Canada Expects to Keep Its Border with the U.S. Closed Through at Least Early July 2021, according to a senior Canadian official quoted by Politico. Americans who aren't Canadian citizens or permanent residents have, with few exceptions, been unable to travel to Canada since March 2020, when the U.S.-Canadian land border closed to non-essential travel.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has indicated that at least 75 percent of Canadians should have received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and at least 20 percent should be fully vaccinated before border restrictions are relaxed. Canada passed the U.S. in administering COVID-19 vaccine first doses as of May 20, and Canada has reported that over 68 percent of Canadian adults have received a first dose; for the overall population, Canada has administered a first dose to over 63 percent of its population, vs. just over 51 percent for the U.S. Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam has noted that Canada is on track to reach the 75-20 target by the first week of July 2021.
Canada has some of the strictest COVID-19 entry restrictions; since February 22, 2021, all air passenger arrivals have had to pay for a 3-night airport hotel quarantine, testing negative before completing the remainder of their required 14 day self-quarantine at home. This system is only starting to loosen for Canadian citizens and permanent residents who are fully vaccinated, with a recent announcement that starting the first week of July (this is subject to change and depends on vaccinations and infections), these fully vaccinated returning travelers will be able to skip the airport hotel quarantine and isolate at home until they test negative COVID-19, which will then exempt them from the rest of the 14-day quarantine. Few Canadians will benefit much initially, since only ~7% of the population has been fully vaccinated. That's because Canada, similar to the UK, has focused on administering first doses, maximizing the share of the population that is partially protected.
The U.S. and Canada have been renewing their bilateral month-to-month border closing agreement, with the next one due to expire June 21, 2021. Earlier, some Canadian mayors said that Canada's Public Safety Minister Bill Blair had signaled that the land border could be opened as early as June 22. The most recent news pushes the timeline back by over 1 week, and possibly longer.
For our non-Canadian readers: where in Canada would you like to visit once border restrictions are loosened?
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