The Federal Government of Canada will end the previously required Covid-19 pre-arrival test, effective April 1 for fully vaccinated visitors. A negative Covid-19 test is still required for unvaccinated visitors, who are allowed to enter Canada. Random testing of air and land arrivals will continue in order to track any emergence of new Covid-19 variants. Travelers entering Canada are still required to use the ArriveCan app. All vaccinated visitors arriving into the United States by air are required to provide a negative antigen test. Prior to April 1, visitors arriving in Canada must continue to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test.

Using a telehealth service is a convenient answer for boaters planning to enter Canada prior to April 1. One such service/product is Abbott BinaxNOW with eMed Telehealth Service. This lab-antigen test is accepted by airlines, cruise-lines, and ships originating from the U.S. going to countries that accept an antigen test for entry. The test results, available in about 15 minutes, meet conditions of proof of negative Covid-19 test by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

Here’s how it works. Order the test kit online at a cost of approximately $70. Your order is shipped via expedited service to a U.S. address only. When ordering the BinaxNOW kit, be sure it is the Abbott version.

Once you receive the kit, go online to eMed.com/app/start-testing to begin your virtual visit. An eMed Certified Guide will join you by video and walk you through the testing process. Test results are quickly available to you through the NAVICA app – a secure digital certificate is provided in the app. You can then store, display, and share the test certificate with your smartphone. The App is available free through Apple Store and available from Google Play. If you test positive, you should self-isolate, inform your healthcare provider, and follow the guidance provided by the CDC.

For Canadians: On the Canadian side of the border, the product name Switch Health, a rapid antigen test, meets requirements authorized by Health Canada as a telehealth service. Test results are within 15 minutes and sent to your phone in about 45 minutes. You can order the kit online with free shipping in 5-7 business days, or expedited shipping for a fee in 1-3 business days; be sure you purchase the correct rapid antigen test kit.  Switch Health is a Government Canada approved testing provider for on-site testing at various Canadian airports as well as supervised remote testing. Instructions are available online. Having a PCR test (negative molecular test result) within 72 hours to enter Canada is still an option.

San Juan Islands: Previously, there was not a location in the San Juan Islands to receive a PCR Covid-19 Test. Friday Harbor Drug on San Juan Island now accepts appointments online at fridayharbordrug.com, or by phone 360-378-4421 ext. 5 for PCR testing; the cost is approximately $200 per test. At Friday Harbor Drug, you can purchase the Abbott BinaxNow testing kit for the eMed Telehealth Antigen Test; cost is approximately $50. Both of these tests are accepted by Canadian Customs. As a reminder, the PCR test needs to be taken within 72 hours of arrival in Canada, and the Telehealth Antigen Test taken within 24 hours of arrival into Canada for unvaccinated visitors.