Entering Canada was a breeze via Vancouver International Airport, with a seamless transborder arrival experience from my U.S. flight to my domestic Canadian connection on Air Canada.
Vancouver International Airport Arrival Experience
Prior to my trip, I had filled out my ArriveCAN form, which includes my contact tracing details and a copy of my vaccine card and negative COVID-19 PCR test. Upon submission, I received a QR code that was available in the ArriveCAN app, though I printed out a copy just in case.
Turns out, I was never asked for it.
After stepping off my flight from Los Angeles, I followed the signs toward Canada Connections. Two flights were listed, including AC557 which I had just competed.
My first stop was at an automated kiosk in which I scanned my passport, took my picture, and answered a series of question, none of them related to COVID-19. A receipt with my picture and a number spit out from the machine:
Next, I entered a line to speak to an agent. There was only one agent on duty, but only three people in front of me. I’ve been grilled before when entering Canada, so I wasn’t sure what to expect if the agent could not understand why I would fly all the way to Toronto only to fly right back to Los Angeles…via Monreal.
Finally, it was my turn. The agent was young. He took my entry form and passport, scanned it, then asked me why I was coming to Canada.
I put the blame on Air Canada, telling him that Air Canada forced me to take one roundtrip in order to keep my elite status. I suspect I was not the first such traveler, because he nodded his head and said, “Hmm. Is that really worthwhile?”
I explained it was, particularly for me as an American because Air Canada elite status allows me lounge access on all my United flights. That answer was apparently good enough for him, because he nodded his head, handed me my passport with a long form on COVID-19 precautions, and wished me a pleasant onward journey.
The form, apparently, indicated that I did not need to take a COVID-19 test upon arrival. My next stop was a testing center, but I was directed to continue on.
My arrival experience was smooth and I was thankful for that, especially considering how strict Canada has been compared to the USA during the pandemic in controlling movement. Thankfully, the border agent understood what I was doing and did not question it.
My experience yesterday was somewhat similar – everyone was directed towards the testing lane, but I flagged someone down and told them that I had a previous positive on me, so they let me through!
We got in Vancouver airport 1 AM they made the whole plane take a cold test test when we just took 12 days before coming from Cuba what is the point something has to be done about this c*** that’s going on to the eye for one I have had it
What? Like, what?
Surprised you don’t have NEXUS
Consider yourself lucky. I told a similar (true) story to the CBSA at YVR, and I was sure the agent was going to order a cavity search. Fortunately her colleague found my plan amusing and waved me through…
It’s a very different experience if you are connecting in YVR from another country to return to USA. When my flight arrived in YVR from TYO, I had to go through the Canadian custom even though I was only transiting. After the Canadian custom, I collected my bags and placed them in the connection drop-off belt. No problem so far until I reached the US custom when they did not believe that I had nothing to declare. I was placed in a waiting room while they contacted Air Canada to recall my bags for examination. By the time my bags arrived for examination, I had missed my flight and it was the last flight out that day. I waited for three hours in line at the Air Canada counter to rebook my flight. I arrived in YVR at 6pm and I left the airport after midnight. Never again will I connect in YVR again. If you must transit in YVR, make up things that you have not bought overseas even though you have nothing to declare. Apparently, they expect everyone to have something to declare.
How entitled we in the West that we waste time and resources all for accessing a lounge a couple hours before a flight. Meanwhile over in Ukraine…
Blah, blah, blah.
Truth hurts eh Matt? But enjoy your free food and booze if it makes you feel happier. Tip: Sneak some lounge goodies into your carry-on bag when you overnight so you have something to snack on during those godforsaken hours laying awake in a hotel in a different time zone trying to remember to wake up on time to catch that extra early flight.
What a predictable childish response from someone with their head so far up their own @ss they doesnt realise what entitled little sh!tbags their kids will turn into flying them in premium cabins, another pathetic ‘journalist’ who writes about the world while the rest of us get on with running it.
You’re in their database as having taken a PCR test so they don’t need to ask you. The officer can see that on the screen. I have the Nexus card which made the process quicker. Only 3 people ahead of me on arrival from Amsterdam, The officer glanced at my card (which is earmarked as global entry with no need to produce my passport) and terminal issued receipt. Then said I could go.
Thanks for the in depth article.
Also enjoyed your A220 YUL to LAX story and photos.
Next time you’re in YVR… if you have time to wander downtown… give a shout and let’s do coffee.
*former WardAir trainee*