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COVID-19: Preventive measures

We're moving with you

 

The safe way to travel together

Helping you travel has always been at the heart of everything we do. And now that you’re ready to start moving again, we’ll continue to be there for you, keeping you moving in safe, smart, and thoughtful ways, because your peace of mind is on our minds.

The health and safety of our passengers and employees is our top priority. That is why we have made changes to our services and implemented preventive health measures that we will continue to adapt to help curb the pandemic and meet your needs.

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Vaccination Policy

Following the Government of Canada announcement, VIA Rail has suspended the verification of vaccination status for all passengers.

In line with federal directives and recommendations from public health, we remind you that other COVID - 19 protective measures remain in place, including the obligation to wear a mask or face covering aboard all VIA Rail trains and in stations unless when eating or drinking.

Face mask: protecting others

Safety first

VIA Rail still follows the federal mandate requiring that all passengers six and older wear a mask at all times in our stations and on board our trains, except temporarily when eating or drinking. Masks are now mandatory for all employees at all times on trains and in-station. Please note that, for the health and safety of all passengers and employees, boarding will be denied to passengers not wearing a mask, and passengers will be detrained if they refuse to wear a mask during the trip.

Exemptions

Young children under the age of six are exempt from this preventive measure. Also exempt are individuals with a medical condition or disability that makes it difficult to wear a mask, as long as they can provide an official medical certificate along with an identification card (with or without a photo).

View medical certificate requirements

Masks allowed

  • Medical mask
  • Non-medical mask with the following criteria:
  • made with multiple layers of tightly woven material (e.g., cotton or linen);
  • large enough to cover your nose, your mouth and your chin completely, without gaps;
  • secured to the face with ties or ear loops.

Masks not allowed

  • Masks with tears or holes
  • Single-layer masks
  • Plastic masks
  • Masks with exhalation valves
  • Scarves or bandanas
  • Face shields (can only be used in addition to a mask)

Stress-free booking options

Flexible booking

With flexible booking, you can cancel your reservation at any time prior to departure. You’ll receive a full refund and incur zero service charges, regardless of when you purchased your ticket.

See our refund policy for full details.

Seating on Board

Please note that we are not limiting the number of seats available per train. If you are travelling on one of our busier trains, you will very likely be seated next to another passenger.

Service status

Before booking, check the latest and most up-to-date information regarding our current train service.

Check service status

Travelling between regions: Things to know

Certain provincial or municipal travel restrictions may prevail in the regions we serve. We ask that passengers stay informed of public health guidelines and respect those that apply to them and their travel plans. Working together helps us all move forward.

For more information on current provincial guidelines, please consult the Government of Canada’s website.

Contact-free travel

We recommend that you purchase your tickets online. If you must buy your tickets at one of our stations or en route, please note that you will have to pay by regular or prepaid credit card (AMEX, Visa or Mastercard) or with a VIA Rail gift card. Cash is now accepted at staffed stations in the Corridor.

What to expect in our stations and on our trains

Enhanced sanitary measures

For everyone’s health and safety, we have implemented stricter cleaning and disinfection protocols in our stations and on our trains, thorough cleaning of common spaces and hard surfaces, and distribution of hand sanitizers at key points of contact.

The cleaning products we use have been approved by Health Canada and effectively eliminate the COVID-19 virus.

Health checks: What we do

Our employees conduct a health check before passengers are permitted to board our trains. This mainly involves asking simple health questions and looking for visible signs of illness prior to boarding.

If you have cold- or flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing), we ask that you postpone your travel plans and not board the train. If you develop symptoms on board, let one of our employees know immediately. As recommended by Health Canada, our employees have been trained on additional preventive and reactive measures.

 

Passenger checklist

Here’s what you can do to travel safely:

  • Physical distancing: maintain distance of 2 meters from other people.
  • Face masks: required in our stations and on our trains at all times except while eating or drinking.
  • Check your itinerary using our arrivals and departures schedule.
  • Payment: only credit cards (AMEX, Visa or Mastercard) and VIA Rail gift cards accepted. Cash is now accepted at staffed stations in the Corridor.
  • Bring hand sanitizer and wash your hands regularly.
  • Travelling on the Canadian? Learn more about the changes made to our onboard services here.
  • Travelling in Eastern Canada? Learn more about the changes made to our services on board the Ocean.

Have questions?

Visit our FAQ page for the most up to date information and answers to the most commonly asked covid-related questions. This page is updated regularly to address all your concerns.

See all our FAQs

For the latest developments on the situation in Canada and the risk to Canadians, please consult the FAQ section of the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 website.