The Canadian Airport Council (CAC) this week praised the Government of Canada’s update today on the implementation of an internationally-recognized, national, standardized proof of vaccination requirement, but added more clarification is needed to restore air service quickly and safely.
The CAC noted that while 10 Canadian airports can now receive international flights, there are still about 20 airports with regular international flights prior to the pandemic that have not yet been given permission by the government to reopen to international traffic.
“These airports’ international access serves Canadians in many ways,” said Daniel-Robert Gooch, CAC president. “Some provide direct access to major tourism destinations. Others are regional gateways that open travel to more remote locations. Unfortunately, since the government has not provided a timeframe to reinstate international flights to these airports, we have heard that several airlines that specialize in winter holiday travel are cancelling flights to the end of the year.”
CAC also pointed out that some Canadian airports that offer U.S. pre-clearance are having bottleneck issues and called for the government to work with U.S. officials to ensure these resources are restored to pre-pandemic levels to rebuild our connectivity, tourism and trade.
Gooch also said government officials should begin to remove the testing requirement for fully vaccinated travelers, adding that complicating this issue further is the fact that people entering Canada from the U.S. by air will require proof of a negative COVID test, but not people entering by the land border. This could push Canadians to drive to a U.S. airport rather than fly out of Canada, he said.