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Why I still use ArriveCan

arrivecan logo

The newspapers have been full of coverage relating to ArriveCan lately. If you tuned out, I don't blame you, but let me refresh your memory. ArriveCAN was that mobile app used by travellers to Canada to submit their travel and contact information, as well as their quarantine plans, before entering the country during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Money was allegedly misspent in the development of the app and as a result tax payers didn't exactly get value for money. Allegations include non-competitive bidding for government contracts by a two-person company that did no actual IT work but hired subcontractors all while adding a large commission.

It's a mess.

But here's why I still use ArriveCan.

It sure isn't because I am trying to increase the value for money taxpayers are getting by increasing the use of the app.

I don't use it either because our dear government tells me one of the benefits is that I can "enjoy a more modern travel experience with a digital self-serve tool." (I am not making this up - see the image at the bottom. What is this, advertising from the 50's?)

My reasons are entirely self-serving.

See, contrary to popular belief I do not travel enough to warrant a Nexus card. But by using ArriveCan I found I actually make it through customs and immigration faster than folks who do have such a document. By completing my customs declaration in advance through ArriveCan, I get access to express lanes at Vancouver (YVR), Toronto (Pearson YYZ & Island YTZ), Montréal (YUL), Winnipeg (YWG), Halifax (YHZ), Québec City (YQB), Calgary (YYC), Ottawa (YOW) and Edmonton (YEG) airports.

So next time you fly, be sure you download ArriveCan and complete your customs declaration within 72 hours of arrival in Canada. The app is available from the AppStore and GooglePlay.

the offical reason to use arrivecan


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