Warning about flying back to Canada now (May 2021)

Did the government hotel have WIFI?

Sounds about right for Canada.out of curiosity if you own a house, are you allowed to quarantine in your own house? Lets say you transfer to an airport near where you live and arrange your own.car to dridrive directly there.

BUT: if the flight goes through Vancouver and then Calgary then this does not work as in Vancouver they will fine you, right?

You have to do the three-day hotel quarantine in the first city you arrive in, so if you are going to Calgary, but transitting through Vancouver, you do the three-day quarantine in Vancouver. Once the three days are up, you can fly to Calgary and go where you intend to finish the quarantine. After the three-day hotel quarantine, you can quarantine at home as long as the government official at the border approves your quarantine plan.
The quarantine hotels have free wi-fi.
If you are sent to the free government quarantine, you might end up staying longer than three days. You have to get your test results back, and then you have to talk to a quarantine officer. There was a 48 hour to 72 hour wait to talk to an officer when I was there, so I ended up at the free facility for five days. If you go to the quarantine hotel that you pay for, you can leave as soon as you get your test results, if negative.
The free government quarantine facility only keeps people for 14 days if they do not have a suitable place to quarantine. Otherwise it is three to five days, then you can go home.

You have to stay at a hotel when you arrive in Canada, either a quarantine hotel that you pay for, or a free quarantine facility that the government pays for. This is true even if you live near the airport. Some people were complaining because they could see their house from the plane on approach to Toronto, but were not allowed to go there.
Once the hotel quarantine is over (one to three days for the paid one, three to five for the free one) you can go home and finish the 14-day quarantine there.
A few people are exempt from the quarantine requirement. Essential workers, people coming to Canada to help someone who is dying, air crew, and so on.

Actually, the number of cases in the US (both active and daily new cases) has been steadily falling since its all-time peak in January. It’s still a huge number, though: currently 1.77% of the US population is infected.

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Thanks! So you claimed you did not have the money, got a mild hassle/mild guilt trip and then after the quarantine you went home because your home qualified as a place to complete the rest of your quarantine, correct?
I’m guessing you live in Calgary.
I will need to do the entire 14 days at a hotel.
It seems to good to be true to get a free 14 day hotel stay but I mean really, it seems all they can do is take your word for it.

This is going to be the crux for me: my parents are well over 65. If I’m able to get the 2nd dose of AstraZeneca here by early July - a pretty big if - I may fly to Vancouver; do the three-day hotel stay there; fly to the prairies and stay in the basement of my brother’s giant house for the rest of the necessary quarantine; and then fly back to Vancouver to stay with my parents.

“Staying in the basement” sounds too negative. That basement is bigger than most Taiwanese apartments.

But with all the people getting vaccinated, I’d hope Canada’s quarantine regulations will be more flexible soon. A two-week quarantine before one vaccinated person can see two other vaccinated people seems unnecessary.

Things I have not yet looked into: the feasibility of flying to Canada and promptly getting the second AZ dose there. But with that, I would have a two-week hotel quarantine, because I’ll do my best to stay away from people until that second dose is “activated”, or whatever the term is.

And all of this leaves aside whatever difficulties will be involved with getting tests before flying, and regulations about coming back to Taiwan. Plus if things do get (remain?) bad here, it’d be pretty shitty of me to abandon my wife for a month or two. “Enjoy the crisis! Don’t forget to feed the cats! And I hope you learn how to cook! See ya!”

Plus it’s not hard to envision scenarios where I’ve got myself stuck on the other side of the Pacific and am not only doing distance teaching, but am doing so on just an iPad and from a very different time zone.

Oh, hey, if we ARE still doing distance learning, that makes the Taiwanese quarantine requirements less of an issue! I can’t see people because of quarantine? Who cares, no one can see people anyway! I can return to my usual mode of returning home less than a hundred hours before classes resume.

Yes, I said I couldn’t afford it, and was able to finish my 14-day quarantine at home. I flew in to Toronto, did the free quarantine there, then flew to Saskatoon, where I live. Whether or not you get fined really seems to depend on which border official deals with you. Note that you have to fill out the ArriveCAN app before your flight. It asks for details of your hotel reservation, but if you don’t have one, you can still complete the form. Some airlines are insisting people have the hotel reservation before they can board, but the Canadian government does say they are not supposed to refuse boarding to Canadian citizens for that.

Can I ask your age?
The reason I ask is because in these types of circumstances younger people are sometimes given more lenience as it is sometimes (correctly) presumed that they probably don’t have as much money as someone who is say middle aged.

Also: how do you know some airlines are refusing to allow those without a reservation to board?

So you planned ahead of time to present yourself in Toronto as someone who could not pay?
You must have bought your ticket to Saskatoon while in Toronto? (How would you know how long it would be to get the result and be released).

You must have been nervous, knowing there was a chance the airline would not allow you to board.

Yes, I was really anxious about the trip. There were so many unknowns before I got on the plane. However, it worked out. I am not young - late middle age, I guess. I had resigned myself to paying for the hotel quarantine, even though I am unemployed because of covid and have no money, but fortunately I was sent to the free facility. There were two others at the desk in the airport where they discuss your hotel stay (that I could hear): one was sent to the free facility even though he did not say he couldn’t afford to pay, but because he did not have an acceptable quarantine plan (his wife was a nurse and they wouldn’tlet him quarantinewith her). The other was a woman with two or three small children. She told them she couldn’t afford the hotel, but they eventually wore her down and convinced her to go to one.
I follow a group on Facebook where the hotel quarantine is discussed, and several people on there have reported they weren’t allowed to board without a hotel reservation. It seems to depend on the airline, and the agent. Others have reported they were allowed to board without a reservation, or were allowed to after arguing about it. I was able to board without one.
It is very easy to rebook your flight now. The airlines know you have to do the hotel quarantine, so will book your flight to reflect that. Then, you can change your domestic flight once you know when you will get out of the hotel. There was no change fee.

That is to say, I had a ticket from Lagos - London - Toronto - Regina - Saskatoon, purchased before the hotel quarantine was required. The airline (Air Canada) emailed me with a change, showing a three-day layover in Toronto. Then, when I knew I would be in Toronto for 5 days, I phoned the airline and changed my flights.

Wow free quarantine sounds more like like it if it is mandated upon arrival how does it work with a canadian citizen with a taiwanese spouse?

can one fly into vancouver, transfer to the city they have a house (not leaving the airport)? Or still must leave the airport, enter vancouver and quarantine, then back to airport and fly to city where they live and quarantine at home?

You have to leave the airport in Vancouver and go to the quarantine hotel. One you get your test results, if negative, you can fly to your destination and finish the 14-day quarantine there. If your spouse is allowed to travel to Canada, they will have to go to the three-day hotel quarantine with you.


Great thanks. Is the spouse allowed to stay with you? I know some people that travelled back here and were forced to pay 2 hotel fees back in 2020. Seemed a bit much for a married couple.

What were the quarantine rules for the 11 days after?

I think you finished your 11 days at home.

So basically you were only allowed to leave the house for essential reasons (like buying food) during this time?

Your spouse is allowed to stay with you in the same hotel room.

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After the hotel stay, you finish the 14-day quarantine at home or in some other suitable place. It is 14 days total, so if the hotel stay was three days, it will be 11 more days. Many people are getting out of the hotel quarantine after only one or two days, though.
Anyway, the rules are you can’t leave your quarantine place at all, except for necessary medical treatment. You have to order food and groceries to be delivered. People can drop things off, but they can’t come in and it has to be contactless delivery. The officials at the airport asked me how I would get food and medicine when they were discussing my quarantine plan.