Travel Restrictions Update – How to Travel to Canada from India & Pakistan

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On April 22, 2021, the government of Canada suspended flights from India and Pakistan as a precaution to minimize the spread of COVID-19. 

Transport Canada detailed the flight suspension in a news release on

The Public Health Agency of Canada has been monitoring case data, and through mandatory testing upon entry into Canada, has detected a disproportionally higher number of cases among individuals travelling on flights originating from India and Pakistan. Given the high number of cases, the Government of Canada has taken additional measures:

  • Transport Canada has issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) to suspend all commercial and private passenger flights from India and Pakistan for 30 days, effective 23:30 EDT April 22, 2021.
  • The Minister of Transport will amend the Interim Order Respecting Certain Requirements for Civil Aviation Due to COVID-19, which means for passengers who depart India or Pakistan to Canada after 23:30 EDT April 22, 2021, via an indirect route, they will need to obtain a negative COVID-19 pre-departure test from a third country before continuing their journey to Canada.
  • These measures will help manage the elevated risk of imported cases of COVID-19 and variants of concern into Canada during a time of increasing pressure on our health care system.”

Travel suspensions from India and Pakistan will be lifted this Saturday, May 22, unless otherwise stated by the Canadian government.

This does not mean, however, that Indian and Pakistani travelers will be admitted into Canada. The Canadian government still restricts travel from foreign countries for all individuals except the following:

  • Canadian citizens
  • Dual citizens with a valid Canadian passport or special authorization
  • Permanent residents of Canada
  • People registered under the Indian Act (in reference to indigenous peoples and not Indian nationals)
  • Other protected persons

Despite these rules, international travel laws are tricky, and some Indian and Pakistani nationals can enter Canada provided they fit additional requirements, dictated by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. 

Those seeking to travel to Canada from India or Pakistan must:

All foreign nationals who enter Canada, for any reason, must also commit to a 14-day quarantine period. 

The quarantine period is explained in the Flying to Canada Requirements Checklist, as well as additional information pertaining to air travel during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Even with these restrictions, you may have a legitimate reason or need to immigrate or travel to Canada from India or Pakistan. 

If this is the case, you may need the help of an experienced Canadian immigration lawyer. The lawyers at Dhanu Dhaliwal Law Group can help you traverse these new regulations. Call our offices today or fill out our contact form to get started with an initial case evaluation.

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