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Point Roberts border traffic not close to pre-pandemic levels

Business leaders continue to put pressure on Canadian government to remove ArriveCan app process along with random testing
Point Roberts border update
The Point Roberts border crossing saw 48 percent fewer car passengers in July compared to the same period in 2019.

Summer cabin season is bringing more people back to Point Roberts, yet still nowhere near pre-pandemic levels.

According to the latest statistics released by the U.S. Department of Transportation, 78,628 personal vehicle passengers visited Point Roberts in July. That’s the highest number since the U.S. re-opened its border for non-essential travel in November nine months ago. However, it’s still a whopping 48 percent less compared to pre-pandemic in July 2019 when 150,624 passengers came into Point Roberts.

The steep decline is being felt at other B.C./Washington State borders too including the busiest of them all at Peace Arch. Last month, 499,097 passengers made their way through the Blaine entry point, compared to 868,366 during the same period three years ago. That’s a 42 percent drop-off.

The Sumas border saw 77,234 passengers come through in July compared to 153,729 in 2019.

Point Roberts Chamber of Commerce president Brian Calder has long been onboard with the campaign for the Canadian government to end the ArriveCan app process that is required to be filled out by everyone when returning to Canada. Random testing is still being carried out as well.

“The ArriveCAN is strangling what little life is left of our economy. It has devastated our tourism – the lifeline of Point Roberts,” said Calder. “It is a deterrent for both US and Canadian services and trades coming to Point Roberts to perform essential work.”

“ArriveCAN does not make sense for Point Roberts. It would be similar to B.C. residents having to complete the ArriveCAN app to travel from Vancouver to Burnaby. Point Roberts shares its only land border with Canada – not the U.S.”

In June, 71,025 visitors came into Point Roberts compared to 134,013 in 2019.