Planning a trip outside of Canada in the near or not-so-distant future?
No matter what way you plan to return to Canada, there is one thing you must do: enter your information into ArriveCAN.
What happens if you don't submit your travel information to ArriveCAN before you enter the country?
You may be denied boarding a plane or a cruise ship or denied crossing the border by land; you could also be fined a whopping $5,000.
Canadians who plan on travelling should download the app before they leave the country; there are several steps you must follow in order to complete the process and you might not have some of the information while you are abroad.
The mobile app is free and is available in English, French and Spanish (displayed in the language of your device). You'll need to submit your final information within 72 hours before your arrival in Canada.
If you are selected for random coronavirus testing at the airport, you must keep your ArriveCAN e-receipt number until your test is complete. If you arrived by air, you should also keep the email notification.
Here's everything you need to consider about your ArriveCAN application.
You must enter your up-to-date contact information must be filled in
You'll need to submit your full name and date of birth as per your passport, your passport number, and your contact information (i.e. email address, home address, and phone number).
You must provide your complete travel itinerary
ArriveCAN will ask for your purpose of travel and you'll need to state what countries you visited. It will also include the date and time of arrival to Canada, your flight number, and airline.
This information must include the countries you stayed in or visited 14 days prior to your arrival in Canada but not if you only stopped in them via connecting flights.
You must have proof of vaccination
You'll need to have a physical copy of your vaccine records to prove that you received a full course of a Health Canada-approved vaccine (i.e. two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine). The app will ask you to submit photo evidence of the record and will also ask you to fill out where and when you received each dose.
If you do not qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller, but are allowed to enter Canada, you must submit a pre-entry test result.
You must have a quarantine plan
Regardless of your vaccination status, all travellers must have a suitable quarantine plan in place for their arrival in Canada.
This means you must be able to stay there for 14 days and have access to the necessities of life (i.e. food, water, medication, heat, etc) and avoid other people who weren't travelling with you.
What if I don't have a smartphone?
No smartphone, no problem. ArriveCAN is available on a desktop computer and you may print off a receipt that confirms your submission.
Print your receipt and take it with you when you travel.
Do I need to use ArriveCAN app if I'm passing through Canada to another country?
No. Travellers who have a stopover in Canada and do not leave the airport are not required to submit this information as long as they:
- are transiting through:
- Vancouver International Airport
- Toronto Pearson International Airport
- Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport
- Calgary International Airport
These travellers must stay in secure transit areas that separate them from other passengers and goods. If they leave this area, they must submit their information into the app and see a CBSA officer for examination.
Information for travellers to airports in Vancouver and Toronto
Travellers arriving at Vancouver International Airport (YVR) and Lester B. Pearson International Airport (YYZ) can save time by using the new "Advance CBSA Declaration" optional feature in ArriveCAN.
Travellers to these two airports may submit their customs and immigration declaration in advance of arrival, reducing the amount of time they spend in the airport.
The Advance CBSA Declaration optional feature is available on the ArriveCAN app and on the web version.
In order to use it, enter your mandatory travel and health information and then follow the prompt on your receipt page.
To submit an Advance CBSA Declaration for yourself or your group before your trip, you must:
- confirm travel document information
- answer the customs and immigration questions truthfully
- send the declaration within 72 hours of arriving in Canada
You will receive confirmation of your Advance CBSA Declaration, including your reference number, by email.
When your flight lands, you must:
- scan your travel document(s) at the airport kiosk or eGate where available (note a maximum of 5 travellers can use one kiosk at a time, and one traveller can use one eGate at a time – travellers using eGates must be 16 years of age or more)
- the kiosk/eGate will retrieve your declaration information
- review and edit your declaration (if required) then submit your final declaration to the CBSA
- take the kiosk or eGate receipt to a border services officer for further processing
Another travel time-saving tip
Transport Canada encourages frequent travellers to take advantage of the “saved traveller” feature in ArriveCAN. By doing this, an individual's travel documents and proof of vaccination are saved in the app for reuse.
The next time you need to book travel, your information will be pre-populated, which makes it faster and more convenient.