The holiday season is about to start. Holiday means special treats, festive décor, and plenty of folks making plans to take the roads and skies. We know the feelings of holidays are very personal for you. Millions of people are ready to hit the steep and smooth ways for the Christmas holidays. 

But the appearance of the Omicron variant of Covid-19, which was declared a variant of concern by the WHO, has wiped the world. Throwing many travellers and plans into a question and a holding pattern. 

The beam of hope is that the spread of Omicron is concerning, and some experts used to say you should not cancel the Christmas holiday plans just yet.

Here is everything travellers should know about the Omicron, along with testing requirements from Canada to the United States and holiday travel safety tips to take with them on the way.

What is the Omicron Variant of Covid-19?

This variant was first detected in Southern Africa. It was reported to WHO on November 24. After two days, WHO declared Omicron a “variant of concern”. Because this variant, owing to its large number of mutations. It has since spread across the globe, including to the United States.

Many countries, including the U.S., were quick to ban travel from southern African countries and impose new travel restrictions, but the variant has continued to spread worldwide. 

According to the CDC, Omicron is detected in more than 20 states in the USA. 

The CDC said the variant will likely spread “more easily than the original SARS-CoV-2 virus.” There are still many questions about how contagious and deadly the variant is.

“More data are needed to determine whether omicron infections, particularly reinfections and breakthrough infections in fully vaccinated people, cause more severe illness or death than infection with other variants,” the agency wrote. “Vaccines against other variants, such as Delta, have remained effective in preventing severe illness, hospitalizations, and death. The recent emergence of Omicron emphasizes the importance of immunization and booster shots.”

Is it Safe to Travel with an Omicron Variant of Covid-19?

Right now, you can travel and live your everyday life to some extent, but keep in mind all the precautions you can take to be as safe as possible. But take some simple precautions like adopting in everyday life, like getting vaccinated and wearing masks.

“Everyone’s risk tolerance is different. There are steps you can take to reduce your risk. You can be immunized, get a booster shot, and use rapid tests to ensure you’re not infectious.”

On the other hand, the WHO has advised at-risk groups not to travel to areas where community transmission is present, such as people who aren’t fully vaccinated and are at a higher risk of developing severe disease or dying, such as those aged 60.

Covid 19 Testing

Travel Testing Requirements from Canada to the U.S

The U.S. will begin permitting fully vaccinated Canadians to enter the country for discretionary (non-essential) purposes, including tourism, at land and ferry point of entry.

The Canadian Border Agency would like to inform travellers that border controls remain in effect for those entering or returning to Canada and should be educated and understand their responsibilities as they plan their trips.

Before crossing the border, travellers should determine if they can enter Canada and complete all entry criteria. To assist their return to Canada, Canadian folks should inquire with their home province or territory about obtaining COVID-19 evidence of immunization.

Fully vaccinated travellers arriving in Canada must perform the necessary pre-arrival molecular COVID-19 test. And submit their mandatory information, including digital evidence of vaccination. Fully vaccinated folks are eligible to enter Canada. 

If you want to enjoy your holidays and don’t want to spoil the Christmas gathering plans with your family and friends, then take the quick services of Swift Clinic.

COVID-19 testing is accessible through Swift Clinics for passengers travelling overseas that require a negative result. Many destination nations demand and accept a valid travel-related PCR lab certificate, which we supply.

Passengers are responsible for verifying all criteria for their destination and any specific details about testing or reporting. According to our Covid-19 tests, you can travel from Canada to the U.S.

PCR test for travelers

What Type of Test can you get From Swift Clinics?

Swift Clinics conducts all testing on Health Canada-approved testing equipment, and registered medical professionals administer all tests. 

COVID-19 was detected by PCR and antigen assays. Showing whether or not an active infection exists. Antigen testing is less accurate than PCR tests, yet they are acceptable for travel purposes in some nations.

Antibodies proteins are produced by the immune system in response to infections. The COVID-19 Antibody blood test reveals antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins. This test can be used to determine whether a person has recently been infected with SARS-CoV-2.