Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Travel&Dining > Travel Health and Fitness > Coronavirus and travel
Reload this Page >

Crossing USA / Canada Border During COVID

Crossing USA / Canada Border During COVID

 
Old May 14, 20, 5:41 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Calgary, AB
Programs: AC SE 100k MM, SPG Platinum, Hilton, Hyatt Gold, Airmiles, AMEX
Posts: 144
Crossing USA / Canada Border During COVID

I'm not sure of a better forum for this question but just trying to understand if anyone here as flown across the border in both directions for work/business and what the experience has been. I have a couple things that I'm trying to accomplish here for business purpose including an in person TN Visa renewal, and in person meeting/interview in YVR from someone in USA. I have not been able to find any intel on this from searching
1) Inbound to Canada- are they asking for reason of visit, ie letter of invite from business, or work purpose beyond verbal? Are they asking for proof of 14 day residence /quarantine plan / return ticket?
2) Outbound to USA- basically same, what are the questions being asked of business travelers to USA?

I don't know anyone who has flown across the border for a while so any guidance here is appreciated,. Thank you.
coleo is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 5:58 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: YVR
Programs: AC*A
Posts: 476
Originally Posted by coleo
1) Inbound to Canada- are they asking for reason of visit, ie letter of invite from business, or work purpose beyond verbal? Are they asking for proof of 14 day residence /quarantine plan / return ticket?

I don't know anyone who has flown across the border for a while so any guidance here is appreciated,. Thank you.
You are required to report your address/plan for the two-week quarantine to the BSO or via the new app (
). Otherwise, PHAC will send you to a nearby hotel for the two week period.
Orcair is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 6:51 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Montreal & Nashville
Programs: Aeroplan SE100K, Accor Platinum, Bonvoy Titanium Elite, BW Diamond, Hertz President's Circle
Posts: 384
When I crossed I had a letter from the gov't agency that runs the plant where I was going to work saying the project was essential and any stay at home was not applicable. Then a letter from my employer proving I was working on that project.

I applied and got my L1 visa at the airport no issue.

Coming back when I drove to the border initially to get the visa (which they refused to give in advance), they took my name, address, phone and gave me a call the next day to make sure I knew about the quarantine rules.
theBeachBoy is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 7:01 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: YVR, HNL
Programs: AS 75k, UA peon, BA Bronze, AC E50k, Marriott Plat, HH Diamond, Fairmont Plat (RIP)
Posts: 7,722
Originally Posted by theBeachBoy
When I crossed I had a letter from the gov't agency that runs the plant where I was going to work saying the project was essential and any stay at home was not applicable. Then a letter from my employer proving I was working on that project.

I applied and got my L1 visa at the airport no issue.

Coming back when I drove to the border initially to get the visa (which they refused to give in advance), they took my name, address, phone and gave me a call the next day to make sure I knew about the quarantine rules.
It is different at land crossings. Only essential travel is permitted for land crossings. I believe the OP is asking about flying where there is no such restriction (although non-essential travel is still discouraged), just the 14 day self quarantine rules.
https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Artic...language=en_US
Finkface is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 7:57 pm
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Calgary, AB
Programs: AC SE 100k MM, SPG Platinum, Hilton, Hyatt Gold, Airmiles, AMEX
Posts: 144
Ok that app is new since I saw the page last, thanks for sharing. Yes I am talking about a YVR or YYZ crossing back to Canada. So at the airport, you can enter as NON-ESSENTIAL? I was not aware it is only land crossing. Do the BSOs take your info in and check up on you / phone / visit? Seems like an excessive use of resources or impossible task, but just trying to prepare the person coming in what to expect.
coleo is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 8:11 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: BKK/TYO/YYZ/YUL
Programs: DL, AC, Bonvoy, Accor, Hilton
Posts: 2,833
Originally Posted by Finkface
It is different at land crossings. Only essential travel is permitted for land crossings. I believe the OP is asking about flying where there is no such restriction (although non-essential travel is still discouraged), just the 14 day self quarantine rules.
https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Artic...language=en_US
There is no differentiation between air travel entry and at land border crossings. Non essential travel across the border by foreign nationals is forbidden by both the USA and Canada.

As per Air Canada for inbound -The Government of Canada has restricted non-essential travel of foreign nationals across its border, and therefore travel that is for optional, non-essential or discretionary purposes will not be permitted. Non-essential travel includes travelling for purposes such as tourism, sightseeing, recreation, entertainment, social visits and religious functions.

Your US link states;
On March 21, 2020, the U.S., Mexico, and Canada temporarily restricted non-essential travel across the US-Canada land borders. On April 20, 2020, all parties agreed to extend the restrictions on non-essential travel across their shared borders for 30 additional days.
Transpacificflyer is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 10:12 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 1,579
I know a coworker, who is a US Citizen married to a Canadian citizen, living in Seattle.

The canadian's mom got sick in Vancouver, so they both drove up. The US citizen was given a hard time at the border, and they had to prove where they would be able to quarantine for 14 days (at some airbnb they got) and some convincing on why exactly the us citizen needed to accompany their spouse, was it really essential (yes it was, the canadian was distraught over mom's sickness so couldn't drive safely).

In the end the Blaine road border folks did let them in, but it required some convincing and they did it as a favor.
nomiiiii is offline  
Old May 14, 20, 10:27 pm
  #8  
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: YVR, HNL
Programs: AS 75k, UA peon, BA Bronze, AC E50k, Marriott Plat, HH Diamond, Fairmont Plat (RIP)
Posts: 7,722
Originally Posted by Transpacificflyer
There is no differentiation between air travel entry and at land border crossings. Non essential travel across the border by foreign nationals is forbidden by both the USA and Canada.

