It actually happened! Yesterday was a sort of red-letter day between the United States and Canada. What happened you say? Canada began easing some of its border restrictions with the COVID-19 pandemic, finally!

Fox17 reported that beginning yesterday,  Monday, July 5, fully vaccinated Canadians or permanent legal residents may return to Canada without quarantining. But among the requirements are a negative test for the virus before returning, and another once they get back. Boy, are they are tough!

In the early days of the pandemic, the U.S. and Canadian governments closed the more than 5,500-mile (8,800-kilometer) border to nonessential traffic.  But now with increasing vaccination rates and dropping infection rates, many of us are having a difficult time figuring out why Canada hasn't opened up more. And, sadly, the Canadian and U.S. governments aren't expected to reevaluate the border closure until July 21.

Commercial traffic has gone back and forth normally between the two countries since the start of the pandemic. Canadians are able to fly into the United States with a negative COVID-19 test and Americans can visit Canada to see relatives or close friends as outlined by a strict set of guidelines. But to do that, people entering Canada must quarantine for two weeks on arrival and the quarantine is enforced by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Geeze, is Sargent Preston there, too? You have to know an old TV show to get that one.

The U.S. Travel Association estimates that each month the border is closed costs $1.5 billion. Canadian officials say Canada had about 22 million foreign visitors in 2019 — about 15 million of them from the United States.

Yikes! Let's get the restrictions lifted soon!

 

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