Page Last Updated: February 12, 2021
As of March 25, 2020 it is mandatory under the Quarantine Act that anyone arriving in British Columbia from outside of Canada self-isolate and monitor for symptoms for 14 days upon their arrival. New arrivals must complete/register a self-isolation plan and complete the federal ArriveCAN application.
UNBC continues to adhere to all orders declared by Provincial Health Officer. Regular monitoring of orders and public health guidance will be part of routine operations. Plans, protocols, and processes will be updated routinely to reflect the dynamic nature of the COVID-19 pandemic.
On this page
- Understanding self-isolation
- Steps to complete before travelling to Canada
- Accommodation options
- Medical support and insurance during self-isolation
- How to access food and other necessities during self-isolation
- UNBC support services available to students during self-isolation
While in self-isolation, to ensure travellers’ awareness and compliance with quarantine requirements, the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) is working with security companies to help complete compliance checks for travellers arriving in Canada.
The Government of Canada currently contacts more than 6,500 travellers each day through live-agent or interactive automated phone calls, which verify travellers compliance with the mandatory isolation order. Should there be concerns raised during these checks, or if they are unable to reach the traveller in question, PHAC may request follow-ups by law enforcement.
Please make yourself familiar with the requirements of self-isolation, self-monitoring and what to do if you do get sick. This information is provided by the BC Centre for Disease Control.
The Do's and Don'ts of Self-Isolation
An easy to follow checklist from the BC Centre for Disease Control to help you self-isolate properly. Includes a number of Frequently asked questions and helpful links.
Before travelling to Canada you will need to submit specific information about your self-isolation plan to both the Government of Canada and the Government of British Columbia.
Information for all travellers
Use this mobile app to speed up your arrival process in Canada and spend less time with border and public health officers. Submit your information easily and securely via the app within 48 hours before arriving in Canada. The app helps you to:
- provide mandatory information that is required for entry into Canada;
- avoid lineups and reduce points of contact at the border;
- provide updates on your quarantine compliance and the development of any symptoms during the 14 days after arriving in Canada
Travellers to British Columbia will also need to submit a Self-Isolation plan to the Government of BC. It is strongly recommended that this plan be submitted prior to arrival.
Information for Air Passengers
On January 29th, 2021, it was announced that in addition to all air passengers five years of age or older being required to test negative for COVID-19 before travelling from another country to Canada, a second test will also be mandatory and administered upon arrival.
Starting February 22nd, 2021, while awaiting the results of the COVID-19 molecular test received on arrival, all air-travellers will be required to stay in and pay for their hotel, as well as all associated costs for food, cleaning and security. The Government of Canada will shortly be producing a list of Public Health Agency of Canada approved hotels for you to make a booking at before you arrive. The Government of Canada currently estimates this will cost $2000 CDN.
Information for travellers entering Canada at the ground border
On February 22nd, 2021, all non-essential travellers at the ground border with the USA will also be required to take a COVID-19 molecular test at the point of entry as well as another test toward the end of the 14-day quarantine period. It is anticipated that further measures for ground travel will soon be announced.
Due to Provincial Health Office Guidelines, students are not able to complete their self-isolation period on-campus.
For students that require a place to self-isolate, UNBC has arranged two options for you. Please note students requiring self-isolation are responsible for these costs.
The Sandman Hotel group has rooms available at a special rate for UNBC students.
Sandman is offering rooms with and without kitchens.
When making the booking, please either email Sandman at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the hotel directly at 1-250-563-8131 , and use UNBC for the group rate. To speak directly to the sales manager call 1-250-645-2154.
The Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel and the Vancouver Airport Marriott Hotel have rooms available at a special rate for UNBC students.
These rooms do not have kitchens, but they will offer an in-room catering service.
Self-isolating when staying with friends or family members
It is recognized that your self-isolation plan may be to self-isolate in a home with friends and family. Extra caution will need to be taken to ensure all members of the household are safe. Please review the following link to ensure this can be done safely, before making the decision to self-isolate in this way.
While in self-isolation, if you require medical attention for issues related to COVID-19 please call Northern Health COVID-19 phone line at 1-844-645-7811
For other medical issues, you should call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 for guidance on how to proceed.
8-1-1 is a free-of-charge provincial health information and advice phone line available in British Columbia. The 8-1-1 phone line is operated by HealthLink BC, which is part of the Ministry of Health. By calling 8-1-1, you can speak to a health service navigator, who can help you find health information and services; or connect you directly with a registered nurse, a registered dietitian, a qualified exercise professional, or a pharmacist. Any one of these healthcare professionals will help you get the information you need to manage your health concerns, or those of your family.
You can also contact our on-campus Medical clinic for guidance and support from our healthcare team at 250-960-6370
New students will have private health insurance provided to them through guard.me insurance. This insurance will provide coverage for your first 120-days in Canada and will start as soon as you begin your travels to Canada. This insurance will be ordered for you by the International office and proof of your policy will be sent to your UNBC email address.
Returning students will continue to have coverage through their existing British Columbia Medical Services Plan.
After you have been authorized to leave the designated self-isolation hotel, you must go directly to your place of self-isolation without delay. In most cases this will mean the use of a taxi to go from one location to another. When in a private vehicle, or taxi, use the back seat and wear a suitable mask or face covering at all times.
If you are returning to Canada from the United states by vehicle and intend to drive to Prince George to self-isolate, please be mindful of the following guidelines:
- Avoid contact with others while in transit
- Remain in the vehicle as much as possible;
- If you need gas, pay at the pump;
- If you need food, use a drive through;
- If you need to use a rest area, put on your mask and be mindful of physical distancing and good hygiene practices.
Below are just a few of the options available to you during self-isolation. We suggest you plan ahead with any grocery delivery to ensure you are able to get groceries the day you arrive.
Groceries - Delivery Service
Pharmacy - Delivery Service
We recognize that this period of self-isolation will have its own unique challenges. Over the two weeks you are in self-isolation you will have access to all the services available to students electronically.
Just because you are in self-isolation does not mean that you can't be social! UNBC Student Life is running all sorts of events online to keep you connected as well as informed.
The International Office staff remain here to help you. To reach a representative from International simply send us an email to email@example.com and we will do whatever we can to assist you during your self-isolation period.