Canada has now expanded its border control measures beyond the previous November 26 ban on travellers from Southern Africa.

The Canadian Government says the Omicron variant of Coronavirus has been found in a number of travel-related cases in Canada. It has now banned travellers from 10 countries, plus any travellers who have been in the listed 10 countries in the 14 days prior to travelling to Canada.

However, Canadian citizens, permanent residents and people with status under the ‘Indian Act’ are permitted to enter Canada from these 10 countries, regardless of their vaccination status or if they had a previous history of testing positive for COVID-19. For these travellers, there is a new testing regime that includes the requirement for them to produce a negative PCR test certificate from a test in a third (transit) country before continuing onward to Canada.

According to the Canadian Government website, canada.ca, since December 1, foreign nationals who have been in any of the following countries within the previous 14 days are not permitted entry into Canada: Botswana; Egypt; Eswatini; Lesotho; Malawi; Mozambique; Namibia; Nigeria; South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Passengers from these countries, who are permitted to enter Canada due to their citizenship, visa status etc, must comply with the following:

*Obtain, within 72 hours of departure, a valid negative COVID-19 molecular test in a third country before continuing their journey to Canada.

*Complete testing upon arrival to Canada, regardless of their vaccination status or having had a previous history of testing positive for COVID-19.

*Vaccinated travellers arriving by air from departure points other than the US will be subject to arrival testing and these passengers will be required to quarantine while they await the results of their arrival test. The waiting time for the test result is unknown.

*Unvaccinated travellers with right of entry to Canada, will continue to be tested on arrival and on day 8, and be required to quarantine for 14 days. Those arriving by air will now be required to stay in a designated quarantine facility while they await the result of their arrival test.

Testing in transit in Paris

Air France has notified the South African trade of the requirement for Canada-bound passengers to get a PCR test while in transit at Paris CDG. The facility is only for AF/KL passengers travelling via CDG to Canada.

The airline advises that Canada-bound pax will still need to hold a negative PCR test and/or Antigen test as is applicable at the time, for boarding Air France flights from Johannesburg or Cape Town.

*The test at CDG must be booked online – this is important, as passengers may need to change their date of travel if no slots are open.

*The facility is only open on certain days of the week at specific time slots.

*The testing at CDG applies only for those eligible for entry into Canada, such as Nationals and permanent residents, as per the entry rule for Canada.

*In order to access the testing facility, passengers have to show proof of the appointment made at the facility for the testing in transit.

*Approximately two hours are needed for the swab test before boarding the onward flight. The airline suggests the booking be made with a three-hour or longer connecting time.

*The testing centre is Centre Cerballiance, in the Transit Area – CDG Terminal 2E (located in area K27).

*Operating hours: 

Monday                   06h00 to 13h30

Tuesday                  12h00 to 13h30

Wednesday             06h00 to 21h00

Thursday                 05h00 to 13h30 

Friday                      12h00 to 13h30

Saturday                 12h00 to 13h30

Sunday                    06h00 to 13h30

Go to: https://www.parisaeroport.fr/en/passengers/services/book-a-service/tests-canada

Source: https://www.travelnews.co.za/article/canada-bound-sas-test-transit