You will still have to wear masks at Pearson Airport in Mississauga

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Published March 10, 2022 at 9:27 pm

Passengers arriving and departing from Pearson Airport in Mississauga will still have to wear a mask at all times come March 21.

The Ontario government’s plan to end masking in most settings on March 21 does not apply inside airports, since those are federally regulated facilities. Transport Canada (TransCan) would ultimately make the call on when passengers would have the option to be unmasked in a terminal or on a flight.

Currently, TransCan’s wording about mask requirements for air travel are crystal-clear.

“You must have a mask or face covering that covers your mouth and nose during your travel through Canadian airports and during your flight. Air operators must notify each passenger, and receive confirmation, that they have a face covering as early as possible during their journey. This prevents situations where passengers arrive at the airport without a mask or face covering and can be done at the online booking or online check-in, or physically at registration or, less ideally, at the check-in counter.”

Some airports across the country in provinces that are also removing COVID-19 protections offered reminders that Ottawa makes the call about airports.

On Thursday, representatives of the travel and tourism industry, along with Greater Toronto Area business leaders, called for the end of a pre-departure rapid antigen test(RAT) for fully vaccinated travellers. They did not appear to mention masks.

Transport Canada’s last revision to those regulations took effect on Feb. 28. Those involved changes to accepted types of pre-entry tests, arrival testing and quarantine. But the pre-departure RAT cannot be taken at home; the feds say “it must be authorized by the country in which it was purchased and must be administered by a laboratory, healthcare entity or telehealth service.”

The business and travel/tourism groups said this requirement has limited business travel to Canada.

The federal regulations are scheduled to be revised on April 1.

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