Ottawa: The federal government announced plans on Thursday to start randomly testing travellers at Canada’s four main airports for COVID-19 again next week, but intends to move the actual swabbing off-site.
Ottawa paused the random testing of vaccinated travellers entering Canada by air on June 11, while it worked on moving the tests themselves locations outside of airports.
The government now says mandatory tests on randomly selected passengers will resume on July 19 for fully vaccinated travellers arriving at the Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal and Toronto airports.
All tests, for vaccinated, unvaccinated and partially vaccinated travellers, will be completed outside of airports.
The government initially paused the tests while facing a barrage of criticism from tourism and air travel industry groups that felt federal public health measures were responsible for the chaotic state of Canada’s airports.
At the time, The Canadian Travel and Tourism Roundtable all but begged federal ministers to lift the test requirement permanently, claiming the “outdated rules’’ were causing serious delays at customs, missed flights, hours-long lineups and soured Canada’s reputation.