What you need to know about flying from Montreal Trudeau Airport over the holidays

Dec 9 2021, 6:02 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 Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau 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 YUL this holiday season.

Flying from YUL to the United States

According to the CDC, all air passengers two years of age or older boarding a flight from Montreal 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, YUL recommends three hours before your flight’s estimated departure

Flying from YUL 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 Montreal Airport.

COVID-19 airport tests

Biron Groupe Santé offers passengers departing from YUL different types of COVID-19 tests on site.

The RAPID PCR test ($299)

  • Could be performed on the day of departure, results are available in one hour
  • Molecular test that identifies individuals potentially infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus at the time of testing. This polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19 looks for viral RNA in a nasal secretions sample)

The Antigenic test ($149)

  • Could be performed on the day of departure, results are available in 25 minutes
  • This fast-acting test detects (in nasal secretions) the presence of proteins (or antigens) associated with the virus that causes COVID-19

The clinic is open every day between 5:30 am and 7 pm. Rapid PCR tests are only performed between 8 am and 5 pm.

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