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FAQ: I Can't Get the Covid Vaccine - How Can I Enter Canada If I'm Not Fully Vaccinated?

Blog posted on by Evelyn Ackah in Coronavirus - COVID

FAQ: I Can't Get the Covid Vaccine - How Can I Enter Canada If I'm Not Fully Vaccinated?

Canada requires ALL travellers entering by air, land and sea to be fully vaccinated against Covid to cross the border. If you are an immigrant who now has Canadian citizenship (including dual citizens) but have been out of the country and want to return to Canada but do not qualify for the Covid vaccine, you must follow COVID-19 testing and quarantine requirements to enter Canada. Our law firm is frequently asked how someone can enter Canada if not fully vaccinated. Any not fully vaccinated traveller and accompanying unvaccinated children must meet Canada Covid traveller testing, ArriveCAN and quarantine requirements.

Canada's unvaccinated traveller border entry requirements have not changed, but many people mistakenly think the pandemic is over and cross border travel has returned to pre-pandemic standards.

Travellers who are not fully vaccinated - including Canadian citizens - and accompanying unvaccinated children must meet Canada Covid traveller testing, ArriveCAN and quarantine requirements.

Note: In very limited circumstances, you may be exempt from some requirements if the purpose of your travel is related to special situations.

Failure to comply with testing and quarantine requirements includes fines up to $5000, jail time and other penalties deemed appropriate.

Calgary immigration lawyer Evelyn Ackah, Founder and Managing Lawyer at Ackah Business Immigration Law, cautions immigrants:

The risk in not following Covid testing and quarantine requirements is very severe for immigrants and a serious offence under Canada's Quarantine Act. You not only face a big fine or jail time - you also risk losing your passport!

Requirements for Entering Canada If You Are Not Fully Vaccinated

Checklist for Entering Canada By Air. Land, Water or Ferry

Canada has a website to find out if you are qualified to enter Canada with a checklist to follow if you are unvaccinated including:

  • pre-entry testing
  • reporting
  • Day 8 testing


Travellers who are not fully vaccinated must quarantine for 14 days to limit the spread of COVID-19 and variants in Canada. The quarantine plan must be entered into ArriveCAN. Your quarantine period begins on the day you arrive in Canada.


Anyone - citizens, permanent residents, visitors, students, foreign nationals - arriving by air to enter Canada as a final destination must use paperless ArriveCAN to submit their pre-entry test results, contact and travel details and quarantine information. Travellers arriving by land or sea are strongly encouraged to use ArriveCAN to expedite processing.

The Government of Canada uses the information you provided in ArriveCAN to telephone or personally visit you and verify that you:

  • arrived at your place of quarantine
  • are providing daily symptom reports

Don't Get Turned Away at the Border!

Do You Have Questions About Travel to Canada?
Contact Ackah Law BEFORE You Travel

An experienced Canadian immigration lawyer can save you time and stress - and prevent costly mistakes and missed deadlines. With 50+ years of combined immigration experience, our immigration legal team can identify and resolve potential problems BEFORE they happen. Contact Ackah Business Immigration Law today to discuss your situation at 403-452‑9515.

Evelyn L. Ackah, BA, LL.B.

Founder/Managing Lawyer

Ms. Ackah is passionate about immigration law because it focuses on people and relationships, which are at the core of her personal values. Starting her legal career as a corporate/commercial ...

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I very much appreciate the service rendered to me by Ackah Law. As a Canadian citizen abroad, I had a question about returning to Canada after decades of absence. My question was answered promptly, courteously, and correctly, with plenty of detail to help me plan my next move. This service is absolutely top notch. You won’t go wrong contacting Ackah Law for your immigration needs.

Wayne H.

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