qr code ontario

Ontario is about to change up vaccine passport QR code rules and here's how to be ready

For those of us in Ontario who have continued to kick it old school with our proof of vaccination, the window for which we can use anything but the fancy new QR code-equipped vaccine passport is closing up in a matter of days.

Starting Jan. 4, the original vaccination receipt that the Ministry of Health emailed and/or physically gave residents after their COVID-19 shots will no longer be accepted as valid for entry to the many indoor spaces where patrons are required to be double dosed.

Instead, businesses will need to use the Verify Ontario app to scan people's QR codes, which have all of their relevant inoculation information, and check their identification at the door.

Everyone provincewide has been able to download their code through the province's online portal as of Oct. 18, but there are still many who have yet to do so and will need to before Tuesday's deadline.

To download, residents must accept the terms of use on the site, then enter their health card number and back code, birth date and postal code. (Beware that because booking a vaccine uses the same system and demand is high, you may have to wait in an online lineup. The site has also been prone to crashing in the past.).

Next, select the option to download and view the enhanced vaccine certificates for your COVID-19 vaccinations and/or active exemptions, and click "download your enhanced vaccine certificate."

Once you open the document, you can hover your iPhone camera over the code to be prompted to save it to your Apple Wallet via the Health app.

There are also third-party dedicated apps to help save the code to your phone, and ways to save it as a convenient shortcut.

For anyone who has trouble downloading their QR code, the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre (1-833-943-3900) can help get it to you.

Many library systems, such as the Toronto Public Library, are also offering to help people download, print and/or laminate their proof of vaccination free of charge.

Lead photo by

A Great Capture


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