After months of isolation from the outside world, Newfoundland and Labrador is slowly reopening its doors to travellers.
The office of Premier Andrew Furey said Tuesday that as of June 23, visitors from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island can enter the province without any testing or self-isolation requirements.
In a media release, the premier's office cited high vaccination and low COVID-19 infection rates across the Atlantic region as reasons for its decision.
Nova Scotia simultaneously announced its plan to lift restrictions for Atlantic Canada residents on June 23. Prince Edward Island will do the same on June 27, with the caveat that incoming Atlantic Canadians must have had at least one dose of vaccine.
Newfoundland and Labrador is aiming to open to travellers from the rest of Canada on July 1. People with two doses of vaccine don't have to self-isolate, while visitors with one dose have to present or take a rapid COVID-19 test before leaving isolation. People with no vaccine may enter the province, but must self-isolate for 14 days.
However, the province has said it's aiming to hit a 75 per cent immunization rate before the chief medical officer of health will lift the travel ban, with low case counts and hospitalizations.
As of Sunday, more than 71 per cent of the eligible population had rolled up their sleeves for their first jab.
Two new cases of COVID-19
Also on Tuesday, Newfoundland and Labrador reported two new cases of COVID-19.
The first case, reported in the Labrador-Grenfell Health region — the area's first new case since May 12 — is a man between 20 and 39 years old. The Health Department of Health says the case is related to travel within Canada.
The second case is a woman in her 60s in the Western Health region, a contact of a previous case and connected to a cluster in the area. There are now 42 cases in western Newfoundland connected to the cluster.
With no new recoveries reported, the province's active caseload rises to 41. No one is hospitalized due to the virus.
To date, 155,062 people have been tested, including 402 since Monday's update.
The Health Department said it's still investigating the clusters in central and western Newfoundland.