COVID-19 travel rules in popular destinations


As Canadians prepare to plan their summer trips, countries around the world have eased COVID-19 border restrictions and masking rules.

In some countries, including the United States, wearing a mask is no longer mandatory on flights. However, these orders would only apply to domestic flights or flights between countries that do not require the wearing of masks in flight. In accordance with Transport Canada regulations, masks are still mandatory on all commercial flights to and from Canada.

Some countries have also dropped their vaccine requirements for foreign tourists. However, these destinations may still be out of reach for unvaccinated Canadians, as Transport Canada rules also state that all travelers over the age of 12 are obliged to be vaccinated board planes at most Canadian airports.

Here are the vaccination, COVID-19 screening and mask-wearing requirements at some of the most popular vacation destinations for Canadians:


Vaccinations required to enter? Yes

Pre-flight COVID-19 test required? Yes

Mandatory masks inside? No, with exceptions

To fly to the United States, all travelers must bring current proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within one day of travel. The test can be either a rapid antigen test administered by a laboratory or healthcare provider, or a molecular test, such as a PCR test. No COVID-19 test is required to enter the United States through land border crossings or ferry terminals.

Additionally, all non-immigrant travelers and non-US citizens must present proof of full vaccination. All vaccines approved for use in Canada are accepted by US authorities.

There are no longer statewide indoor mask mandates anywhere in the United States. However, some cities, including New York and Chicago, still require masks on public transit while others, including Philadelphia, still have citywide mask mandates for all indoor spaces.


Vaccinations required to enter? Nope

Pre-flight COVID-19 test required? Nope

Mandatory masks inside? Nope

In March, the UK lifted all of its COVID-19 border measures, making it one of the least restricted countries where Canadians can go. There is no need to take COVID-19 tests before departure or after arrival. Even unvaccinated travelers can visit the UK without having to quarantine or face other restrictions.

Masks have also been optional in most indoor spaces since February in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Scotland held on to its mask mandates for a bit longer, but the Scottish government also ended its mandate on April 19.


Vaccinations required to enter? Nope

Pre-flight COVID-19 test required? Nope

Mandatory masks inside? Nope

Mexico also has some of the most lax COVID-19 travel restrictions in the world. The country does not require any COVID-19 testing before or upon arrival and is open to unvaccinated travellers.

As of April 21, all Mexican states are in the green zone depending on the country COVID-19 monitoring system. This means masks are recommended but optional in indoor public spaces. However, masks are still compulsory on public transport.


Vaccinations required to enter? Nope

Pre-flight COVID-19 test required? Nope

Mandatory masks inside? Nope

Jamaica had required travelers to take a COVID-19 test 72 hours before their flight. But on April 16, the country has dropped its border testing requirements as well as its indoor mask mandate. Jamaica has also never required travelers to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Although there are no mandates, the country’s health authorities are still recommending mask-wearing as well as social distancing and regular hand-washing in public spaces.


Vaccinations required to enter? Nope

Pre-flight COVID-19 test required? Nope

Mandatory masks inside? Nope

Travelers from Canada hoping to visit the beaches of Punta Cana will not need to show proof of a vaccine or proof of a COVID-19 test, but travelers can be randomly selected undergo a COVID-19 test upon arrival. However, if you have proof of vaccination or a negative PCR or antigen test carried out 72 hours before your arrival, you may be exempted from the random test.

Travelers from certain countries deemed to be at higher risk of COVID-19, such as Australia, Brazil, India, the United Kingdom and Spain, are required to present either proof of vaccination or a test PCR or antigen negative. This also applies to any traveler who has visited one of these countries within the last 14 days.

Masks are also no longer required in most indoor spaces, with the exception of health care centers and public transport.


Vaccinations required to enter? No, except PCR test

Pre-flight COVID-19 test required? No, unless not vaccinated

Mandatory masks inside? Yes

Cuba allows vaccinated travelers to enter the country without needing a pre-arrival COVID-19 test. However, unvaccinated travelers are required to show proof of a PCR test within 72 hours of entering Cuba.

Cuba also requires unvaccinated travelers to take an antigen test 24 hours before leaving the country. Antigen tests are available at hotels and cost around C$30. Travel health insurance is also compulsory for all visitors, although it can be purchased at the airport on arrival.

Masks remain mandatory for all indoor public spaces. Travelers to Cuba must also complete a online health declaration form prior to entry, similar to the mandatory ArriveCan app for travelers entering Canada.

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