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How can I find out if I am allowed to travel outside Canada?

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The rules about travelling outside Canada are changing all the time: where do you get correct information about going abroad?

The first thing we should say is that the Government of Canada advises against all non-essential travel outside Canada. But if your journey abroad is truly necessary then there are a few things you need to know before you go.

Check the advisories before you travel during the pandemic

Many countries have covid-19 under control better than others. Almost no-where is back to normal, and wherever you go you can expect some degree of disruption.

In badly affected places you may find that you are very restricted at your destination: you may not be allowed to travel around the country you are visiting; you may have to quarantine or isolate on arrival. It might not be possible to access essential products and services in the country you are visiting. This includes healthcare: in some places health services are overstretched and you may not be able to see a healthcare professional if you become ill.

You may also need a negative covid-19 test result before you can enter some countries.

To find the latest information about your destination, use the Canadian Government’s Official Travel Advisories. You may also want to check local sources to find out what to expect.

See a travel health professional before you go

We prefer to see travellers six to eight weeks before they leave on their trip. During this travel health appointment you can arrange to have any vaccinations you might need to protect yourself from illness at your destination. We understand that in these strange times many people will be travelling at very short notice. Come and see us anyway: some vaccines can be given on an accelerated schedule, and imperfect protection from traveller’s diseases like Japanese encephalitis is still better than no protection. We can also give advice on reducing your exposure to insect-borne diseases.

Check your travel health insurance

During the pandemic your travel insurance may not cover you for expenses in case you need healthcare or evacuation. Pick up the phone and give your insurer a call to check the details of your policy and to arrange any extra cover you might need.

Ask your airline before you fly

Flying is likely to be a very different experience from the one you are used to. Before you leave check what advice your airline has for you; and the airport you are leaving from and arriving at may also have some requirements. Visit their websites to learn more.

Be prepared for disruption and delays

Covid-19 restrictions and precautions may cause delays and disruption to your travel plans. For example, what would happen if you found yourself unexpectedly quarantined? Think ahead to ensure that you have a back-up plan; and that you have enough medication to cover a trip that is longer than expected.

You will also need to quarantine on returning to Canada, too.

Note that restrictions may be changed at any time with no notice.

You will need to get a test before you return to Canada

From 7 January 2021 anyone aged five or over returning to Canada will need a negative PCR test result. The test must be taken no more than 72 hours before boarding the return flight to Canada. You will need to organize this test yourself at your destination. You will still have to quarantine on entering Canada, too.

The Government of Canada has more details about testing and negative results for air travelers coming in to Canada.

Where can I get travel vaccinations in Calgary?

If you need an appointment at a travel clinic in Calgary, turn to Canadian Travel Clinics. It is quick and easy to book online.