Grainger

    You write about returning to CA from the USA by air. How about returning by land? How different are the requirements?

    1. Andrew D'Amours

      Absolutely no change there either, and absolutely the same rules as entering by air (except it’s 72 hours before entry for the pre-departure test, instead of 72 hours before the scheduled departure time of the flight).

  3. Aaron Galloway

    can you drive into the us and then board a plane without atest.

    1. Andrew D'Amours

      Yes, there are absolutely no requirements to board planes in the USA (like almost every country in the world except Canada). Just yesterday, 2 million passengers took a flight in the US and they most certainly would not tolerate test/vaccine requirements there (cultural differences haha).

  4. Peter Hopper

    Dr. Tam is reviewing the PCR test mandate. I think it will be lifted soon, in my opinion.
    On the other side of the picture, the media does not know what you share here Andrew.
    Either they do not care to investigate, or they want people not to travel. I suspect the latter.
    Almost all tests are free in the US if you follow Andrew’s posts. I have saved about $700 in testing costs for my trips back and forth to Florida. (My seventh trip is this week since March 2020)
    I see posters on my condo HOA website posting they paid $180 US for a PCR test to return to Canada.

    I watch CP24 (Toronto) and the CBC to follow what they are relaying about travel to the US. They both say PCR tests cost travelers about up to $250 each per traveler to re-enter Canada.
    It seems the media has now shifted their shaming.
    To complaining about PCR test costs.
    Which is good for people who like to travel.

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