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'It's time': Vancouver travellers welcome expected changes to rules at borders, airports

The Canadian government plans to drop the COVID-19 vaccination requirement at the border, CTV News has learned, and some travellers passing through Vancouver International Airport say the move is long overdue.

The change will also stop random testing and make completing an ArriveCan form optional.

“Yeah, I think it’s time. People are kind of adjusted going back to normal,” a traveller flying out of YVR Tuesday told CTV News Vancouver.

“You know, you need to eventually return to normal,” said another traveller.

Those in the province’s tourism industry say the changes could mark a significant step in its long road to recovery.

“If in fact it’s the case, it’s welcome news,” said Walt Judas, CEO of the Tourism Association of BC. “It is something we’ve been calling for, for several months.”

Judas says the ArriveCan app became a major hurdle for the industry.

“ArriveCan was one of the barriers for international visitation,” he said.

One traveller said she intends to travel more often once the ArriveCan app is no longer mandatory.

“I’m kind of thrilled because I want to do quick little day trips through the U.S. and the ArriveCan is just, I don’t want to bother,” she told CTV News Vancouver.

Federal officials remained tight lipped on specifics Tuesday, but hinted at the positive results of lifting restrictions.

“I’m interested in making sure that the border is as unsticky as possible,” said Tourism Minister Randy Boissonnault. “I want to see the free flow of goods so we can boost the tourism sector, get them back to work and doing what they need to do. That said, I’ve said since I became tourism minister, safety first.”

The federal government rolled back restrictions in June, allowing unvaccinated Canadians to board planes and trains for domestic and international travel.

It’s unclear what exactly the latest changes will be, but it’s expected an announcement will be made in the days ahead. Top Stories

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