Canada to Require Proof of a Negative COVID-19 Test for Land Border Crossings

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The new land border requirement mirrors Canada's international flight travel safety protocols. 

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Canada further cracked down on travel across its borders Tuesday when the country's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that all who travel into Canada via a land border are required to show a negative COVID-19 test.

"As of February 15th, when you return to Canada through a land border, you'll need to show a negative PCR test result from the past 72 hours," Trudeau tweeted. "Just like you would if you were flying back into the country."

While the land border between the U.S. and Canada remains closed to non-essential travel until at least Feb. 21, there are several notable exceptions, including essential trade as well as a loophole allowing people to drive through Canada to or from Alaska.

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The new land border requirement is an expansion of the country's efforts to enforce stricter international travel protocols, including mandating those flying into Canada show a negative test taken within 72 hours of their departure and self-isolate for 14 days. Soon, travelers will also have to be tested a second time upon arrival and quarantine in a hotel for up to three days.

All incoming international flights will be required to land at either the Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, or Montreal airports, according to the government.

To further discourage travel, several major Canadian airlines have suspended flights to the Caribbean and Mexico through at least April 30.

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Additionally, Canada extended a ban on cruise ships last week until at least February 2022, ensuring even fewer travelers will look to visit the country. The ban applies to all ships carrying more than 100 people as well as smaller ships in Arctic waters and Arctic coastal waters.

Officials in Alaska, however, have vowed to find a workaround since a 100-year-old law currently requires big foreign-flagged ships (like Royal Caribbean, for example) to stop in Canada before heading north.