Canada instituted a mandatory three-night hotel quarantine for all arriving air passengers from last week (read more here) at select hotels (read more here). Simultaneously, some Canadians found out that it was cheaper to skip the hotel quarantine by paying a fine (read more here).
You must make and pay for three nights while waiting for the Covid-19 results from the test administered at the airport. The results come in a day, and if negative, you are free to leave and continue the 14-day quarantine at your residence.
You can access Canada Government’s page for Covid-19 travel restrictions here.
Crowne Plaza Toronto Airport for C$3,458 for a night – excerpt from the CTV News:
“We told the Crowne Plaza the situation and that we needed to book a hotel,” Teixeira said. “The guy said the rate would be $369 per night and you have to book a minimum of three nights.”
Teixeria said they booked a room with two queen beds and waited more than a hour for a shuttle to arrive. When it didn’t arrive, they were eventually told to take a taxi to the hotel.
“When we got there to check-in all of a sudden our price went up from $369 per night to $769 per night plus tax,” she said. “They knew there were three of us. They didn’t give us the right information.”
With all taxes and additional fees included, Teixeira’s credit card was charged $3,458 to stay in the hotel between Feb. 27 and March 1, which is slightly lower than the $3,945 they were quoted when they first arrived at the hotel.
Not long after that, they received their negative COVID-19 test result, which means they can leave the hotel and complete their quarantine period at home. They spent 15 hours at the hotel.
Don’t expect gourmet meals or even utensils! – Excerpt from the CTV News:
Arunthia Urmi, who stayed at a Holiday Inn in Toronto, told CTV News she wasn’t given any utensils with her late dinner and was running out of bottled water.
“I was so hungry. I called so many times,” she said, recalling her attempts to get more water from staff. “They said, ‘we can only give with meals, dinner and lunch, one bottle [each]. Other than that, you drink from the tap.’”
Jordan Evans, who flew in from Arkansas to be with her partner in Montreal, said at her quarantine hotel, she was given extra bottled water after waiting for more than six hours.
“[My supper] was cold. It was not what I ordered and they didn’t put a beverage in there. So I didn’t have a drink,” she told CTV News in a video interview, adding that her breakfast was only two small drinks, a yogurt cup and two pieces of bread.
It is rather crazy that you must pay for three nights for a hotel while waiting for the Covid-19 results that will come in a day, and you are then free to continue the quarantine at your home.
Hotels must love this arrangement, and the number of participating properties has skyrocketed, per the government’s website. You get ridiculous payment per night per guest even if they stay in the same room for three nights, and most will leave in less than a day.
These hotels usually go for $100 per night, and now they charge $300 or so per person per night. This is nothing but price gouging.