Americans Are Taking COVID-19 to Canada, and the Canadians Aren’t Happy!

Americans travel to Canada for work, for pleasure, and as a way to get to Alaska.  But these days, Americans aren’t welcome. Canada shut its border with the U.S. months ago, fearing that Americans would bring the dreaded COVID-19 virus with them.  But a closed border doesn’t mean that people don’t travel between the countries, it just means fewer people.  Unfortunately, some that that cross still bring the virus, and refuse to self-quarantine or follow other rules.

Prince Edward Island announced a cluster of new cases linked to a foreign student who entered Canada from the United States.  The man didn’t self-isolate as required, infected at least one person, and then that person infected four more.

The problem is that Canadian authorities must deal with both unwanted tourists slipping though the border and legitimate travelers who break the strict quarantine laws.  As Canada reopens a bit more, there is more approved travel, which compounds the potential for infection.

More than 187,000 truck drivers and individuals entered last week from the U.S., a 30% increase over the end of May.

The law demands that everyone but essential workers and truckers self-isolate for 14 days, but who has the time, or can stand the boredom?

A Florida couple were fined in rural Ontario this week for breaking the quarantine law, while a Minnesota couple were fined last week, also in Ontario. Police have also fined numerous U.S. citizens for stopping to hike in picturesque Banff National Park while en route to Alaska.

Canadians overwhelmingly support the border restrictions, with 81% saying they want the border to stay closed.

Chances are that most of those wanting to keep the borders shut don’t work in tourist towns like Banff, where unemployment sits at a whopping 80%.  In Whistler, hotel occupancy has dropped to near zero.

It’s likely that Americans will travel to Canada when the restrictions end, but for the moment, we’re just not getting any love from our Northern neighbors.

 

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  1. Edith Wenzel
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    You are correct about the type of person who doesn’t want American’s in Canada and want the border closed. These are people who typical go NOWHERE and who certainly don’t travel outside the Country. On the other hand are thousands of Canadians who only
    vacation in the USA and thousands more who fit the ‘Snow Bird’ category. Many own property in the USA that they have been prevented from visiting much less able to check their property. Many own full sized homes and yards and summer/winter cottages. Home owners typically hire someone to look after pools & lawns, but vehicle registrations can not be done from afar. People owning cottages have no caretakers. Thousands USA citizens pass through Canada on their way to Alaska. I have spoken to many. They got a special pass to travel through say AB during this border closing on their way to Alaska. It is a long road from US border to Alaska. People need to stop at a restaurant & washroom break. Sounds reasonable to me, but the complainers are chronic exaggerators. Not only do they go now where they have no concept of the importance of tourism to Canada. I say ‘boo & hiss’ to them. We have COVID here all on our own; we have no call to blame Americans. One complainer was from the Maritime. Not only do they rarely travel they even have their Provincial borders closed to other Canadians. So, they not only have no respect for this situation they don’t want anywhere else in Canada to benefit or to welcome tourists – even if they are just a ‘pass through’ during this time. There is no excuse for stupidity. So, I say pay ‘no attention’.

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