Canada Eases Travel Restrictions for Family and Students

The federal government of Canada is easing travel restrictions on extended family members and international students. It means that more family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents can travel to Canada for compassionate and family reunification reasons. The country is opening its borders starting from October 8, 2020. Besides, the government is also working to create a process to allow more foreign nationals to enter Canada on compassionate grounds in limited circumstances and with limited rules for quarantine. The announcement was made by Canada’s immigration Marco Mendicino in a press conference

Extended family members who will be able to travel to next from next week include the following:

  • individuals in an exclusive dating relationship with a Canadian citizen or permanent resident for at least one year who have spent time in the physical presence of the Canadian citizen or permanent resident during the relationship and these individuals’ dependent children
  • non-dependent children (adult children who do not meet the definition of a dependent child in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations)
  • grandchildren
  • siblings (including half- and step-siblings)
  • grandparents


In addition to this, with effect from October 20, international students enrolled at designated Canadian colleges or universities are allowed to travel to Canada, provided their DLI has a COVID-19 readiness plan. Again, these international students must also quarantine themselves for 14 days.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has advised travelers to avoid unnecessary travels until they have met all essential required and obtained the required permissions to come to Canada as per the new exemptions.

Marco Mendicino has also stated that anyone entering Canada must submit a detailed plan for their quarantine to Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officers. These officers reserve the right to refuse entry in case an adequate plan is not provided.

“The travel restrictions we’ve put in place to protect the health and safety of Canadians remain in effect, and we must continue to be disciplined and vigilant in our response to the COVID 19 pandemic,” Mendicino said.

Last week, Canada’s government announced to speed up the processing of spousal visa applications, increasing it to 6000 applications per month.

Canada’s international travel restrictions and border closures with the US have been in place since March 18 due to Coronavirus’s outbreak.

Travel restrictions in Canada expire on October 31, whereas the agreement to close the US-Canada borders will expire on October 21.

Canada Continues to Process Immigration Applications

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Canada continues to process immigration applications and hold Express Entry, as well as Provincial Nominee, draws regularly.

The month of September witnessed the highest number of Express Entry draws, wherein the government issued a total of 12,000 invitations. British Columbia and Quebec also conducted their immigration draws.

Last week, the government of Canada also announced its plans to continue the pace of immigration in the country by allowing more skilled foreign workers to immigrate and boost the economic growth of Canada.

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