Photo Credit: Emma McIntyre
Toronto International Film Festival Is Back: 7 Things To Know About Canadian Travel
After a year of being virtual, the Toronto International Film Festival has returned for in-person get-togethers.
There are some changes, of course — really, what hasn’t changed over this past year? — but assuming all goes well, the festival will run from September 9 to 18, 2021.
But the biggest change is in the number of public screenings. “Following the Province of Ontario and the City of Toronto’s most recent guidelines for cinemas, TIFF Bell Lightbox cinemas remain closed for public film screenings,” the Toronto International Film Festival organizers said on their official website.
“As a not-for-profit cultural organization with a mission to bring the transformative power of film to audiences, the continued closure of our building impacts our financial health and limits the connection we have with our audiences. We look forward to welcoming audiences back to our cinemas when it is safe and feasible to do so.”
Additionally, the province has mask mandates whose rules continue to change over time, so it’s imperative to stay on top of them as they are announced.
But for those who wish to venture to the Great White North, you’re in luck: fares are lower than ever before, and hotels — once cost-prohibitive — are now getting easier to book. It goes without saying that the longer you wait, though, the more expensive things will get.
So, dust off your passport, get your luggage, and use these 7 helpful tips to book your up north trip to the Toronto International Film Festival.
COVID vaccination is NOT optional
Want to come to Canada? Get vaccinated at least 14 days beforehand. No exceptions. No excuses. And if you don’t, expect to be turned away at the border.
Pfizer-BioNtech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD vaccines are all acceptable for entry.
You must test negative for COVID, even if you've been vaccinated
“All travelers, regardless of vaccination status, will need to show proof of a coronavirus molecular test– such as a PCR test – to enter,” reports USA Today.
Bring proof — all of it
The easiest way to verify all your proof of vaccination and COVID testing is through Canada’s ArriveCan app. If you’re driving to the Toronto International Film Festival, you have to input your information 72 hours before your arrival. If you’re flying, input it 24 hours before.
And don't fake it, either
Remember those two Canadian travelers who were fined $20,000 for faking their COVID documents? We do.
You must follow the local mask mandates — even if they're not the same as where you're coming from
Unlike the United States, wearing a mask in Canada is a matter of public health, not a political tool in a culture war. Following mask mandates is not optional, and the Canadian government doesn’t want to hear about Trump, HIPPA violations, or “MUH FREEDOMS.”
If you want to come to Canada for the Toronto International Film Festival, wear a mask. It’s that simple.
Be prepared to quarantine
Check the official page that the Canadian government has set up regarding mandatory quarantine. As of August 9th, mandatory quarantine has been lifted for American travelers who come to the Toronto International Film Festival by air. However, that is not the case for non-American travelers.
Things are subject to change at any time — so make alternate plans if you can
Everything said here is valid as of this writing. However, with the Toronto International Film Festival more than a month away, things are subject to change at any given time. It’s strongly recommended to have backup or alternate plans in the event things change.