How To Travel To Canada With A COPR During COVID

Thinking of how to travel to Canada with a COPR during COVID?

Canada’s border has reopened to approved permanent residents after a 15-month closure.

When they arrive at the border, these newcomers can now legally immigrate to Canada.

They will, however, be subject to the same public health measures that apply to all incoming travellers.

On June 21, 2021, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino will open Canada’s border to approved permanent residents.

Individuals who received their Confirmation of Permanent Residency (COPR) document after March 18, 2020, were not previously exempt from travel restrictions.

They needed to meet another exemption to complete the landing process. As a result, they were stuck in immigration limbo; they were not officially permanent residents despite having passed every other stage of the immigration process.

According to Canadian officials, there are approximately 23,000 COPR holders outside of Canada. Those with valid documents are now exempt from travel restrictions.

Furthermore, fully vaccinated travellers are exempt from the mandatory quarantine.

Of course, the border official has the final say on who gets to enter Canada. Preparing ahead of time can help to avoid unpleasant surprises.

The Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website contains official information as well as resources such as the online travel restrictions tool.

Additionally, travellers can contact the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) with specific questions.

That being said, here is some general information about How to Travel To Canada With A COPR During COVID.

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Can I Travel To Canada With A COPR During COVID? 

You can enter Canada if you are a fully vaccinated non-essential traveller.

If you have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 or have only been partially vaccinated, you can only enter Canada if you meet one of Canada’s travel restriction exemptions and meet Canada’s special travel requirements.

Individuals who have not been vaccinated may be able to cross the border into Canada:

  • Canadian citizens; Permanent residents; Those under the age of 18 who are visiting family or studying in Canada;
  • Individuals transiting through Canada on their way to another country;
  • Foreign nationals with a valid Certificate of Permanent Residency (COPR);
  • Ukrainian citizens;
  • Temporary foreign workers (only from agriculture or food processing);
  • Foreign nationals who enter Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds, such as terminal illness, serious injury, or death;
  • Commercial fishing vessels and their crews;
  • Accredited diplomats or members of their immediate families;
  • Residents of Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, France

Certain groups of travellers who were previously exempt from entry requirements will now be admitted to Canada only if they are fully vaccinated as of January 15, 2022, and they include:

  • Unvaccinated children under the age of 18 are still exempt if they are travelling to join an immediate or extended family member who is fully vaccinated, a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or a person registered under the Indian Act.
  • International students must be at least 18 years old.
  • Professional and amateur athletes; 
  • people with valid work permits, including temporary foreign workers (except in agriculture and agri-food);
  •  essential service providers, including truck drivers

What Should You Do Before Visiting Canada During COVID?

It goes without saying that travellers with COVID-19 symptoms should not attempt to cross the border.

It is also important to remember that each province will have its own public health measures, which will be posted on their respective government websites.

Arriving passengers can use the ArriveCAN app to upload documents such as the quarantine plan, proof of negative COVID tests, and other necessary documents. Throughout the pandemic, border officers have accepted travel documents in this manner.

Even if they are fully vaccinated, all travellers must plan their mandatory quarantine. The government provides a tool to help travellers determine whether their quarantine plan is adequate.

Officers at the border will typically want to see that travellers have a place to stay for 14 days.

They will also want to see the plan for obtaining food and other necessities. Furthermore, travellers must demonstrate that they are not endangering vulnerable people at their quarantine location.

Travellers over the age of five must present a negative test taken 72 hours before crossing the border. They must then take another test upon arrival.

Different border measures apply depending on whether you are travelling by land or by air. The main difference is that air travellers will have to wait at a government-approved hotel for the results of their on-arrival COVID test.

Upon arrival, the traveller’s journey will be determined by whether or not they have been fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved in Canada. There are four companies so far: Astra Zeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson.

Non-vaccinated passengers who flew in will have to wait in a hotel for the results of their on-arrival test.

They will also be required to take another COVID test on day eight of their quarantine. This step is optional for fully vaccinated travellers.

Fully Vaccinated COPRs Can Skip Quarantine

Beginning July 5 at 11:59 p.m. EDT, all exempt travellers to Canada will be subject to the new measure for fully vaccinated people. These visitors will simply have to quarantine themselves at home while they await the results of their COVID-19 test at the border.

Children who are not old enough to receive the vaccine must still quarantine at home for the entire 14-day period, even if their fully vaccinated parents do not.

They will, however, be exempt from the hotel quarantine requirement, which requires new arrivals to wait for the results of a test in a government-approved hotel. Non-vaccinated travellers must still comply with this requirement.

If possible, IRCC recommends that all family members listed on the permanent residency application travel to Canada at the same time.

What If My COPR Is No Longer Valid?

Border officials have refused to accept expired documents since before the pandemic. Because the COPR’s validity is linked to the holder’s medical exam, many of those issued after March 18 have already expired.

There are currently no instructions for COPR holders with expired documents, but the government website states that more information will be available soon.

According to IRCC, no one whose COPR expired as a result of the travel restrictions will have to reapply for Canadian immigration.

Instead, the government has promised a process for reissuing documents. According to the IRCC website, expired COPRs should not contact through the web form or the processing office email.

If you have already done so, an IRCC representative will investigate your request and provide you with further instructions.

Conclusion 

To travel to Canada with a COPR During COVID is possible but, there are a  lot of restrictions and guidelines that come with it to contain the pandemic.  Make sure you adhere to those guidelines.

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