With vaccination rates increasing around the world, and continued evolution of the epidemiological situation, Government of Canada recently announced measures related to Canada’s domestic vaccine mandate.  Additionally, in order to contain the spread of the new Omicron variant, adjustments to Canada’s border measures were announced over the last few days. I wanted to share these important changes with you, as these will have implications for the international students and travellers.

Key Adjustments to Border Measures:

Omicron Variant: Effective December 1, 2021, Canada is expanding the list of countries subject to entry ban, first announced on November 26, 2021. Foreign nationals including international students who have been in any of these countries in the last 14 days will be denied entry to Canada: Botswana, Egypt, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. Over the next few days, all fully vaccinated travellers arriving by air from countries other than the United States will be tested upon arrival. Fully vaccinated travelers will also be quarantined pending the results of their arrival screening test. Unvaccinated travellers, with right of entry to Canada, will continue to be tested on arrival and day 8 and quarantine for 14 days.

As of November 30, 2021, Canada has expanded the list of COVID-19 vaccines that travellers can receive to be considered fully vaccinated for the purpose of travel to Canada. The additional vaccines are: Sinopharm, Sinovac and Covaxin, matching the World Health Organization Emergency Use Listing.

Starting January 15, 2022, international students 18 years and older will only be allowed to enter the country if they are fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved by Health Canada. Unvaccinated children (including students) under the age of 18 will be allowed to enter and remain in Canada, but must continue to follow testing, quarantine and other entry requirements.

For further details regarding the recent changes to border measures, including the travel requirements for travellers to Canada, please consult the following hyperlinks:

·  Media Release – November 30, 2021

· Media Release – November 19, 2021

·  Backgrounder – November 19, 2021