Canada Sets Vaccine Requirement Date for Travelers

All people ages 12 and over traveling by train or rail must show proof of vaccination against COVID-19.

Following Canada's initial August announcement of a vaccine mandate, the country set the date of Oct. 30 for the requirement to go into effect.

All people ages 12 and over traveling by air or rail in Canada must show proof of vaccination against COVID-19. Currently, travelers who have only been partially vaccinated will be required to show proof of partial vaccination and test negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours of their trip. That policy, however, is set to expire Nov. 30.

"To depart from Canadian airports or travel on VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer trains, travelers will need to qualify as a fully vaccinated traveler," read a government announcement Wednesday. "The Government of Canada strongly advises any Canadians planning to travel by plane or train this holiday season to get vaccinated as soon as possible or they will be unable to travel."

Canadian officials will accept proof of vaccination with vaccines from Moderna, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Covishield, and Janssen/Johnson & Johnson.

"We're taking these steps to finish the fight against COVID-19, and we're using the most effective tool - vaccines - to get the job done," Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a Twitter thread discussing the mandate.

Travelers wearing face masks walk out of the arrivals hall at Toronto Pearson International Airport
Zou Zheng/Getty Images

So far, more than 82% of eligible Canadians have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine while more than 71% of Canadians have been fully vaccinated.

The U.S. has yet to require vaccination for travel, but several U.S.-based cruise lines have implemented a vaccine requirement.

Several popular cities, including San Francisco, New York, New Orleans, and Los Angeles are requiring proof of COVID vaccination for dining indoors, drinking inside bars, and at places like movie theaters, museums, and other indoor venues.

Meena Thiruvengadam is a Travel + Leisure contributor who has visited 50 countries on six continents and 47 U.S. states. She loves historic plaques, wandering new streets and walking on beaches. Find her on Facebook and Instagram.

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