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Canada to require negative Covid-19 test: Where you can get one in Costa Rica

Canada will require travelers to obtain a negative Covid-19 test before being allowed into the country, the government announced last Wednesday. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests will need to be conducted within three days of boarding a flight, officials told a news conference. Upon arrival, travelers will still have to quarantine for 14 days. The Minister of Transport, Marc Garneau, says the new measures will be effective starting January 7.

It applies to all air passengers five years of age or older. "This implementation date provides all airlines, both foreign and domestic, adequate time to comply with the new requirements," the Canadian government said in a statement. It comes after a new strain was identified in Britain, and has already spread to Canada.

Only about two percent of Covid-19 cases in Canada have been traced to recent travel. Its borders have been closed to most non-essential travel since March, and last week Canada halted entry of all flights from Britain over the new virus variant. Days later, Ottawa confirmed the first cases of the particularly infectious coronavirus variant in Canada.

Where to get tested in Costa Rica

Costa Rica citizens and residents can get tested for free through the Caja.

Call the coronavirus hotline (dial 1322) for more information. Many private labs and hospitals in Costa Rica also offer on-demand PCR coronavirus testing for a fee. These include: Laboratorios Echandi, Hospital La Catolica, Hospital Cima, Laboratorios LABIN, Hospital Clinica Biblica, Laboratorio Paez, Laboratorios San Jose and Hospital Metropolitano.

The majority of private labs and hospitals can guarantee results within 72 hours.

Contact them for more information.

Canadian tourism comprises about 7% of total international arrivals to Costa Rica, according to the Tourism Board.

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