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Reporting requirements for private boaters

Attention ArriveCAN users

Travellers using ArriveCAN must identify:

If your precise travel details do not appear in the app, select any available option. This will allow you to continue to the next screen, complete your submission and enter Canada.

This section summarizes important information for private boaters who are navigating Canadian waters or hoping to enter Canada by boat.

Reporting requirements for boaters

To limit the introduction and spread of COVID-19 and its variants, the Government of Canada has put in place measures that you must follow when entering Canada.

ArriveCAN is mandatory for all travellers

Travellers arriving by marine mode are required to submit their mandatory information including their proof of vaccination in ArriveCAN before or when entering Canada.

ArriveCAN is available to download as a mobile app or you can create an account and sign in online.

Canadians, permanent residents and persons registered under the Indian Act

Canadian citizens, permanent residents and persons registered under the Indian Act and permanent residents continue to enter Canada by right, and are subject to COVID-19 measures.

Uninterrupted travel outside Canadian waters: If you leave and re-enter Canadian waters without interruptionFootnote 1, you do not have to report to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) or meet COVID-19 border and health requirements.

Interrupted travel outside Canadian waters: If you leave and re-enter Canadian waters with interruptionFootnote 1, upon re-entry, you must report to the CBSA and you will be subject to COVID-19 border and health requirements.

Foreign nationals

Fully vaccinated foreign nationals

Fully vaccinated foreign nationals who land on Canadian soil, anchor, moor or come alongside another boat in Canadian waters:

If you enter Canadian waters for leisure and touring, including pleasure fishing or sightseeing (known as loop movements), you are not required to report to the CBSA as long as the boat does not land on Canadian soil, anchor, moor or come alongside another boat in Canadian waters.

Foreign national boaters who do not qualify as fully vaccinated

Travel to Canada is still prohibited for foreign nationals who do not qualify as fully vaccinated.

If you enter Canadian waters for leisure and touring, including pleasure fishing, sightseeing and other discretionary purposes (known as loop movements), you are not required to report to the CBSA as long as the boat does not land on Canadian soil, anchor, moor or come alongside another boat in Canadian waters.

While in transit to your destination

You may navigate through Canadian waters while in transit from outside Canada.

You must:

  • report immediately when you anchor in Canadian waters or come to port
  • follow all instructions provided by the border services or quarantine officer
  • quarantine on your vessel and make arrangements for contactless re-fuelling and re-stocking of essential items with the marina operator
  • follow physical distancing practices and wear a mask during these stops

If you're transiting through a canal or lock system, you must meet all of COVID-19 border and health requirements.

You can only make essential stops while in transit or doing loop movements, including to use facilities, refuel or for essential supplies. If you make essential stops, you must first report to the CBSA at an open designated marine reporting site. You will be subject to all entry requirements.

If you make any stops for non-essential purposes, you must report to the CBSA and you will be required to leave Canada immediately.

More information

Anchoring and quarantine requirements

You may stop and anchor out of your planned navigation, particularly if it becomes dangerous to navigate at night or if the crew must rest before safely continuing your trip.

If you anchor to spend the night, you must quarantine on your vessel or boat. If this is not possible, you may quarantine at a hotel until you are ready to resume your trip.

If your first stop in Canada is at a place that is not a CBSA designated marine reporting site (in case of bad weather conditions), you must report immediately to the CBSA Telephone Reporting Centre by calling 1-888-226-7277.

More information

Reporting options

Before you travel to Canada, note that you can only enter at an open marine reporting site and you will be subject to all of Canada’s COVID-19 border and health requirements.

As the operator of a boat entering Canadian waters with the intent to disembark, it is your responsibility to report to the CBSA.

For vessels carrying fewer than 30 passengers, there are two ways to report in order to enter Canada at an open designated marine reporting site.

Telephone Reporting centre

At an open marine reporting site, follow the instructions posted on location to contact the CBSA’s Telephone Reporting Centre and request clearance to enter Canada.

