Day trips to Detroit are back as travel restrictions are relaxed

Excitement was in the air at the Windsor-Detroit tunnel Tuesday morning as some local residents crossed the border for the first time since the pandemic halted non-essential travel.

Fully vaccinated Canadian travelers who are spending less than 72 hours abroad will no longer need a negative COVID-19 test to return home.

“Finally, it didn’t make any sense in the first place,” one cross-border traveler told CTV News.

“Almost two years so yeah, I got an opportunity to visit my sister,” another said.

No matter what your plans, a trip to the Unites States will now be cheaper and more convenient.

My nephew actually lives in Michigan, my brother lives in Michigan, my nephew is getting married this weekend so my family and I are looking forward to going over,” Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens said.

Across the river, top attractions in Detroit are gearing up for a business boost.

“This is the first time we’ve been able to welcome our few fan base back in a long time,” said Spencer Ambrosius, Red Wings vice president of ticket sales and service.

The Red Wings are already feeling the presence of its Canadian fan base.

“Tomorrow night against the Seattle Kraken, it’s pacing towards a sell out and I think a lot of that there’s some hype around our Canadians fans,” Ambrosius said.

Over at the Michigan Opera Theatre, they’re singing at the top of their lungs.

“We welcome and look forward to our seeing our Canadian friends soon and often,” said Michigan Opera Theatre president Wayne S. Brown.

The PCR testing exemption couldn’t come at a more unfavourable time. Canada and countries around the world are implementing sweeping travel restrictions in wake of the new omicron variant.

“I think we are going to have to figure out how to live with COVID for many years to come there will be many variants,” Dilkens said.

Federal officials are discussion potential tighter travel restrictions, leaving border communities on edge.

“Closing the border I don’t think the solution,” Dilkens said. “We still have to let people live their life.”