Here's what you need to know if you get COVID-19 while travelling

Nov 9 2021, 9:13 pm

Travellers could find themselves in some trouble if they test positive for COVID-19 while abroad.

Many Canadians are eager to travel again as borders reopen and countries accept travellers from around the world. Travellers should be aware of what could happen if they test positive for COVID-19 while abroad. It could come with a hefty price tag.

Those entering Canada by plane must present a negative COVID-19 test. But what happens if your test comes back positive? Well, it may mean an unplanned trip extension.

“Travellers would most likely be forced to quarantine if they contract COVID-19 while out of the country,” Will McAleer, executive director at the Travel Health Insurance Association of Canada, told Daily Hive in an email.

A spokesperson with Global Affairs confirmed to Daily Hive that travellers hoping to enter the country by air would not be allowed to board their flight if they have symptoms of COVID-19 or have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 14 days.

COVID-19 travelling

Travel to Canada/Government of Canada

This is why, McAleer said, it’s important for Canadians who plan to travel to purchase travel insurance. It can help cover unexpected medical and emergency costs that may arise while abroad.

“This will provide services to ensure proper care while out of the country, but also pay for expensive bills, especially for care in the United States, where emergency care can cost upwards of $10,000 per day or higher in the case of an ICU admission,” McAleer said.

Some insurance policies will even provide travellers with a small daily amount in the event they have to extend their trip due to having to quarantine.

“All travellers seeking entry to Canada are subject to strict screening measures by border officers to ensure travellers understand their public health obligations and to verify travellers’ quarantine plan (if required),” a spokesperson with the Public Health Agency of Canada told Daily Hive in an email.

Travellers who return to Canada with COVID-19 symptoms must isolate for 10 days. Officials will check up on those who have been told to isolate as a result of their symptoms. Travellers who are told to isolate upon their arrival will have 48 hours to report that they have arrived at their isolation destination.

If travellers are unsure whether or not they can return to Canada, they can use the federal government’s travel tool by clicking here.

Brooke TaylorBrooke Taylor

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