Minister of Transport clears Santa Claus for travel in Canadian airspace

News release

December 23, 2021                       Ottawa                             Transport Canada

The Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, is happy to announce that he has cleared Santa for travel in Canadian airspace.

On a virtual call earlier this week, Santa notified Minister Alghabra that he completed his pre-flight checklist—and even checked it twice.  

Making sure he didn’t wait ‘til the night before Christmas to prepare for his journey, Santa had his proof of vaccination ready and made sure that his COVID-19 test was negative before take off.

As for the flight crew, Santa’s reindeer were also cleared for travel. Although his nose shone red and bright, Rudolph made sure he had no COVID-19 symptoms before taking off on this important mission.

Earlier this month, Transport Canada inspected Santa’s sleigh and its safety systems. The inspectors checked the landing gear and the reindeer harnesses, as well as the communications and navigation systems. Not to be overlooked, Santa’s gift bag full of presents was also checked to ensure it is secure and ready to deliver presents to Canadians from coast-to-coast-to-coast.

Your celebrations may look a little different this year, especially as you focus on protecting those around you and avoiding non-essential travel. By doing your part to keep others safe, including getting vaccinated, wearing a mask, and staying six feet apart from others (or as Santa would say, at least a dozen or so candy canes apart), you’ll find yourself atop the Nice List this year.

Merry Christmas!

Additional multimedia

Minister Alghabra clears Santa for travel in Canadian airspace (Transcript)


“This year, I’m delighted to clear Santa and his crew for travel in Canadian skies. When I spoke to Santa, he assured me that he met all the pre-entry requirements to re-enter Canada and that he was committed to ensuring his safety, the safety of Canadians, and our transportation workers. I’d like wish everyone a safe, happy, and festive holiday season. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!”

The Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport

Quick facts

  • You can track Santa and his reindeer on the NORAD Tracks Santa website and on Twitter following the #NoradTracksSanta hashtag.

  • When preparing for their trip, Santa and his reindeer used this tool to ensure they meet all the requirements to re-enter Canada, including qualifying as fully vaccinated travellers.

  • Before taking off, Santa and his reindeer made sure to download and submit all required documentation through the ArriveCAN application.

Associated links


Allison St-Jean
Senior Communications Advisor and Press Secretary

Office of the Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport, Ottawa

Media Relations
Transport Canada, Ottawa

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