Relocate to Canada – What you must know about moving to Canada during COVID-19 (updated 2021)

 In Relocation Tips

(This article was updated on 8 June 2021)

Although the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic may have disrupted the many routines of everyone around us, moving is not always something that can be delayed. Perhaps you are planning to move to Canada during this period, but you are not entirely sure about this relocation process.

Fret not! We will be sharing more details, from what you must note before moving to Canada, to what you must do upon arrival in the country. Read on!

Before You Move to Canada

In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, do note that flights from India and Pakistan to Canada are being suspended as of 22 April 2021. Other regulations and restrictions have also been implemented and it is crucial that you follow the following requirements before you enter Canada. Before the move, you will be required to assess your quarantine plan, get your pre-arrival COVID-19 test (more details will be shared below), reserve your 3 night hotel stopover and use ArriveCAN to submit your travel and quarantine plans.

Unless you are exempted from mandatory testing and quarantine requirements, you must meet the pre-arrival testing requirements. All travellers, who are at least 5 years old, regardless of citizenship, must provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test result. It is crucial that you take the test within 72 hours of your scheduled departure time of your flight to Canada, provide one of the accepted types of tests and keep the proof of your test results for the entire duration of your 14-day quarantine.

The paper or electronic proof of your test result must include your name, date of birth, name and civic address of the facility that administered this test, date on which the test was conducted, type of test being conducted, as well as the test result itself. This proof must be shown even if you were being tested negative prior to the 72-hour period, have been vaccinated for COVID-19, and/or recovered from COVID-19 previously.

Apart from getting the required above-mentioned documents and information ready, you should also ensure you have settled the following:

    1. Getting a valid visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)
    2. Hiring a reliable international mover
    3. Finding suitable accommodation upon your arrival

In light of the evolving COVID-19 situation, there may be unprecedented delays in the relocation process, thus the need for sufficient planning beforehand to ensure informed decisions can be made. But good news! At Moovaz, we have dedicated Relo Buddies who are here with you at every step throughout your moving journey, making it fuss-free, hassle-free and worry-free on your end. Check out our article on how to ease moving for the whole family here!

If you are a visa-exempt traveller, you are required to have an eTA before boarding your flight to Canada. However, if you are entering by land or sea, an eTA is not required. On the other hand, if you are not visa-exempted, you will require a visa to enter Canada by any method of travel. In most cases, you have to present a valid visitor visa or eTA upon arrival. For more information concerning visa and citizenship, do check out our insider guide here.

After obtaining a valid visa or an eTA, it is now time to plan the logistics of your move! It is highly recommended to engage a reliable international mover and book your packing day early to avoid any disappointments and counter any possibility of delays due to the constantly evolving COVID-19 regulations. Additionally, we have also compiled a list of the most important things you should carry along with you here.

We also recommend you to start looking for accommodations early, so that you have a place to live in upon your arrival. Depending on your preferences and needs, you may decide between a short or a long term accommodation. In fact, when it comes to housing rental, there are several types of rental accommodations available, including houses, condominiums and apartments. Similarly, purchasing a property is rather straightforward as well. Their open-door housing policy makes it relatively easy for foreigners to buy properties, and all of which are considered pretty affordable compared to other global locations. Do check out our guide here for further information.

Due to the COVID-19 regulations, some business operations may be affected, which may result in potential delays and transit time for the relocation journey to Canada. We seek your patience if you experience any delayed responses from the vendors you choose to engage in for your move. Do also prepare documents for clearance, especially for goods and personnel entering the country, due to COVID-19 screenings or regulations imposed by Canada. Click here for some tips to make your relocation trouble- and worry-free!

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Arrival in Canada

Upon your arrival, you should have your ArriveCAN receipt, test results, hotel confirmation and quarantine plans ready for assessment by a Border Services Officer. You will also be subjected to the COVID-19 entry screening before being allowed to leave the airport. At that time, you will also get a COVID-19 At Home Specimen Collection Kit to use for your test on Day 8 of your mandatory quarantine.

Following which, you are required to go directly to your reserved hotel and wait for the test results. There are some exemptions from arrival testing, and certain circumstances allow for alternative testing protocols upon arrival. Although you can register for this test on the day of your arrival at the airport, we suggest that you register in advance with the following testing providers: Biron Groupe Sante (Montreal), Switch Health (Toronto), Government of Alberta (Calgary), LifeLabs (Vancouver) to speed up the testing procedure.

The following table lists the next steps you can take, based on your arrival test results.

If your arrival test is negative1. You can check out of the hotel, and go directly to your quarantine location to complete the remainder of your quarantine period

2. Note that you are still required to complete a test on Day 8 of your quarantine
If your arrival test is positive1. Stay in your room

2. Wait for a call from an official from the Public Health Agency of Canada
If your arrival test is invalid or indeterminate1. Stay in your room

2. You are required to complete another test
a. Call the Government Authorized Accommodation Information Line for further instructions (details are provided in your hotel information package)
If you are still waiting for a result after 72 hours1. Stay in your room

2. Contact your test provider
a. If they are unable to provide your results, call the Government Authorized Accommodation Information Line for further instructions (details are provided in your hotel information package)

On Day 8 of your mandatory quarantine, follow the instructions provided by Switch Health to complete your test.

If your Day-8 test is negative1. You can leave your place of quarantine provided that you complete your mandatory quarantine
If your Day-8 test is positive1. You must isolate yourself from others immediately, for a period of 14 days (starting from the time you took the test with positive results)

2. Note that you will be called up by a government representative for further instructions
If your Day-8 test is invalid or indeterminate1. You must complete another test, which will be automatically delivered by Switch Health

a.Contact them immediately to ensure that another test kit has been sent

2. You must stay in quarantine until your repeat test result is negative
If your Day-8 test is unknown1. Contact Switch Health directly

2. You must stay in quarantine until you receive a negative result from your Day-8 test

Conclusion

Now that you have all the information needed to relocate to Canada during COVID-19, you can Start your relocation journey with our Relo Buddies today!

Want to get the latest global mobility news concerning the pandemic? Check out our COVID-19 Global Mobility updates.

 (Note: Information has been compiled from the following official website Canada.ca, and our Canada country guide)

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