There are four factors that are affecting travel withing or across Canada in March 2021, one year after the State of Emergency was first declared:
1. Immunizations are beginning in all parts of Canada. Those getting highest priorities are
- First responders, healthcare workers, and those in seniors residences
- Members of First Nations, those living in remote northern communities (with few hospital facilities), and other high-risk groups
- Those over age 65… and this limit is moving down quickly as more vaccines become available
2. New Variants are rapidly spreading in all populations
These are proving to be more infectious and higher risk of severe consequences (and hospitalization). Because of this, many communities are still in a high state of emergency with limited openings and masking/distancing/hand-washing still required in public
The governments are choosing to give as many people their first dose (with 60-75% effectiveness) rather than giving second doses to those receiving early vaccinations — other than group a0 and b0 above — in order to slow the potential spread and impact of the new variants
3. Quebec has a night travel curfew
Montréal in the red zone: curfew pushed back to 9:30 p.m. as of March 17
On March 16, the Québec government announced that the nightly curfew will be pushed back from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. as of Wednesday, March 17.
4. The Atlantic Bubble was cancelled two months ago , and is now re-establishing itself
On March 18th, the Premiers announce Atlantic Bubble scheduled to reopen by April 19. In a statement on Thursday, the return of the so-called Atlantic Bubble was jointly announced by the premiers of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador, which is scheduled to be restored by April 19.
The reopening of the Atlantic Bubble will allow residents of the Atlantic provinces to travel within the region without the requirement to self-isolate for 14 days.
That being said, more facilities and activities are opening up — but cautiously, given the new variants and their potential spread. Check with each province — and each municipality — for what is re-opening and with what capacity restrictions.