Why $2,000 for a resort quarantine? Your questions about Ottawa’s new travel policies answered

It's unclear yet when exactly air passengers landing in Canada will be required to take a COVID-19 test and check into a quarantine hotel.

© Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press
It’s unclear nevertheless when precisely air passengers landing in Canada will be required to just take a COVID-19 test and examine into a quarantine resort.

Baffled about Ottawa’s rigorous new regulations created to discourage journey during the COVID-19 pandemic?

You happen to be not alone.

Just after the federal authorities declared the new travel steps on Jan. 29, CBC Information was flooded with emails from Canadians wanting to know additional — including how Ottawa came up with a $2,000 hotel quarantine bill.

So much, the federal government has presented only wide specifics about the new rules, but it promises to provide additional details in the coming times.

This is what we know now.

Air passenger rules stated

Some of the government’s new travel measures are now in location. On Jan. 31, Canada’s key airlines — in an settlement with Ottawa — cancelled all flights to Mexico and the Caribbean until finally April 30.

Numerous American airlines nonetheless fly from Canada to these places, but travellers will come across at minimum 1 U.S. stopover alongside the way.

Canada’s airlines are however flying to the United States, for the reason that essential staff will need to vacation involving Canada and the U.S. in the course of the pandemic, Transport Canada advised CBC News on Thursday.

Canada-certain passengers must supply evidence of a adverse COVID-19 check before boarding their flight, and all flights getting into the country are now getting funnelled into four important airports in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver.

According to the governing administration, most air travellers entering Canada will quickly be necessary to acquire another COVID-19 examination on arrival and hold out for the effects — up to 3 days — in a designated hotel. Travellers who check negative can depart and finish the rest of their 14-day quarantine at dwelling.

People with optimistic test results will be essential to remain at a specified governing administration facility. 

What about the cost?

Travellers will be billed for their resort continue to be, and Ottawa has proposed the expense could be about $2,000. It can be unclear if two folks sharing a area would have to pay out double that quantity.

Numerous individuals have questioned how a a few-day remain in a resort could overall $2,000. The governing administration says the total would also cover related expenses, these types of as the expense of the check, transportation, resort security and extra well being protections for resort staff. Presumably, foods would be involved as effectively.

“It truly is not just simply the value of a lodge space,” General public Safety Minister Invoice Blair reported on Jan. 29.

He reported travellers should not balk at the price tag tag.

“We consider that if they’re heading to make that decision [to travel], that they really should bear the entire value and duty of all the actions that are needed to hold Canadians harmless.”

Any exceptions to the rule?

The government has claimed that there will be “limited exceptions” to the resort quarantine requirement, but it hasn’t however laid out who will be exempt. At a news convention on Tuesday, Primary Minister Justin Trudeau instructed that there could be some wiggle space for intense circumstances.

“Naturally, there may possibly be distinct compassionate or humanitarian exceptions that have to be created in offered scenarios, and we are going to search at individuals,” he mentioned.

Some snowbirds who have now acquired the COVID-19 vaccine in Florida have questioned CBC News if they’re going to be exempt from the resort quarantine prerequisite.

Ottawa suggests no, at the very least not at this time.

Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief community health officer, said on Friday that it is unclear if vaccinated individuals can continue to get the virus devoid of producing symptoms and then infect some others.

“The scientific theory underpinning the software of vaccines for global journey simply cannot be built at this time, simply because we do not know if the vaccines lessen transmission,” she advised CBC News.

When will the lodge quarantine rule get impact?

The start out day is nevertheless up in the air. 

Transportation Minister Omar Alghabra proposed last Sunday that air passengers could be ushered into accommodations as early as Feb. 4.

But on Feb. 2, Trudeau indicated that it could be months in advance of the hotel quarantine requirement can take result.

“We hope to have that executed in just the month — weeks to appear,” he mentioned in French at a information conference. “Persons are performing really tough to produce a process so that it is recognized ahead of people start off travelling for the March split.”

What occurs if I refuse to comply?

In a information launch asserting the new vacation measures, the govt also laid out the fines for breaking the country’s quarantine need. Violators could encounter severe penalties, like 6 months in jail and/or up to $750,000 in fines. 

What about the land border?

Due to the fact the Canada-U.S. land border is shut to non-crucial site visitors, most of the people today at this time crossing into Canada by land are critical personnel who are exempt from quarantine.

But some snowbirds who flew to U.S. sunbelt states this wintertime shipped their automobiles throughout the border and system to generate back again dwelling.

At this position, the lodge quarantine rule is not going to use to travellers crossing into Canada by land. But the federal government has indicated it can be operating on more durable guidelines at the land border, these types of as a COVID-19 exam need for non-crucial travellers.

“We’re also hunting at ways to even further bolster our land border measures,” Trudeau reported on Friday. “We are going to have extra to announce on this quickly.”