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YVR prepares for busy Canada Day weekend, shares updates on travel measures and top tips

  • YVR expects to see upwards of 70,000 passengers per day over the Canada Day weekend, making this the airport’s busiest long weekend since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • As summer travel peaks, over 2 million passengers are expected to travel through YVR in July and August.
  • During May and June, YVR saw approximately 1.5 million passengers, bringing total passenger numbers for these two months to nearly 75% of pre-pandemic (2019) levels.
  • Though the federal government announced yesterday that the pause of mandatory random testing will continue at all Canadian airports until mid-July, all travellers entering Canada are required to complete ArriveCAN.

As British Columbians and visitors prepare for travel over the Canada Day long weekend and beyond, Vancouver International Airport (YVR), its airline partners and government agencies are focused on delivering a safe and seamless experience for passengers.

This weekend, YVR is on track to see an average of over 70,000 passengers per day. The airport is expecting Friday, July 1 and Sunday, July 3 to be the peak days for travel. Across any given day, early-to-mid morning will be the heaviest for passenger flow with volume easing late morning and into the afternoon before peaking again in the evening.

With more than 2 million passengers forecast throughout July and August, YVR continues to advise travellers to arrive approximately two hours ahead of domestic flights, and three hours prior for international flights. Passengers should check the latest flight information with their airline before coming to the airport.

“We are thrilled to see the increased demand for air travel and to welcome more passengers through YVR. As we look forward to our busiest weekend since the start of the pandemic, we continue to work closely with our airline and government partners to address the operational and processing challenges that passengers are facing as we collectively rebuild the travel and tourism sector. We encourage passengers to arrive early, and please know that staff across our airport community are working hard to get you on your way safely and as efficiently as possible,” said Mike McNaney, Vice President and Chief External Affairs Officer at Vancouver Airport Authority.

Through its website, the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) provides travellers with useful information for pre-board screening, including tips for packing of carry-on bags and advice for families, seniors, and those with special needs. CATSA also provides information on pre-board screening wait times.

Although the Government of Canada has extended its pause on mandatory random testing for fully vaccinated passengers arriving from an international destination, all travellers entering Canada are required to complete ArriveCAN, details for which can be found on the Government of Canada website. Additionally, passengers can include their customs declaration information through the updated ArriveCAN app, thereby speeding up their processing time through the border at YVR.

Travellers through YVR can look forward to new culinary offerings, including Dirty Apron and Pacific Farms Market as well as a new option to pre-order meals from a number of the airport’s food and beverage and retail stores. YVR has also welcomed more than 80 new team members through its Guest Experience program who, alongside Green Coat volunteers, are stationed at Information Counters and throughout the terminal and are ready to answer any questions you may have.

To help passengers prepare for their next trip through YVR, the airport offers the following tips and information:

Passengers departing from YVR

  • Arrive early. YVR encourages everyone flying out to arrive at the airport early—approximately two hours ahead of domestic flights and three hours for U.S. and international.
  • Have a parking plan. If you’re driving to the airport, here are four ways to park at YVR.
  • Know before you go. Be sure to understand the entry requirements of your destination. Have your travel documents, including your passport and proof of vaccination and test results if required, ready before you check in for your flight. Learn more about testing options at YVR.
  • Follow latest health measures. Masks continue to be required in the terminal and onboard your flight.
  • Take note of curbside and in-terminal signs for departure information. Follow curbside and in-terminal signs to help you navigate easily to your airline check-in counter and gate. Learn more about checking in for your flight here.
  • Be prepared for passenger screening. Please be patient as CATSA staff are doing their best under very busy and challenging circumstances and be prepared to help agents move you through screening as efficiently as possible. Ensure liquids, gels and aerosols are in containers that are under 100 milliliters and are packaged into one transparent, closed, and resealable plastic bag with a capacity of no more than one litre. Check the full list of CATSA requirements here.
  • Questions? More information to help you plan your trip is available at We’re also available on social media: @YVRairport.

Passengers arriving in Canada

  • ArriveCAN continues to be mandatory for all travellers to Canada. Travellers arriving at YVR can include their customs declaration information through the updated ArriveCAN app thereby speeding up their processing. More information can be found here.
  • More information on travel to Canada can be found here.

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