NBC Montana: Travel requirements at Canada border to be lifted in October
MISSOULA, Mont. — The government of Canada announced COVID-19 border and travel measures will be lifted Oct. 1. It marks the reopening to unvaccinated travelers for the first time since the worldwide coronavirus vaccination campaign began.
Modeling indicates Canada has passed the peak of the omicron BA.4 and BA.5 waves. Officials also tout a high vaccination rate.
Transport Canada is removing existing travel requirements, including health checks for air and rail and masking.
Non-U.S. citizens traveling into the U.S. by air, sea or land still need to be fully vaccinated. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention requires full vaccination for non-U.S. citizens before boarding a flight, with limited exceptions for children under 18, people traveling for foreign government work and people with certain medical conditions that prevent them from receiving a vaccine.
Both Montana U.S. Sens. Steve Daines and Jon Tester commented on the news at the border, urging the U.S. to also drop requirements.
“Finally. President Biden needs to follow suit immediately for the sake of Montana truck drivers and travelers,” said Daines.
Tester weighed in with this statement: “Truck drivers and the goods they transport are the lifeblood of our economy. This is especially true in northern border states, like Montana, that have a special trading relationship with Canada,” Tester wrote to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. “Fertilizer, hay, and other agricultural products from Canada are critical for farmers and ranchers in Montana and across America. Vaccine mandates for truck drivers, along with reduced hours at ports of entry, longer drive times, and a shortage of truck drivers are making it harder and more expensive for American farmers and ranchers to get the products they need,” said Tester. “I urge [the Department of Homeland Security] to end the vaccine mandate for truck drivers and other travelers entering the United States, and to work with Canadian officials to end all mandates in a coordinated fashion.”
There is no word on whether the U.S. will also drop travel requirements.