Ottawa, October 21, 2021 – Mike McNaney, President and CEO of the National Airlines Council of Canada, which represents Canada’s largest air carriers (Air Canada, Air Transat, Jazz Aviation LP and WestJet) issued the following statement concerning today’s announcement by the federal government of a standardized proof of vaccination system for domestic and international travel, or “vaccination passport”:

“Since the outset of the pandemic, Canada’s major airlines have been committed to protecting employee and passenger health and fully supported the travel and employee vaccination requirements when first announced by the federal government in August.

We welcome today’s announcement by the Prime Minister that all provinces and territories will be issuing a standardized and digital proof of vaccination that will enable Canadians to securely and quickly demonstrate their vaccination status in order to travel within Canada and abroad. Release of this new “vaccination passport” utilizing the SMART Health Card standard is critical for the effective implementation of the mandatory vaccination mandate.  We urge those provinces that have yet to release the new standardized proof of vaccination to do so as quickly as possible.

With aviation becoming one of the only sectors requiring fully vaccinated employees and customers, it is imperative that the government work with us and determine what other travel measures can now be amended in-keeping with global practices, such as elimination of blanket advisories against travel, elimination of mandatory PCR testing pre-departure for fully vaccinated international travellers coming to Canada, and enabling children under 12 to be exempt from de facto home quarantine.

As these new measures are implemented, Canada’s major carriers will maintain their ongoing support for vaccination campaigns, while continuing to invest heavily in the safe restart of travel and tourism in order to drive our national economic recovery in every region of the country.”

About the National Airlines Council of Canada:

The National Airlines Council of Canada represents Canada’s largest national and international passenger air carriers:  Air Canada, Air Transat, Jazz Aviation LP and WestJet.  It promotes safe, sustainable and competitive air travel by advocating for the development of policies, regulations and legislation to foster a world-class transportation system.  Pre-pandemic our members collectively carried over 80 million passengers annually, directly employed over 60,000 people and served as a critical component of Canada’s overall air transport and tourism sector, which supported more than 630,000 jobs.

For media requests, please contact Francesca Iacurto, Senior Director, Public Affairs, National Airlines Council of Canada; [email protected]; Telephone: (613) 231-7223 ext. 1040