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Because I live only an hour from the border in Vancouver, I was able to take my PCR test in Canada, travel to the United States for a few hours and come back using the test alone.

With my list of requirements ready, I booked my appointment for the PCR test at the Ace Travel Covid testing clinic. The test totaled $ 295, which is a steep cost just to cross the border.

It was my very first PCR test, and when they say they go deep there, they mean deep.

It wasn’t the most comfortable experience, but it was over in seconds. I also got my test results the same day which was perfect as I was traveling the next day.

Side note: Does everyone agree that there is no better feeling than getting a negative COVID-19 test? Even though I wasn’t symptomatic, it’s so heartwarming.

The next step was to download the ArriveCan app. You need to scan your passport on the app, enter your information, enter the time and location of your border crossing, and answer a few questions about your quarantine situation if you had to.


It only took a few minutes, but they didn’t even check this app when I got to the border, so I’m not quite sure what the point is.

So with my passport in hand, my app downloaded, my negative test results on my phone, and my proof of vaccination ready to go, I was finally ready to hit the road.


The trip was quick and easy, and I felt dizzy as I finally left the country.


I stopped at the border and saw the iconic Peace Arch and to my surprise, no queue! I went there in the middle of the day on a Wednesday which probably improved the traffic situation.


To enter the United States, all you need is your passport and proof of vaccination, which made the call to the agent less stressful.


I waited a total of five minutes, and the border officer waved me through after asking a few questions – including why the hell I was driving to go and relax in the United States for a few hours on my own.

Getting to the US was a breeze overall, and I got to tour the border town of Blaine, Washington on a beautiful day.


The city seemed very excited to find tourism again and many locals said I was one of their first Canadian customers.


After a bite to eat, strolling the beach, and stocking up on snacks, I was ready to cross the border.

On the way back to Canada, I had to collect my ArriveCAN application and proof of a negative PCR test, as well as my passport and proof of vaccination.

Fortunately, the queue was short on the return to the country too.


The border officer checked my test results and their timestamps, so make sure you have them ready.

Since the PCR test is so expensive, it is possible that this requirement will change, so be sure to stay aware of travel restrictions on government site.

Overall, the return to Canada was also easy! I showed my documents and was able to get back to British Columbia in less than ten minutes.


A little spontaneously, I then decided to pick up my boyfriend and return to the United States for a night on a mini vacation.

As my PCR test lasted 72 hours, I thought I would get the most out of it.

Unfortunately, my second trip to the United States didn’t go so well, so be prepared for any surprises.

Before you go, check out our Responsible Travel Guide to be informed, be safe, be smart and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.

About Derrick Hill

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