Travelling into Canada with a narcotic or controlled drug

If you want to travel to Canada with a medication that contains a narcotic or controlled drug, you must meet certain terms and conditions. These are outlined in the exemption under section 56 of the Act.

Section 56 class exemption

Summary of terms and conditions

You can bring whichever amount of medication is less:

  • a single course of treatment of a narcotic or controlled drug, or
  • a 30-day supply of a narcotic or controlled drug, based on the usual daily dose


The medication must be:

  • labelled
  • prescribed by a practitioner, such as a:
    • doctor
    • dentist
    • nurse practitioner
  • packaged in pharmacy or hospital packaging


The medication must be for you or for a person you are responsible for who is travelling with you. It cannot be for an animal.

You must declare the medication to customs when you arrive in Canada.

The requirements are the same if you are entering or leaving Canada.

You cannot send products containing a narcotic or controlled drug into Canada by mail.

If your stay in Canada is longer than 30 days, you will need to see a physician in Canada to get a prescription.

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