Canada’s COVID-19 vaccine passport unveiled for international, domestic travel

Canada’s new proof of vaccination program for domestic and international travel has been unveiled and it is very similar to what some provinces are already using.

The new pan-Canadian vaccine passport will be issued through the provinces and territories, as they have access to the immunization records.

The federal government says it has been working closely with the provinces and territories for some time on how to ensure the system is as easy to access as possible.

The card will show the traveller’s name, date of birth, as well as which vaccines they received and when. It will use a QR code which air operators or border agents can scan.

In the upper corner, it will also have a Canada logo, adding another visual layer for border agents to see the official watermark.

RELATED: COVID-19 vaccine required for most travellers within Canada

Officials say this will ensure it is a trusted and easily recognized document. Any evidence of tampering invalidates the document.

Travellers can use an electronic or a paper version, and those without access to a printer can apply to the Canadian government for copy of their card to be mailed to them.

It will be rolled out by the end of November, but some provinces are ready already. They include Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan. But those in Alberta, B.C., and Manitoba will have to wait a bit longer, according to officials.

COVID-19 proof of vaccination

In every province and territory, page 1 will look like the Yukon sample shown. Some provinces or territories may add a second page. They will decide what information appears on that second page.

Starting Oct. 30, travellers departing from Canadian airports and travelling on Canadian trains will need to prove they are fully vaccinated. Those under 12 who are not eligible for the vaccine will be exempt, but for adults, there will be very few exceptions made. A mandate for employees of federally regulated air, rail, and marine transportation sectors comes into effect the same day.

In the interim period, officials say the provincial proof of immunization card will be accepted.

Starting Nov. 8, Canadians can once again travel to the U.S., with proof of full vaccination. Canadians with mix-and-match doses and AstraZeneca will also be allowed entry, U.S. officials say.

However, even with the new proof of immunization, officials say it’s important for travellers to understand it does not guarantee them entry into another country. Travellers should do their research and ensure they meet their destination’s requirements before boarding a plane or crossing a border.

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