Flights to Mexico and the Caribbean will grind to a halt on Sunday, and Canadian residents who travel internationally by air for non-essential reasons will soon face a more restrictive and expensive quarantine program on their return.
In addition, private security officers on government contract have begun monitoring people who are in mandatory 14-day isolation.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the changes in Ottawa on Friday. He said the new rules are meant to deter sunseekers from flying south and to slow the spread of more-transmissible variants of the coronavirus. The first new variant was detected more than four months ago in Britain, and swept through an Ontario long-term care home recently. As of Friday, 50 residents had died.
The rules will bring more pain to an industry devastated by the pandemic, but Mr. Trudeau said WestJet Airlines Ltd., Air Canada, Sunwing Airlines Inc. and Transat AT Inc. all agreed to cancel flights to the popular winter getaways until April 30. The airlines will co-ordinate return flights for travellers who are abroad now, he said.
The cancellations do