What you need to know about flying from Edmonton International Airport over the holidays

Dec 9 2021, 9:00 pm

It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also a very confusing time to fly.

Either you haven’t flown since March 2020 or you have and all the rules have changed again. Regardless, travelling by air isn’t as easy as it once was.

If you’re flying out of the Edmonton International Airport this holiday season, or considering it, here’s a handy guide of what you should know before you fly.

For starters, all passengers 12 years old and up need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to board a plane departing from Canada to any Canadian or international destination.

Besides that, and needing to wear a mask indoors for the entire time (except while eating and drinking), here is a quick guide to flying from YEG this holiday season.

Flying from YEG to the United States

According to the CDC, all air passengers two years of age or older boarding a flight from Edmonton to the United States need proof of a negative COVID-19 test or documentation of recovery from the virus.

  • You will need to get a COVID-19 viral test (regardless of vaccination status or citizenship) no more than one day before you travel by air into the United States
  • You must show your negative result to the airline before you board your flight
  • If you recently recovered from COVID-19, you may instead travel with documentation of recovery from COVID-19 (i.e., your positive COVID-19 viral test result on a sample taken no more than 90 days before the flight’s departure from a foreign country and a letter from a licensed healthcare provider or a public health official stating that you were cleared to travel)
  • For flights to the US, YEG recommends to arrive early at the airport to ensure you have plenty of time to get your tests before checking in for your flight

Flying from YEG internationally

Each international destination has its own set of entry requirements. Passengers are required to understand and prepare for the entry requirements of their destination before leaving the Edmonton Airport.

COVID-19 airport tests

Numi Health offers passengers departing from YEG different types of COVID-19 tests on site.

There are two kinds of tests available:

  • A PCR test with the sample taken at EIA, sent to a medical laboratory with results emailed within 24-48 hours. This can also be referred to as a molecular test and is the most common test required for travel screening. 
    • A list of accepted tests for re-entry into Canada is available online here.
  • Rapid screening conducted by an antigen test with results provided within 30 minutes.

The hours of operation are 7 am – 7 pm daily; however, on Christmas Day it is open from 7 am to 5 pm.

Security checkpoints

All passengers must wear a face covering over their mouth and nose before entering the screening checkpoint. 

The detectors at the checkpoints are sensitive to metals. Clothing with metal appliqués, belts, and jewellery will sound the alarm and result in a physical search by an agent.

Travellers are strongly recommended to check the complete list of items that are and are not permitted by CATSA. 

The measures for liquids are unchanged (only containers smaller than 100 ml are allowed and must be placed in a 1 litre plastic bag).

Liquid disinfectants are accepted in carry-on baggage. A passenger may carry a 355 ml bottle of hand sanitizer in their carry-on baggage. The bottle does not need to be placed in the 1 litre re-sealable bag with other liquids, aerosols, and gels. 

With files from Tyler Jadah

Laine MitchellLaine Mitchell

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