TORONTO — Ahead of the busy March Break travel season, the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) has provided useful tips for travellers on how to ensure a seamless experience at Toronto Pearson (YYZ).
According to the GTAA, the busiest day of the period is expected to be on March 11, when approximately 85,000 passengers will either be arriving or departing at YYZ. This will mark the busiest travel day at the airport since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic two years ago.
While select travel restrictions have been eased, for the March Break period, GTAA is warning that delays are still possible and longer wait times are to be expected due to many health measures still in place as well as staffing challenges similar to those in other service sectors.
GTAA is asking passengers to “pack their patience” and be kind to workers.
Here’s an overview of what to expect at Pearson for the March Break period:
As travel is different than prior to the pandemic, passengers should give themselves even more time when arriving for their flight. In addition to process changes, passengers may experience longer wait times during check-in, security and boarding their aircraft as there are still additional screening questions and health checks in place at Canada’s airports.
Passengers are advised to arrive at the airport at least 90 minutes in advance of domestic flights and at least three hours in advance of international flights. While at Pearson, passengers can choose from the airport’s wide variety of food and beverage options, including sit-down restaurants and take-out offerings. Travellers can also order ahead of time for pick-up with Uber Eats to skip the line, available in select restaurants.
Due to government measures in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19, passengers arriving from international destinations will experience additional screening and health checks, which may result in delays.
When going through customs, passengers will be required to answer additional health questions. In order to expedite their arrivals experience, international passengers are encouraged to use the Advanced CBSA Declaration feature within ArriveCAN online to fill in their customs and immigration declaration up to 72 hours in advance of flying in to Canada.
Finally, all fully vaccinated travellers eligible to enter Canada must provide a valid pre-arrival COVID-19 antigen test result taken no more than one day before their flight’s scheduled departure, or a molecular test result ta ken no more than 72 hours before their flight’s scheduled departure.
- As of Feb. 28, 2022, the Government of Canada has eased border restrictions. To learn more about the current measures in place, click here.
- Access to the terminals is limited to airport employees and to passengers with a boarding pass, or to those whose itinerary involves same-day travel. While in terminal, all passengers and airport employees must wear masks at all times, with limited exceptions. Pearson’s approach to keeping travellers safe and healthy continues to evolve with the pandemic, and for the second year in a row, Pearson has received Airports Council International’s Global Health Accreditation for its Healthy Airport program. To learn more, click here.
- Visit GTAA’s Travel Hub at https://www.torontopearson.com/en/ready-to-travel for a comprehensive travel guide.
- Through the new Advance CBSA Declaration, international travellers arriving at Toronto Pearson can now use ArriveCAN online to prepare their customs and immigration declaration before arriving in Canada. Travellers to Canada must continue to use ArriveCAN for the mandatory submission of their travel and contact information, quarantine plan, pre-entry test results, proof of vaccination (if applicable) and COVID-19 symptom self-assessments.
- COVID-19 testing services are available at Pearson. The tests, conducted by Switch Health, are available to both departing passengers and members of the community who aren’t travelling but need access to testing services. Tests can be booked in advance via Switch Health’s booking portal by visiting ca/healthyairport.
- Passengers headed to the terminals for March Break are encouraged to learn more about in-terminal activities to keep themselves – and their kids – entertained. Visit torontopearson.com for more information.