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Fernie Travel & COVID Updates

Friday • December 3, 2021

Travel is allowed to Fernie for domestic/Canadian travellers and for most international travellers that are fully vaccinated.

NOTICE: November rains, updates specific to Fernie. Highways to Fernie are open from Alberta, USA and BC Interior/Okanagan.

Safety is important to you and to us. Let's all follow the rules and be respectful and kind. Please continue reading for details.

As of November 30th, 88% of Fernie area residents 12 years of age and older have had their 1st shot, 83% are fully vaccinated (view BC data). There are 6 active COVID-19 cases, as of November 20th in the Fernie & Elk Valley area. Children aged 5-11 are now eligible to be vaccinated, read more.

USA & International Travellers

International border travel is controlled by the Canadian Government. Fully vaccinated USA & most International travellers are welcome to visit Canada. Pre-travel process, testing and proof of vaccination are required. Vaccinations must be those approved by the Canadian government

NEW - Arrival testing for all international travellers except USA.

All travellers going into Canada must use the ArriveCAN App prior to travelling to Canada. You'll need to submit your information within 72 hours before your arrival to Canada. This requirement is also for Canadians coming back into Canada.

For unvaccinated children under 12 without symptoms and travelling with fully vaccinated parents or guardians, please read.

Ensure you are aware of any travel requirements by your own government on your return back into your country. Allow the time needed for any COVID-19 testing required to return. Have a plan if you test positive while in Canada.

Citizens of the United States that are travelling by vehicle via land border crossing from Canada to the USA do not need a COVID-19 test to return to the USA. COVID-19 test is required however for those travelling by air back to the USA. Read more.

International & Canadian travellers are now permitted to travel to the United States if they are fully vaccinated.

Vaccination Requirement

For British Columbia, proof of full vaccination will be required for the below activities. Please have your official provincial vaccination details with your photo identification (passport, drivers licence, official photo ID card). For international visitors have your proof of vaccination used to enter Canada and your passport.

The only exemption at this time will be children under 12 that are either not able to be vaccinated yet or have yet to be vaccinated. The BC Government states that there is no exemption at this time for those unable to get the vaccine for health or religious reasons.

Fernie Alpine Resort, Island Lake Catskiing and FWA Catskiing, require all guests and staff to be fully vaccinated this season. This includes riding the chairlifts. READ MORE

Indoor activities that require proof of vaccination by the BC Government include:

  • Licensed restaurants and cafes that offer table service (indoor and patio dining), including liquor tasting rooms in wineries, breweries or distilleries
  • Pubs, bars and lounges (indoor and patio dining)
  • Indoor organized events with 50 or more people. For example: wedding and funeral receptions (outside of a funeral home), organized parties, conferences, trade fairs and workshops
  • Indoor ticketed sporting events with more than 50 people
  • Indoor concerts, theatre, dance and symphony events with more than 50 people
  • Nightclubs, casinos and movie theatres
  • Gyms, exercise/dance facilities/studios and these activities happening in recreation facilities
  • Businesses offering indoor exercise/fitness
  • Indoor adult group and team sports for people 22 years old or older
  • Indoor organized group recreational classes and activities with more than 50 people like pottery, art and choir
  • Spectators at indoor youth sporting events with more than 50 people
  • Additional Details

These new proof of vaccination measures are in place until at least January 31st, 2022, however, the BC Govt may extend this date and will be reassessing monthly.

Current Mask & Gathering Restrictions

  • Masks are mandatory in public indoor spaces in all of BC for those aged 5 and older, including those vaccinated. Some exceptions apply.
  • NEW - As of December 1, 2021 there are no more capacity restrictions on indoor and outdoor personal gatherings.
  • UPDATED - As of December 1, 2021:
    • Indoor organized gathings/events:
      • There are no capacity restrictions, however, if more than 50 people are attending:
        • Proof of full vaccination is required, dancing is not permitted, masks are still required and all must be seated for concerts, weddings, performances, funerals, lectures, presentations, ticketed or sponsored parties.
        • You do not need to remain seated at conventions, trade shows, conferences (except during lectures, presentations, workshops), recreational classes and activities (art, choir, etc)
    • Outdoor organized seated gatherings can have a capacity of 5,000 people or 50% capacity (whichever is greater). For example, if the outdoor venue has a normal seated capacity of 30,000 people, 15,000 people can attend.

Need a COVID TEST?

Testing for Travel Purposes:

NEW: Starting November 30th fully vaccinated Canadian's will not be required to take a PCR/COVID test to re-enter Canada from the USA for short trips under 72 hours. Read details.

The nearest location to Fernie for COVID-19 is in Cranbrook, an hour drive west of Fernie. For details visit:

Testing is also available at the Calgary and Vancouver International Airports for travellers flying, but must be booked in advance.

  • Calgary and at the Calgary International Airport with Numi Health
  • Vancouver and at the Vancouver International Airport with LifeLabs

Testing in USA, nearby locations:

Local COVID-19 testing is in Sparwood (20 min drive from Fernie) but is only for those experiencing symptoms or those who have been sent for testing by local health care providers.

If you are unwell call 811 to discuss your symptoms or visit local emergency at the Fernie Hospital. A COVID-19 test can be booked online at "Book a Covid-19 Test”. Alternatively, the Test Booking Phone line can be reached by calling 1-877-740-7747.

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