COVID-19 testing

Updated January 22, 2021

As COVID-19 continues to spread and evolve, countries around the world are responding in their own way with different requirements for travellers.

A negative COVID-19 test is required for travel into:

 

Proof of recovery may be accepted. Forms or quarantine may also be required. Be sure to check all entry requirements for each flight in your trip.

A pre-departure test is not required for domestic travel within Canada. Check province entry requirements.

Transport Canada requires that all guests entering Canada from international destinations, 5 years of age and over, present before boarding:

  1. a negative COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) or reverse transcription loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) test result

    OR

  2. a positive COVID PCR test, taken between 14 and 90 days before scheduled departure.

The test will supplement, not replace, the requirements for health questionnaires, temperature checks and face masks.

To comply with this regulation, guests will be required to present a negative PCR or RT-LAMP test at check-in and Canada Customs, taken within 72 hours from their scheduled departure time. Please allow extra time to check in.

It is each guest’s responsibility to source and pay for their own valid PCR or RT-LAMP test.

Valid test results must include:

  • Guest name and date of birth
  • Address and name of the lab that administered the test
  • Date and time the sample was taken
  • The method of the test conducted (PCR or RT-LAMP)
  • The test result

NOTE: A rapid antigen or antibody test will not be accepted. The test must be a molecular test such as a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test (this may be described as PCR, LAMP, RT-LAMP, NAA, NAAT).

If it is less than 72 hours to your scheduled departure and you do not have a valid test, please call our contact centre to discuss your options.

If you booked through a Travel Agent (online or directly), Corporate Travel arranger, or another airline, please contact them directly.

WestJet is actively working to adhere to these recent requirements. We continue to monitor the situation closely and will provide updates as new information becomes available.

Please visit travel.gc.ca for the most up to date and accurate information.

Government FAQs   See all requirements for entry to Canada

Testing in your destination

We’ve gathered a few places to start your search for a lab in your location, for information purposes only. We are unable to guarantee the quality or accuracy of the information provided. The details on these resources may change at any time and guests are encouraged to check back regularly.

US cities

Search for a lab or pharmacy in your US location

WestJet Vacation destinations

To assist our guests, a number of providers have advised that they are able to provide PCR tests to Canadians in the following locations:

Cancun, Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos, Huatulco, Mazatlán, Punta Cana, Puerto Plata, La Romana, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Barbados.

PCR testing facility information (PDF) In-hotel testing information (PDF)

Where to get a test in Canada: Alberta, BC, Ontario

Albertans requiring a test as an entry requirement for travel to international destinations can receive a DynaLIFE COVID-19 test at participating local pharmacies for a fee. Learn about DynaLIFE.

Guests in BC and Ontario who require a test as an entry requirement for travel to international destinations can receive a COVID-19 test from select LifeLabs locations.

Book a test in Ontario
See BC LifeLabs locations

COVID-19 testing program partnerships:

WestJet is supporting pre- and post-travel initiatives to increase confidence in the travelling public and help in the fight against COVID-19.

From Alberta to Hawaii and more

Pre-departure testing for Hawaii

Get tested prior to departure in BC, Ontario or Alberta for destinations that require a negative COVID PCR test for entry.

Learn about pre-departure testing.

Peace bridge looking toward downtown Calgary

International arrival testing at Calgary International Airport (YYC)

Eligible travelers may reduce quarantine by participating in COVID testing upon arrival into YYC.

Learn about the Alberta COVID testing trial.

Still harbour water in the city of Vancouver

Pre-flight testing at Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

We’re sponsors of an University of British Columbia and Providence Health Care study for select guests flying from YVR.

Learn about the rapid testing study in YVR.

CN Tower in Toronto Ontario

International arrival testing at Toronto Pearson Airport (YYZ)

Eligible guests can participate in COVID testing upon arrival into YYZ.

Learn about the Ontario COVID testing trial.

WestJet expands pre-departure testing for Hawaii

Guests originating in British Columbia, Ontario and Alberta travelling on a WestJet operated flight to Hawaii, with a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours, can eliminate quarantine upon arrival.

Guests originating in British Columbia, Ontario and Alberta travelling on a WestJet operated flight to Hawaii can now get tested for COVID-19 prior to departure, eliminating quarantine time upon arrival.

We’ve collaborated with testing partner LifeLabs in British Columbia and Ontario to offer State of Hawaii-approved pre-departure testing. In addition, we are working with laboratory partner DynaLIFE to offer pre-departure testing for travel to Hawaii from Alberta. A negative COVID PCR test within 72 hours of departure will exempt the guest from the state’s required 10-day quarantine.

Testing is not required for children under 5.

Labs & fees

 

To avoid quarantine when travelling to Hawaii, guests must:

  1. Set up a Safe Travels Hawaii account for each travelling adult at travel.hawaii.gov
  2. Take a PCR test at a DynaLIFE (AB), LifeLabs (ON) or LifeLabs (BC - see above) participating pharmacy or clinic location within 72-hours of their flight departing to Hawaii
  3. Complete the Travel Health Questionnaire and upload a PDF copy of your negative PCR test results on Safe Travels within 24 hours of your flight departure to receive a personalized QR code
  4. Display the Safe Travels QR code and negative PCR test result from DynaLIFE or LifeLabs during boarding
  5. Complete the final screening process upon arrival into Hawaii by showing the personalized QR code, negative PCR test results, government ID, and be prepared to demonstrate their method of communication for the daily health check-in (i.e. cell phone)
  6. Enjoy Aloha!

