Flights to and from India will be suspended for another month by the Canadian government.

According to a Transport Canada press release, the ban on direct flights between Canada and India will remain in place until September 21, 2021, as part of an ongoing public health measure. All commercial and private passenger flights have been cancelled. Only cargo, medical transfers, and military planes are permitted to fly between the two countries directly.

Travelers from India will have to take an indirect route to Canada because of the restrictions. Travelers from India will need a pre-arrival test from a third country within 72 hours of their final departure to Canada, regardless of immigration status. This could be any country other than India, which may have its own coronavirus-related rules.

Omar Alghabra, Minister of Transport of Canada, tweeted: “Protecting the health and safety of Canadians continues to be our top priority. After reviewing public health data, we have decided to extend the direct flight ban between Canada and India until September 21st, 2021.”

In April, Canada imposed a restriction on direct flights to and from India. It was owing to a high percentage of Indian travellers testing positive for COVID-19 at the time. The government also imposed a ban on flights from Pakistan, which was later lifted in June.

The ban may pose a problem for overseas students from India, as several colleges in Canada are planning to start in-person classes this fall. Although overseas students attending COVID-19-ready universities are exempt from travel restrictions, the prohibition may require additional trip planning and expenditure on the part of students and their parents. Indian students make up a sizable portion of Canada’s international student population. In recent years, India has accounted for roughly 30% of overseas students in Canada.

Beginning September 7, fully vaccinated travellers from India and the rest of the world will be permitted entry into Canada. Those who have been completely vaccinated with Astra Zeneca/COVISHIELD or any other Canada-approved vaccine will be subject to the new restrictions.

Exempt travellers who have received the vaccine will be allowed to enter, but will be required to self-isolate at home. They will be required to provide COVID-19 tests on arrival and on day eight of their quarantine.

Vaccinated travellers will still be subject to the India flight ban regulations, but they will likely be exempt from quarantine and post-arrival testing. All fully vaccinated tourists must have a pre-arrival COVID-19 test and a quarantine plan before entering Canada, regardless of their country of origin.

– India’s new age travel digital media


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