World news – Canadian airlines in Ottawa have agreed to suspend flights to sun destinations

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Solarina Ho
CTVNews.ca Writer

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TORONTO –
The federal government and Canada’s major airlines announced on Friday that flights to sun destinations will be suspended until May to help curb the spread of COVID-19 and its variants.

Air Canada, WestJet, Sunwing and Air Transat will be canceling flights to all Caribbean destinations and Mexico from January 31 to April 30, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced in a press conference on Friday.

The airlines will make arrangements with customers currently traveling in the affected regions to organize their return flights.

« We appreciate the work Canadian airlines and their frontline workers did to make air travel safer and bring Canadians home when this pandemic broke out last spring. » Trudeau said.

« Given the challenges we are currently facing with COVID-19 domestically and internationally, we all agree that now is simply not the time to fly. »

Trudeau said the government is taking tough action now and is committed to a safe restart of travel and tourism once conditions improve, « ideally later this year ».

Ottawa and the airlines will work together on the future of COVID-19 testing and quarantine requirements, he added.

« This will enable the safe and gradual return to international air travel based on science and evidence. »

The new measures follow Trudeau’s announcement that all Canadian travelers returning from overseas will have to take a COVID-19 test at the airport if they land and quarantine a certain hotel at their own expense for at least three days. p>
Those who test negative are allowed to quarantine themselves at home for the remainder of the mandatory two-week period. Those who test positive must then be quarantined at designated government facilities.

An airplane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, BC on May 13, 2019. (Jonathan Hayward / THE CANADIAN PRESS)

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