Canada has become the latest country to eliminate pre-departure testing, with fully vaccinated travellers no longer required to take a test from 1 April 2022 onwards.
Today, the Government of Canada announced that effective April 1, 2022 at 12:01 AM EDT, fully vaccinated travellers will no longer need to provide a pre-entry COVID-19 test result to enter Canada by air, land or water.
Fully vaccinated travellers seeking to arrive in Canada before April 1, 2022, must still have a valid pre-entry test.
-Government of Canada
While random testing of arrivals to track the emergence of COVID-19 variants will continue, for the vast majority, travel to Canada will soon be completely testing free.
Canada scraps pre-departure test requirement for vaccinated travellers
Currently, travellers to Canada are required to submit proof of a negative COVID-19 pre-departure test, which can be either:
- A PCR test taken within 72 hours of the scheduled departure time to Canada
- A professionally-administered ART taken within one day of the scheduled departure time to Canada
Alternatively, recovered travellers can present a positive PCR test result taken at least 10 and no more than 180 days before entering Canada. Children under 5 years of age are exempt from the testing requirement.
From 1 April 2022, the pre-departure test requirement will be scrapped for all fully vaccinated travellers, regardless of origin. Random COVID-19 testing may still be done on arrival. However, this will be free of charge, and there will be no need to quarantine while awaiting for the rest result.
Travellers to Canada must complete ArriveCAN (which requires uploading proof of vaccination) within 72 hours of their departure, and present an ArriveCAN receipt with the letter I, V or A beside their name.
Which vaccines are recognised?
Canada recognises the following vaccines:
- AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD (ChAdOx1-S, Vaxzevria, AZD1222)
- Bharat Biotech (Covaxin, BBV152 A, B, C)
- Janssen/Johnson & Johnson
- Moderna (mRNA-1273)
- Novavax (NVX-COV2373, Nuvaxovid, Covovax)
- Pfizer-BioNTech (Comirnaty, tozinameran, BNT162b2) including for children aged 5 to 11 years
- Sinopharm BIBP (BBIBP-CorV)
- Sinovac (CoronaVac, PiCoVacc)
To qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller, you must have received, at least 14 calendar days by the day you travel:
- at least 2 doses of a vaccine accepted by the Government of Canada for the purpose of travel
- or a mix of 2 accepted vaccines
- or at least 1 dose of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine
There is no booster requirement at the moment.
Singapore-Canada travel: Total testing costs
|⚕️ Testing: Singapore-Canada Travel|
|🇨🇦 Canada||2 days before departure (ART/PCR)||C$79*|
|🇸🇬 Singapore||Within 24h of arrival (self-ART)||~S$5*|
|*Children aged 2 and under exempt|
From 1 April 2022, round-trip travellers from Singapore to Canada will only need to do two COVID-19 tests, both of which are required by the Singapore side.
A pre-departure antigen test at Vancouver airport will cost C$79, so travellers can expect to pay ~S$90 in total per person for testing.
VTL flights from Canada
Singapore Airlines resumed service to Canada with flights to Vancouver in December 2021, ending a 12-year absence. This was initially designated as a seasonal route, but has since been upgraded to year-round operation.
Travellers can take any flight they wish to Canada, but must return to Singapore on a VTL flight in order to avoid a 7-day SHN on arrival.
The following VTL flights are operated from Vancouver:
- Till 26 March 2022: SQ27, SQ29
- From 27 March to 31 May 2022: SQ27
- From 2 June to 29 October 2022: SQ47
If you’re looking to redeem miles, do note that Vancouver is currently available on Spontaneous Escapes, with Economy and Business Class awards going at 30% off.
|SIN to YVR||N/A|
|Blackout dates: 26-31 May 2022|
|YVR to SIN|
|Blackout dates: N/A|
VTL travel to Singapore
|✔️ VTL Eligibility Criteria|
|Short-term visitors & Work permit holders|
|*Children aged 2 or under in the current calendar year are exempt|
^Exception for children aged 12 and below, if they are accompanied by vaccinated traveller
VTL travellers to Singapore are required to take a pre-departure ART/PCR test within 2 days of departure to Singapore, as well as a designated VTL flight.
On arrival, they must perform a self-administered ART within 24 hours of arrival and report the result via sync.gov.sg before proceeding with their activities in Singapore:
- Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents and Long-Term Pass Holders (LTPHs) with SingPass accounts should login to Sync with SingPass to submit results
- LTPHs and short-term visitors without SingPass accounts should login to Sync with their passport number, date of birth and nationality to submit results
Fully vaccinated individuals can be exempted from all pre-departure tests, on-arrival tests and the need to take a VTL flight to Singapore with acceptable proof of a COVID-19 infection/recovery within the last 90 days.
Big news: No more SHN, testing or “14-day stranding” for recently-recovered vaccinated travellers to Singapore
While complicated, the VTL is already living on borrowed time, and it’s highly likely we’ll see a simplified system soon based purely on vaccination status.
Canada will be scrapping its pre-departure test requirement for fully vaccinated travellers from 1 April 2022. This restores travel to more or less pre-COVID conditions, although random testing on arrival is still possible.
It ties in nicely with Singapore Airlines’ discounted awards for travel to Vancouver in April and May. Be sure to check these deals out in my Spontaneous Escapes article.
Will 2022 be the year where pesky testing requirements finally disappear for vaccinated travellers? Let’s hope.