It has been a long two years for Upstate New Yorkers who have friends, family, and property in Canada as many have not been able to cross the border due to COVID travel restrictions imposed by the Canadian government.

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With Upstate New York's close proximity to Canada, many have been frustrated with not being able to check on their loved ones or their property.  My family is one that has property in Canada and the last time that we set foot in the country was at the tale end of February 2020. Two weeks after our trip, the border closed. Once the border opened back up, it came with a slew of travel restrictions and requirements thanks to the pandemic.

Now, my family along with the thousands of other New York families who own property and loved ones in Canada will finally be able to cross the border without vaccinations, COVID tests, isolation periods, and more as Canada is lifting its travel restrictions.

Beginning this Saturday, October 1, visitors traveling by air, rail, or cruise ship will no longer need to show proof of vaccination or undergo testing. Additionally, travelers will not be required to submit health information via Canada's ArriveCan app.

There's more - travelers will also not be required to wear masks on trains or planes. Cruise passengers will no longer need to provide proof that they have been vaccinated or produce a negative COVID-19 test before being allowed to board.

The lifting of travel restrictions by Canada comes on the heels of other countries also lifting their restrictions including Japan which will begin to allow independent travelers on Tuesday, October 11. In June of this year, the United States dropped its pre-arrival testing rules. However, the U.S. does still require international travel to produce proof of being fully vaccinated.

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