The Canadian government is still only randomly testing fully vaccinated international travelers upon arrival, despite announcing in November that all travelers entering from outside the U.S. would be required to take a COVID-19 molecular test upon arrival.
“We have full confidence that this is going to unroll quickly over the next few days,” Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos said of the plan at a news conference on Nov. 30.
At the time, the federal government said it devised the new testing policy to help stop the spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant. But more than 30 days later, all fully vaccinated travelers to Canada still only have to take an arrival test if they’re randomly selected.
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) did not initially address questions about why the government is taking so long to shift to testing all non-U.S. foreign arrivals.
Earlier this month, the Canadian Airports Council — which represents many of the country’s airports — told CBC News it’s simply not feasible to test all incoming passengers in the arrival halls of the country’s largest airports.
“We’re all collectively struggling to understand how we can operationalize this in a way that will keep travellers flowing, keep everybody safe and avoid those log jams at airports,” said Daniel-Robert Gooch, president of the Airports Council.