Foreign travel advice


COVID-19 Exceptional Travel Advisory Notice

As countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including travel and border restrictions, the FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Any country or area may restrict travel without notice. If you live in the UK and are currently travelling abroad, you are strongly advised to return now, where and while there are still commercial routes available. Many airlines are suspending flights and many airports are closing, preventing flights from leaving.

Return to the UK

There remain commercial options to return to the UK from Canada.

If you live in the UK and are currently visiting Canada, you are strongly advised to return now by commercial means. Don’t run the risk of getting stranded.

UK special charter flights will only operate for priority countries where commercial flights are not possible. You should not assume that these flights will become available in countries where commercial routes are operating. Please do not contact the contracted travel management company if no flight is advertised here.

International flights

Only the following airports are operating international flights:

  • Toronto Pearson (YYZ)
  • Montreal Pierre Elliott Trudeau (YUL)
  • Calgary International Airport (YYC)
  • Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

Whilst other airlines have either suspended all international flights or are no longer flying to the UK, Air Canada is continuing flights to London, at a reduced schedule, for the month of April. These are the current details for 1-30 April (subject to change):

  • Toronto-London: 7 flights per week
  • Montreal-London: 2 flights per week
  • Vancouver-London: 3 flights per week

Transit via Canada

If you’re planning to transit via Canada to reach the UK, you should be aware that exceptions apply. A person “in transit” means that they:

  • arrive and depart from the same airport within a reasonable time frame (the Canadian authorities advise this means as short as possible, and certainly less than 24 hours)
  • remain on the air side or sterile area of the airport
  • do not have to go through Customs and formally enter Canada and pick up their bags so they can take their next flight
  • do not move between terminals at an airport, unless they can do so without going through Customs and formally entering Canada
  • do not take a domestic flight to get to another airport so they can catch their next international flight

You should also check Transport Canada’s guidance.

Toronto Pearson Airport is currently not allowing overnight transit.

The Canadian authorities require visitors transiting through Canada to obtain an Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA) see Entry requirements, unless you are otherwise exempted (for example, if you have a valid Canadian visa or a permanent resident card).

If you have any further questions, you should contact your airline, Transport Canada, or your nearest Canadian High Commission, Embassy or Consulate.

Further information

The situation is liable to change with little or no notice. Sign up for travel advice email alerts and follow the British High Commission on Twitter and Facebook.

For the most up to date information on specific options for returning to the UK, you should contact airlines directly For flight status information, check airline websites or call :

Due to the high volume of calls, airlines are experiencing longer than normal wait times.

See additional advice on making travel plans to return to the UK, or what to do if you cannot depart immediately.