October 18, 2021


MONTRÉAL, October 18, 2021 – VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) is pleased to announce the final phase of its gradual service resumption plan with new frequencies being added beginning in December 2021 and full operations across the country to return by the end of June 2022. As has been done for all VIA Rail services throughout the pandemic, the return to full operation will occur progressively, starting in December 2021 with the return of the second frequency of the Ocean.




December 2021

The Ocean

Resumption of second frequency

April 2022

Québec City-Windsor corridor

Increase of service levels to 85%

Regional routes (*)

Resumption of second frequencies

May 2022

The Canadian

Full service

June 2022

Québec City-Windsor corridor

Full service

The Ocean

Full service

Regional routes (*)

Full service

(*VIA Rail’s Winnipeg-Churchill route will continue to operate its full three frequencies per week as it has since the beginning of the pandemic)

VIA Rail is currently finalizing details, including access to the infrastructure, and will communicate information such as specific resumption dates as soon as it becomes available.

“Our objective has always been the safe resumption of all our services across the country when conditions allowed it, and we are encouraged to be able to proceed to this final phase of our gradual service resumption plan,” said Cynthia Garneau, President and Chief Executive Officer. “We look forward to welcoming our passengers back on board our trains, and I would like to thank all our employees as we continue to weather this storm: their resilience and dedication are what keep us on track.”



VIA Rail’s ridership dropped by more than 95% at the peak of the pandemic and although it is still down from our pre-pandemic levels, we are now seeing a steady demand, which explains the launch of this final phase. As such, VIA Rail will add frequencies while continuing to employ a balanced approach, in order to fulfill its public service mandate and manage financial impacts. Because of the pandemic, many regions have had limited access to transportation and this plan for returning to full service will allow VIA Rail to offer more options.

This final phase of service resumption marks a critical milestone in VIA Rail’s management of the effects of the pandemic on its operations. Throughout this crisis, the health and safety of our passengers and employees have always been our top priority. As such, in the event of major changes related to the pandemic, the Corporation will not hesitate to revise its service offering in line with the latest developments.

VIA Rail continues to deploy strict protocols of sanitary measures on board its trains, in its stations, maintenance centres, call centres and offices to deal with the pandemic and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Teams across the organization also continue to apply the latest health and safety guidelines and are evaluating VIA Rail’s overall service offering in the context of the pandemic.



For questions customers may contact the VIA Customer Centre by email at service@viarail.ca or by phone at 1-888-VIA-RAIL (1-888-842-7245), TTY 1-800-268-9503 (hearing impaired). The VIA Customer Centre is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday to Friday and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Eastern Time) on weekends.



Wearing a mask is required at all times in VIA Rail’s stations and on board VIA Rail trains. For the health and safety of all passengers and employees, passengers who do not wear a mask during their trip will be required to disembark the train or will be refused entry upon boarding.


Wearing a mask over the nose and mouth is one more way to protect one another and will help VIA Rail safeguard the travel experience of its passengers and employees. Throughout the pandemic, when VIA Rail has ramped up service levels in the Québec City-Windsor corridor, enhanced health and safety measures introduced during the pandemic have been maintained, including enhanced cleaning, pre-boarding screening of travellers, modified onboard services.


Furthermore, VIA Rail asks that passengers stay informed of public health guidelines and respect those that apply to them and their travel plans, including mandatory vaccination as of October 30. The Corporation also constantly reminds its passengers and employees of the importance of following recommendations from public health authorities and to rigorously follow good hygiene practices (wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of the arm, avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth without first washing their hands).


Passengers will be denied boarding if they are experiencing symptoms similar to a cold or flu (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) or if they have been denied boarding for travel in the last 14 days due to medical reasons related to COVID-19.


The most recent updates are available on VIA Rail’s website.