Important

All guests traveling to Hawaii are required to complete the Hawaii Safe Travels form and have a personalized QR code to present, regardless of the intent to complete a pre-arrival COVID testing process.

If a negative test is not uploaded or manually verified prior to departure, guests will be required to quarantine for 10 days on arrival.

See Hawaii entry requirements

Even with a negative test result, as per Transport Canada, you’ll still need to wear a mask during your flight and comply with all existing COVID-19 requirements.

Rapid antigen tests will not be accepted for WestJet flights to Hawaii.

 

Alberta residents and eligible international travellers arriving on a non-stop flight into Calgary can take a test for COVID-19 and possibly reduce their mandatory quarantine with a negative test. This includes those connecting to airports within Alberta. There is no fee for the test. 

NOTE: the AB testing pilot does not remove the guests's responsiblity to obtain a PCR test within 72 hours of their departure to Canada. Learn about the PCR test required for entry to Canada.

 

After taking the COVID test, guests must:

  • stay within Alberta after their arrival
  • enter quarantine until test results are delivered in as little as 2 days
    • If the results are negative, guests are no longer required to stay at home. If results are positive, the 14-day quarantine is still required.
  • commit to submitting a second test after 6-7 days for validation and data collection
  • provide daily check-ins and
  • wear a mask in public
  • If your test results are negative, see how your movement will be restricted without quarantine. If positive, you’ll need to remain in quarantine.

Guests who do not participate in the pilot must adhere to the 14-day quarantine.

To reduce quarantine when arriving in Alberta, eligible guests must:

  1. Register online with the Alberta Government (up to 5 days before arrival at Calgary International Airport) and complete ArriveCan application prior to arrival into YYC.
  2. Proceed through Canada Customs and Immigration (CBSA) and the Public Health (PHAC) process on arrival to determine eligibility.
  3. Complete final registration using an Alberta Health card and Alberta driver’s license (Alberta residents) or passport (all other eligible guests).
  4. Proceed to take the test and proceed immediately to quarantine until advised of the test result, generally within 24-48 hours. Follow all other instructions provided by AHS or PHAC.

The University of British Columbia and Providence Health Care are conducting a voluntary clinical research study, sponsored by WestJet and Vancouver Airport Authority. The study is investigating a method of rapid-testing for COVID-19 for departing passengers prior to security screening at Vancouver International Airport (YVR).

The voluntary study is open to WestJet guests on their day of travel who meet the following criteria:

  • Between the ages of 19 and 90
  • Residents of Canada who have access to accommodation for a 14-day period in the Vancouver area for safe-isolation as per public health guidelines, in the event that the test result is positive
  • Ticketed for any WestJet flight
  • Have a minimum of 70 minutes to participate if travelling on a domestic flight within Canada or 90 minutes to participate if travelling internationally or to the United States

You will not be eligible if you have previously tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 90 days and you do not provide written, informed consent.

Please note: if you are eligible, you must have a minimum of 70 minutes to participate; however, we recommend arriving at the airport no less than two hours before departure to allow for plenty of time for testing, check-in, bag drop and security. You will be required to wait 20-30 minutes for test results.

What if my rapid test is positive?

  • You will be ineligible to travel and will be required to undergo further Health Canada-approved confirmatory testing to diagnose your COVID-19 status.
  • You will receive an information pamphlet with details on when and how to rebook your flight. You will be able to reschedule or cancel your flight at no cost for yourself and any other members listed on your reservation.

What if my rapid test is negative?

  • As per Transport Canada requirements, you’ll still need to wear a mask during your flight and comply with all existing COVID-19 requirements.

While we do not expect the testing to add much time to the airport journey, WestJet suggests arriving at the airport no less than two hours before departure to allow for plenty of time for testing, check-in, bag drop and security. Those who do not meet check-in, baggage drop or boarding cut-off times may be denied travel.

As a thank you, all participants of the study will be provided with a coupon code for 20% off a future WestJet flight upon completion of the test.

To register for the study, please click here.

Pre-departure testing required for entry to United States

As of January 26, 2021, the United States Centre for Disease Control (CDC) requires all guests entering the United States from international origins, 2 years of age and over, to present a negative COVID-19 test result (PCR or rapid antigen), or documentation of recovery before boarding. Learn about pre-departure testing requirements for the United States

Pre-departure testing required for entry to Canada

Transport Canada requires that all guests entering Canada from international destinations, 5 years of age and over, to present a negative COVID-19 PCR test result before boarding. Learn about pre-departure testing requirements for Canada.

Where to get a test in Canada

Albertans requiring a test as an entry requirement for travel to international destinations can receive a DynaLIFE COVID-19 test at participating local pharmacies for a fee. Learn about DynaLIFE.

Guests in BC and Ontario who require a test as an entry requirement for travel to international destinations can receive a COVID-19 test from select LifeLabs locations.

Book a test in Ontario
See BC LifeLabs locations

Before paying for pre-departure testing, verify that the type of test and available timing will satisfy the entry requirements of your destination.

FAQs

Yes, the test needs to be taken within 72 hours of the original scheduled departure time so if your flight is delayed, your test will be accepted.

No, the WestJet travel insurance coverage administered by TuGo does not cover the costs associated with COVID-19 testing. However, if your test result is positive for COVID-19 you are covered assistance in your destination.

See full details of the coverage

Yes, Transport Canada requires all guests entering Canada to provide a negative COVID test result before boarding. Even with a negative test, guests are required to quarantine on arrival for 14 days. You can still participate in the AB testing pilot on arrival in YYC, which may reduce that quarantine time.

Alberta’s testing pilot
Transport Canada announcement



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