Travellers returning to Canada are reporting delays in bookings and services at the mandatory government-authorized quarantine hotels.
The mandatory quarantine hotel for international air travellers went into effect Feb. 22 to reduce non-essential travel, and to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and its variants.
There are 42 government-authorized quarantine hotels across the four major cities where international flights are allowed to land—Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, and Montreal. The three-night stay at the hotels is mandatory (at the traveller's own expense) until travellers receive a negative COVID-19 test, taken upon their arrival in Canada.
Travellers have taken to Twitter to share their concerns regarding their hotel experience in hopes of getting the government's attention.
The chaos has led people to share their frustration on Twitter calling it a 'boondoggle, 'human rights violation', and 'COVID jail'.
Here's what people have shared about the quarantine hotels, from delays in booking to meals that are lacking:
Travellers have also shared photos of the meals they received during their stay. Complaints include cold and stale food, as well as wrong the dietary food such as chicken being served to vegetarian people.
The government says they have employees and security personnel stationed at the quarantine hotels to support travellers, yet the conditions inside the hotels and prior to arrival are raising questions.
"Canada’s hotel community is actively supporting the Government of Canada’s mandatory quarantine requirements and the Public Health Agency of Canada is in daily contact with hotels to support their needs," said a representative from Health Canada and Public Agency of Canada Media Relations.
In addition, the government says they are working with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, local law enforcement, and third-party security companies screening officers to complete in-person visits.
"Travellers can expect these screening officers to identify themselves, show their company identification, and will ask to speak to the traveller by name, and ask him/her a series of questions related to their quarantine," said a representative from Health Canada and Public Agency of Canada Media Relations.