As per Air Canada for inbound -The Government of Canada has restricted non-essential travel of foreign nationals across its border, and therefore travel that is for optional, non-essential or discretionary purposes will not be permitted. Non-essential travel includes travelling for purposes such as tourism, sightseeing, recreation, entertainment, social visits and religious functions.

Your US link states;
On March 21, 2020, the U.S., Mexico, and Canada temporarily restricted non-essential travel across the US-Canada land borders. On April 20, 2020, all parties agreed to extend the restrictions on non-essential travel across their shared borders for 30 additional days.
Unless I am mistaken, the OP is a Canadian citizen. He said one of the purposes is renewal of a TN visa. He will be allowed to board a flight and to enter Canada. He will be required to quarantine.
Finkface is offline  
Old May 15, 20, 6:27 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Canada
Programs: Aeroplan E50/MM, HH gold, Nat Exec Elite, Kimpton Karma
Posts: 2,245
At PM’s briefing yesterday first question raised the issue of the US partner of a pregnant woman refused entry. Border officials deemed his reason non-essential, according to reporter. Unable, therefore, to be present at upcoming birth. PM was unequivocal in his response — no non-essential travel.
Bartolo is offline  
Old May 15, 20, 7:19 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: EDI/GLA
Programs: DL 2 MM Unobtainum | UA 1.1MM Gold | MR Bonvoy Titanium
Posts: 2,198
Originally Posted by Bartolo
At PMs briefing yesterday first question raised the issue of the US partner of a pregnant woman refused entry. Border officials deemed his reason non-essential, according to reporter. Unable, therefore, to be present at upcoming birth. PM was unequivocal in his response no non-essential travel.
That seems a bit harsh but it is in the better interests of everyone.
Intl359Widget is offline  
Old May 15, 20, 12:07 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Montreal & Nashville
Programs: Aeroplan SE100K, Accor Platinum, Bonvoy Titanium Elite, BW Diamond, Hertz President's Circle
Posts: 384
Originally Posted by Finkface
It is different at land crossings. Only essential travel is permitted for land crossings. I believe the OP is asking about flying where there is no such restriction (although non-essential travel is still discouraged), just the 14 day self quarantine rules.
https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Artic...language=en_US
My outbound was at the airport and non-essential travel is not allowed.
theBeachBoy is offline  
Old May 15, 20, 8:16 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Toronto, Canada
Programs: Delta DM, Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond, National EE, AS MVP Gold 75K, AC 75K
Posts: 980
I flew to Tampa on Monday for work out of YYZ and flew back on Thursday. I have a TN Visa. No issues. I downloaded the ArriveCAN and submit my info.

While crossing to the US, the border agent just ask me if I'm going in with my TN. I said yes and I was on my way.

I don't know if they're still processing TN renewals, but getting through with a TN is no issues.

Just a reminder to check the state that you are going to does not have any quarantine requirements.

Last edited by GateGuardian; May 15, 20 at 8:28 pm
GateGuardian is offline  
Old May 16, 20, 7:09 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 57
Just looking for some clarification. I get that land border crossings into the USA from Canada are for essential only. For air crossings (flying from Canada to the USA), is non-essential allowed? This website https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Artic...language=en_US only seems to talk about the land border and I have read somewhere else that the ban of non-essential travel only applies to land border and not when flying by air?
avgeek9995 is offline  
Old May 16, 20, 7:13 am
  #14  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Canada, USA, Europe
Programs: UA 1K
Posts: 31,452
Originally Posted by coleo
I'm not sure of a better forum for this question but just trying to understand if anyone here as flown across the border in both directions for work/business and what the experience has been. I have a couple things that I'm trying to accomplish here for business purpose including an in person TN Visa renewal, and in person meeting/interview in YVR from someone in USA. I have not been able to find any intel on this from searching
1) Inbound to Canada- are they asking for reason of visit, ie letter of invite from business, or work purpose beyond verbal? Are they asking for proof of 14 day residence /quarantine plan / return ticket?
2) Outbound to USA- basically same, what are the questions being asked of business travelers to USA?

I don't know anyone who has flown across the border for a while so any guidance here is appreciated,. Thank you.
Originally Posted by avgeek9995
Just looking for some clarification. I get that land border crossings into the USA from Canada are for essential only. For air crossings (flying from Canada to the USA), is non-essential allowed? This website https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Artic...language=en_US only seems to talk about the land border and I have read somewhere else that the ban of non-essential travel only applies to land border and not when flying by air?
Non-essential travel is currently not permitted. The border is closed. Neither of these seem to be of an essential nature.
LondonElite is offline  
Old May 16, 20, 3:29 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: YVR, HNL
Programs: AS 75k, UA peon, BA Bronze, AC E50k, Marriott Plat, HH Diamond, Fairmont Plat (RIP)
Posts: 7,722
Originally Posted by LondonElite
Non-essential travel is currently not permitted. The border is closed. Neither of these seem to be of an essential nature.
Are you certain about this? Land borders are closed to all but essential travel. Where does it says air travel is restricted? And note, I personally have flown transborder since the original announcement was made. I only needed to answer the health and quarantine questions.

https://ca.usembassy.gov/travel-rest...ns-fact-sheet/

Borders with Canada

  • On April 20, the United States and Canada announced a mutual agreement to extend restrictions on non-essential travel across our shared border for an additional 30 days.
Q: What will this mean for airline travel and other travel across the border?
A: This action does not apply to air, rail, or sea travel at this time, but does apply to commuter rail and ferry travel.

And as the previous poster notes, the CBP fact sheet references only land crossing as well.
https://help.cbp.gov/s/article/Artic...language=en_US
Finkface is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

This site is owned, operated, and maintained by MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Designated trademarks are the property of their respective owners.