Toll free: 1-888-226-7277

Only the operator may leave the boat to place the call. Everyone else must remain onboard until the CBSA authorizes entry.

Direct reporting sites for marine private vessels

Report directly in-person at one of the open designated marine reporting site locations, staffed by the CBSA.

Passenger groups of 30 or more entering Canadian waters, you cannot be cleared by telephone upon arrival.

You must notify the CBSA at least 72 hours before you arrive in Canadian waters in writing, including:

  • the details of your arrival
  • a request for CBSA clearance

For more information, contact:

Telephone Reporting Centre (TRC):
Toll free: 1-888-226-7277

Border Information Service (BIS):
Toll free: 1-800-461-9999

Making a report

All travellers seeking entry to Canada are subject to strict screening measures by officials at the border.

As the operator of the boat, only you can report to the CBSA. You will need to report:

Information to provide: Canadian citizens, permanent residents and persons registered under the Indian Act

You must present the following to the border services officer upon entry:

Information to provide: Foreign nationals

You must present the following to the border services officer upon entry:

Declarations for all passengers

All passengers must declare:

Restricted and prohibited goods include, but are not limited to:

Undeclared restricted and prohibited goods found on board will be seized and you could face criminal charges.

Note: Residents of Canada must also provide details about any repairs or modifications made to goods, including the boat, while these items were outside Canada.

More information

CBSA report number and secondary inspection

A border services officer will determine whether further verification or examination is needed. If you do not need further verification, the officer will provide you with a report number. If a secondary inspection is necessary, the officer will advise you to remain at the inspection site, or to go to one if you are reporting from the water, and to ensure that all goods and passengers remain onboard. The border services officer who conducts the secondary inspection will provide you with the report number.

Failure to report

The CBSA and its law enforcement partners are actively monitoring Canadian waterways. Failure to report to the CBSA may result in detention, seizure or forfeiture of your boat and/or monetary penalties.

If you fail to report, even if your purpose is non-discretionary (non-optional) such as to refuel, you may face severe penalties. The minimum fine for failing to report to the CBSA upon entry to Canada is CAN$1,000.

Failure to report may also affect your immigration admissibility and ability to re-enter Canada in the future.

The Public Health Agency of Canada is responsible for the Quarantine Act, including the development of the Emergency Orders. Failure to comply with the Prohibition on Entry orders or the Quarantine, Isolation and Other Obligations order is an offence under the Quarantine Act and could lead to fines, imprisonment or both.

Foreign nationals who provide false information could also be denied entry and be banned from returning to Canada.

More information

Appealing a seizure or penalty

You have the right to appeal a seizure or penalty. To do so, you must send a written submission to the Recourse Directorate of the CBSA. To be considered, your appeal must be filed within 90 days of the seizure or penalty.

For more information on appeals, visit Appeals and reviews.

Faster processing with the NEXUS program

COVID-19 update: Resumption of NEXUS/FAST interviews at U.S. enrolment centres

NEXUS and FAST interviews will resume at enrolment centres in the U.S. on . Starting , applicants wishing to schedule interviews can do so at their nearest U.S. enrolment centre through the Trusted Traveller portal. You are encouraged to renew your membership before the expiry date to retain your membership privileges.

All travellers, including NEXUS members, are subject to strict screening and security measures by the CBSA’s border services officers. NEXUS members are required to call the NEXUS marine reporting number at least 30 minutes (minimum) and up to four hours in advance of their arrival in Canada to provide advance notification of arrival and to allow for expedited processing. All persons on board must be NEXUS members in order to take advantage of NEXUS reporting procedures. For more information on NEXUS reporting procedures visit NEXUS - Marine.

Contact information

Telephone Reporting Centre:
Toll free: 1-888-226-7277

NEXUS telephone reporting line:
Toll free: 1-866-99-NEXUS (1-866-996-3987)

Border Information Services:
Toll free: 1-800-461-9999

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