Over 6,000 American tourists have tried to enter Canada since COVID-19 started
The border between Canada and the United States has been closed to non-essential travel for months, but thousands of Americans have still tried to cross it for fun.
Between March 22 and October 18, the Canada Border Services Agency says officers turned away 6,479 US citizens who attempted to cross the border for a bit of sightseeing.
In the same time period, 1,089 Americans tried to cross the border for shopping, and 2,508 tried to cross for recreational purposes, according to data provided by the CBSA. All were denied entry “as a result of their purpose of travel being deemed to be discretionary,” said CBSA spokesperson Mark Stuart. An additional 11,280 US citizens were turned away for other reasons.
In total, 21,356 Americans have been denied entry into Canada since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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The border between Canada and the United States was closed to non-essential travel on March 21, with the order extended several times, most recently until November 21.
The emergency orders under Canada’s Quarantine Act do not allow people to travel to Canada for optional or discretionary reasons, which include tourism, recreation, and entertainment.
“You can get COVID-19 during your travels,” according to the CDC. “You may feel well and not have any symptoms, but you can still spread COVID-19 to others.”
While extended family members of Canadians are allowed to enter the country, all travelers must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.
Speaking to reporters on September 18, Trump claimed he’s working with Canada to “pick a good day” to reopen the land crossing.
“We’re looking at the border with Canada. Canada would like it opened. We want to get back to normal business,” he said.
No Canadian official has said the country is looking to reopen the border.