Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to announce today new measures aimed at further restricting international travel as more infectious variants of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 spread around the globe.
Trudeau has urged Canadians for weeks not to take any non-essential trips outside the country.
And he has warned that the federal government could impose restrictions at any time that would make it harder for them to return.
He is expected to follow up those warnings today with action in time to stop an exodus of winter-weary Canadians from taking advantage of the coming March break to vacation in warmer climes.
Quebec Premier Francois Legault has been urging Ottawa to require anyone returning from abroad to quarantine for two weeks in a hotel, at their own expense.
Trudeau, who has conspicuously left the door open to that option, is expected to adopt it today.
He is also expected to announce other measures to further discourage travel abroad.
Non-essential travel into Canada by most foreign nationals has been banned since the pandemic first began sweeping across the country last March. Anyone entering the country has been required to self-quarantine for two weeks.
The federal government began beefing up those measures earlier this month.
As of Jan. 7, the government has required proof of a negative COVID-19 test, taken within 72 hours of departure time, before anyone is allowed to board a flight to Canada.
Legault and Ontario Premier Doug Ford have urged Ottawa to impose mandatory testing upon arrival in Canada as well. And they’ve proposed a ban on flights from countries where the new, more contagious variants of the virus are circulating.