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Canada Is Officially Advising Against Non-Essential Travel Outside The Country Right Now

"If you do not have to travel internationally, please do not."

Senior Editor
Canada Is Officially Advising Against Non-Essential Travel Outside The Country Right Now

The government is advising Canadians to avoid non-essential international travel in light of the threat posed by the Omicron COVID-19 virus variant.

"We are asking Canadians to be cautious heading into the holiday season," federal Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs Dominic LeBlanc said at a Wednesday press conference.

"If you do not have to travel internationally, please do not."

Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos suggested that people who intend on travelling in the near future should change their plans, adding that officials "feared the worst" as Omicron continues to spread globally.

A call to avoid international travel now appears on the federal government website. Duclos said the advisory would last for four weeks, after which officials will "reevaluate the situation."

The minister called for solidarity from Canadians, even if they're "fed up" with the pandemic and related health measures.

The federal government has already instituted on-arrival testing for all air travellers arriving from countries other than the United States. Fully-vaccinated air travellers have to quarantine until they receive a negative test result.

The new travel advisory comes as Quebec considers revisiting its relaxing holiday gathering rules. Though the provincial government had planned to increase private gathering capacity for fully-vaccinated residents to 20 people, Premier François Legault told reports Wednesday that he "wouldn't exclude" changes.

On Tuesday, Quebec Health Minister Christian Dubé asked Quebecers to once again work from home if possible to limit contracts and prevent the propagation of Omicron.

Quebec also expects to roll out free rapid COVID-19 tests at pharmacies as of Monday, December 20.

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