Planning a visit to Sointula in 2022? With COVID-19 restrictions easing around the world, many families are eager to take what might be their first big vacation since the start of 2020.

Whether it’s your first time traveling to British Columbia or it’s been a long time since your last trip, you likely have plenty of questions. Will you need a visa to travel to Canada from your home country? How should you plan to get from Vancouver Island to Malcolm Island? Do you need a fishing license if you plan to book a visit to one of the many fishing resorts BC has to offer? 

In this travel guide, we’re answering a few common British Columbia travel questions.

Will I Need a Visa to Travel to British Columbia?

Unless you’re traveling to Sointula from within Canada, you’ll need to make sure that you have the right travel documents in order to cross the border. The last thing you want to do is carefully plan out your dream British Columbia vacation, only to find that you don’t have what you need to get into Canada when you arrive at the airport or border.

Whether or not you will need a visa depends on where you’re traveling from.

Traveling to Canada from the U.S.

U.S. citizens do not need a visa to visit Canada. You will need a valid U.S. passport or passport card. If you’ll be flying to Canada, a regular passport book is required. But if you’ll be driving to Canada, you can use a valid passport card instead.

If your passport or passport card is expired, or you don’t have one yet, be sure to apply at least three months before you plan to travel. Current wait times for regular passport processing is between 8 and 12 weeks. While expedited processing is available, it can still take 5 to 7 weeks, and costs extra.

Traveling to Canada from Visa-Exempt Countries

Citizens from many countries are considered visa-exempt and are instead required to submit an Electronic Travel Authorization, or eTA, to travel to Canada by plane instead. This includes citizens of Great Britain, as well as many British territories. You can apply for an eTA on the Government of Canada’s official website. It costs $7 CAD to apply.

Some of the countries from which citizens need to submit an eTA include:

  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Mexico

You can find a full list of visa-exempt travelers, as well as travelers that are required to apply for a visa here.

How Can I Get From Vancouver Island to Malcolm Island?

Getting to Sointula is a part of the adventure! With no roads or bridges connecting Malcolm Island to nearby Vancouver Island, you’ll need to plan to arrive by boat or by seaplane.

A water transfer to Malcolm Island from Vancouver Island takes around 15 minutes. This quick ride is a fun way to kick off your adventure, especially if you’ll be spending time at one of the beautiful fishing resorts BC has to offer during your visit. 

But in order to take advantage of this option, you’ll need to drive or get a taxi or other transportation across Vancouver Island. If you prefer a more direct trip to Sointula, you can opt for a floatplane ride from Vancouver or Seattle instead. Click here to learn more about traveling to Soinula by seaplane, and why you may want to spend a bit more to kick off your trip with this exciting travel option!

Do I Need a Fishing License if I Plan to Visit One of the Many Fishing Resorts BC Has to Offer?

Planning to spend some time at one of the many fishing resorts BC has to offer, including our island’s own beautiful Sointula Lodge? If so, you will need to get a British Columbia fishing license.

If this is your first time visiting a British Columbia fishing lodge, it’s a good idea to check with staff ahead of time to make sure that you are purchasing the correct license and to ask whether you’ll need any special stamps, such as a Salmon Conservation Stamp. British Columbia tidal fishing license for 2022/2023 start at just $105.07 for non-residents of Canada and will ensure that you can fish legally during your visit. 

You can apply for your fishing license online ahead of your trip. If you’re traveling to remote Malcolm Island, this is the easiest way to get your license and will mean one less thing to worry about during your vacation. Don’t forget to print your license ahead of your trip and bring it along with you!

Planning Your Next Visit to Sointula and the Best Fishing Resorts BC Has to Offer

Ready to get away this summer? Beautiful Sointula truly has something for every traveler. Whether you want to cast a line at one of the best fishing resorts BC has to offer, are looking to explore the history of our unique island, or simply want to kick back and relax, you’ll find what you’re looking for here.

While it does take a little extra planning to get to remote Malcolm Island, the quiet tranquility you’ll find here will make it well worth the effort! Have more questions about planning your next visit? Check out our planning resources for everything you need to know about planning the perfect Sointula vacation!