That's right, my fellow travelers! The Government of Canada released an amazing update on the COVID-19 travel restrictions for any American traveling to Canada. As of October 1, 2022, all travel restrictions that were enforced due to the COVID-19 pandemic have been lifted for any American wishing to enter Canada by land, air, or sea!
This means that you no longer need to provide proof of vaccination, do not need any pre-entry or arrival COVID tests, and do not have to quarantine after entering Canada!
This article is tailored for my fellow Michiganders planning their next voyage to Canada!
One thing I have always loved about Michigan-- more specifically, living in Detroit-- is the feeling that we have a totally different country right next to us! In less than an hour, I can be in a foreign land-- where French is the second most spoken language, citizens have universal health care, and its political leader isn't in his damn 70's!
Now that we can freely travel to our foreign neighbor to the north, I'm going to give you a one-stop-shop guide on everything you need to know for entry to Canada from Michigan!
ArriveCAN is an iPhone and Android app to help expedite entry for people entering Canada. There is also a web version available. This app is no longer required for entry into Canada-- however, it expedites the process to get in!
The app grants users the ability to upload proof they received the COVID-19 vaccination and information from a travel document they'll use to enter the country. The documents the app will allow you to upload are:
- NEXUS Card (PASSID)
- Permanent Resident Card
- Enhanced Driver's License *
- US Permanent Resident Card
- Certificate of Indian Status (CIS)
- Secure Certificate of Indian Status (CSIS)
The app also lets you enter the same information for other people accompanying you, as well. This feature will come in handy for those traveling with small children or elderly ones who are not technologically savvy.
* I would highly recommend any person living in Michigan to get an Enhanced Driver's License! It costs $45 the first time and $38 for renewal. Not only is it cheaper and quicker to get than a passport, you can also use it as identification to enter Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean. Plus, on May 3, 2023, all Americans will need "REAL ID" to fly domestically. The Enhanced Driver's License is "REAL ID" compliant.
Crossing Canadian border by car
How many entrances are there from Michigan to Canada? There are a total of four! Below are descriptions and locations for each of these four entry points:
Detroit-Windsor Tunnel: Well, the name is a giveaway as to which city in Michigan this entry point resides in! The tunnel is 5,160 feet long, which is less than a mile. With light traffic (this is rather optimistic), it takes about 10 minutes to drive through.
The toll costs only $5.00 to enter Windsor and $4.50 to re-enter the US. Very affordable! However, if you enroll with Nexpress, the toll will be even cheaper! For those familiar with E-ZPass, Nexpress is a tag you attach to your windshield.
There used to be a Detroit-Windsor Tunnel Bus, however, it is still currently suspended.
The Detroit-Windsor Tunnel is open 24 hours a day.
Address: 100 E Jefferson, Detroit, MI 48226
Ambassador Bridge: Featured in the stock photograph in the header for this article, the Ambassador Bridge is an alternate entry way for those in Detroit who do not wish to use the tunnel. It stands above the Detroit River and connects the Motor City to Windsor. Of the three bridges you can use to enter Canada from Michigan, the Ambassador is my favorite!
The toll to cross the Ambassador bridge into Canada is $6.00 USD compared to the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel's $5.00. For just an extra Washington, you get a better view! Re-entering the US via the bridge will cost $8.00 CAD. If you'd like a discounted toll of $4.75 both ways, you can apply to be an Ambassador Bridge Premier member.
The Ambassador Bridge is the longest international suspension bridge on Earth! Even if you are not driving on it, it is one of the prettiest things to see when you visit Detroit!
The Ambassador Bridge is 24/7.
Address: 2744 W Fort St, Detroit, MI 48216
Blue Water Bridge: Michiganders who live closer to Port Huron than Detroit can enter Canada via the Blue Water Bridge. The bridge takes you over St. Clair River and ends in Sarnia, Ontario.
Entering Canada, you have the option to pay a discounted toll using cash ($3.75) but you cannot pay the toll in cash re-entering the US. It is advised you set up a ConneXion account. You attach a tag to your windshield to scan when crossing the border.
Address: 1410 Elmwood, Port Huron, MI 48060
Sault Ste. Marie International Bridge: Those residing in the Upper Peninsula will opt to cross the Sault Ste. Marie International Bridge. Both of the cities in Michigan and Ontario that the bridge links bear the name 'Sault Ste. Marie'. The bridge spans the St. Marys River.
The toll to enter Canada and the US costs $4.00. To get on the bridge, drivers will use I-75 N.
Entering Canada by ferry
Michiganders who have gone to Mackinac Island will be familiar with a ferry taking them from one place to another! Turns out-- there are one option for passengers to enter Canada by ferry. There used to be two-- however, the Bluewater Ferry in Marine City has been shut down since 2018. Also, the Detroit-Windsor Truck Ferry only services trucks, as its name suggests. Thus, the only available option to enter Canada by water is the...
Walpole Algonac Ferry: Driving your car into Canada may be faster-- assuming light traffic. Taking a ferry gives you a guaranteed commute time of 15-20 minutes and no stress dealing with traffic! Located in Algonac, this ferry transports passengers across the St. Clair River and drops them off in Walpole Island, Ontario.
You do not need to make a reservation to ride the ferry. Walk-ons are acceptable. The ferry only accepts debit or credit cards to pay the toll; no cash. If you are walking onto the ferry, you will only have to pay $2.50. If you are bringing your car with, it will cost you $12.00.
Whereas the bridges and tunnel are 24/7, the Walpole Algonac ferry is not. The first ferry from Algonac leaves at approximately 7:00 a.m and the last ferry departs at roughly 10:00 p.m. Also, the ferry operates weather permitting.
Address: 202 Fruit St, Algonac, MI 48001
Flying into Canada
Canada has 13 international airports. As of October 1st, wearing a mask in a Canadian airport and on a flight entering Canada is no longer required. However, Americans flying into Canada still do need to be vaccinated.
Obviously, there is no point to cover costs, since flight prices will differ based on variables such as time purchased, destination, and airline.
While the world will never quite be the same after post pandemic, it is refreshing to see the restrictions enforced due to COVID being rolled back. I hope you enjoyed this informative guide on how you can now travel to Canada from Michigan!