SAM Magazine—Terrebonne, Que., Nov. 2, 2021—The Quebec government will require proof of vaccination (a vaccine passport) for people age 13 and older to use ski lifts and access certain services offered in day lodges at the province’s ski areas this winter, according to the Quebec Ski Areas Association (ASSQ).The mandate takes effect Nov. 15, but any ski areas that open before then will implement the requirement.
“We welcome the news to be able to operate ski lifts at full capacity as well as having no limit to the number of visitors outside,” said ASSQ CEO Yves Juneau. “For the ski industry, the implementation of the vaccine passport is certainly an operational challenge, but it will allow for the easing of other health measures, and for that we are thankful. Our guest surveys show that the vast majority of skiers are in favor of the vaccine passport. The big impact for visitors will be the peace of mind that comes with this measure.”
According to ASSQ, ski areas are already at work to implement passport validation procedures and will be able to inform passholders and day ticket purchasers of the process in the coming days. It will be up to individual ski areas to define the best ways to validate the proof of vaccination.
The requirement will allow for all services to be back in full operation for the 2021-22 season, namely food and beverage services, retail, ski school, children's daycare, ski clubs, lockers, and equipment rental.
Quebec ski areas will have to fully comply with the province’s public health recommendations, and will enforce public health measures. The basic guidelines applicable this winter when visiting a ski area, as outlined by ASSQ, include:
- People with Covid symptoms will be asked to stay home;
- Vaccine passport is required for the use of ski lifts and access to day lodge services (restaurants, cafeterias, bars, lunch sections), and restaurant rules will apply inside buildings with F&B service (10 people max per table, tables 1 m apart when no partition is in place);
- For lift lines and ski lifts, it is recommended to wear a neck warmer or balaclava covering the nose and mouth outdoors for all visitors aged 3 and over, including during a ski lesson;
- Wearing a face covering indoors and in enclosed carriers such as gondolas;
- Physical distancing is required;
- Frequent hand washing.