Guidelines for the Operation of Passenger Vessels in Canadian Arctic Waters - TP 13670 E


Table of Contents



These Guidelines are intended to provide information on the requirements of Federal and Territorial government agencies during the planning phase of cruises and during the subsequent Arctic voyages. Information is also included that has been provided by several non-governmental organizations.

These Guidelines are published by the Marine section of the Prairie and Northern Region of Transport Canada. This organization is tasked with the administration of regulations governing shipping within the boundaries of the Region, in particular those concerned with Arctic shipping. Much of the information contained in the Guidelines has been obtained from other organizations concerned with shipping and tourism in the North. Transport Canada cannot take responsibility for data originating outside the department.

The scope of these requirements includes the necessity for cruise operators to pay particular attention to the aboriginal land claim agreements that apply over a vast area in the Canadian Arctic. Apart from land claims, there are private properties adjacent to the Arctic coast whose owners must grant permission in advance of a cruise ship’s intention to visit them.

Most communities around the Territories welcome visits by cruise ships provided sufficient advance notice has been given.

The Guidelines are intended to assist cruise operators in achieving successful voyages and promoting good relations with all the cultures of the North.

The reader should note that this publication is not a legal document. Specific regulations and standards should be consulted to determine legal interpretations and requirements. The focus of these Guidelines is the safe and pollution-free operation of cruise ships in Canadian Arctic waters.

Arctic Cruise Ship "Bremen"
(formerly “Frontier Spirit”)

Executive Summary

These Guidelines provide the Arctic cruise ship operator with information on the appropriate Canadian government agencies to be contacted for approvals and advice. Increasing passenger operations in Canadian Arctic waters have made it necessary for operators to be thoroughly familiar with all the Government regulations concerning:

  • pollution prevention;
  • ship safety;
  • national security;
  • vessel traffic management;
  • ice navigation and ice regimes;
  • tourism affecting Arctic communities;
  • search and rescue;
  • Arctic marine survival

The reference section lists the agencies involved. The reader is directed to the appropriate agency by reference numbers in the text. Other documents and regulations are cited in the Guidelines. Some of these publications are required to be on board vessels. Others provide useful reference information to the operator or organizer.

Arctic Cruise Ship "Akademik loffe"

Record of Amendments

Amendments Amendments Made By Date of Entry
Number Date

1. Introduction

There are several Canadian authorities involved in the cruise operations of Arctic passenger vessels, namely, the Federal Government, the Government of the Northwest Territories (Yellowknife), Government of Nunavut (Iqaluit) and the Government of Yukon (Whitehorse). The Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Québec both extend into the Arctic area, but information on those areas is not within the scope of this publication. Provided the cruise operator knows whom to contact regarding the various Canadian regulations in force, cruise planning and all aspects of the voyage can be accomplished to the satisfaction of all concerned.

The objective of these Guidelines is to assist cruise operators, and their agents, in the planning of Arctic cruises and in making contact with all relevant Canadian government authorities well in advance to ensure that all the required publications are on board the ships and have been studied before entering Canadian Arctic waters and that the operation complies with all applicable regulations.

Navigation in Arctic ice for an ice-strengthened passenger ship requires specialized skill and is very different from open water cruising. Crews must be well prepared for any eventuality affecting the safety of ships and passengers. There are no drydocks or suitable repair facilities in the Canadian Arctic. Non-satellite radio communications can be seriously affected by atmospheric and magnetic disturbances. Mountainous coastlines, especially in the Eastern Arctic and north of about 750 North latitude, may restrict satellite communications by blocking the low angles of sight necessary at high latitudes. Transport Canada and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans/Canadian Coast Guard and other agencies provide a number of services to assist the Arctic mariner and these are highlighted in the text. An Arctic cruise is a fascinating experience provided due precautions have been taken beforehand.

The organizational titles for all agencies cited in these Guidelines, their postal and Internet addresses, as well as telephone and facsimile numbers are listed in the reference section at the end of the Guidelines. The text gives appropriate references to contacts in the various administrations. Numbers in brackets in the text refer to contact addresses in the Appendix.

Consolidated federal government regulations applicable to cruise ships in Canadian Arctic waters can be obtained as a package from Transport Canada, Prairie and Northern Region – Marine (1). All legislation and regulations administered by Transport Canada are also available to the public on the Department’s website (see appendix for address). It is strongly recommended that cruise operators and shipowners obtain and study all applicable regulations early in the planning process.

The reader should note that all organizations change over time. While Transport Canada intends to update these Guidelines periodically, some of the contact information in the Appendix may become obsolete before revisions take place. Comments, corrections and suggestions for improving the Guidelines should be sent to the address on page ii.

2. Instructional Overview

In order to simplify the process of planning cruise vessel operations in the North, it is recommended that the organizer strategically plan the contacting of the relevant governmental bodies.

An order of action that would be effective is:

  1. Transport Canada, Prairie and Northern Region - Marine (1,2) should be the first contact made. This office will know all the up-to-date information relating to marine regulations applicable to ships operating in the region and is responsible for all vessel approval. The organizer should have a general vessel itinerary that determines whether it falls within legal entry limits for the various Shipping Safety Control Zones (see table 2 and Figure 1 in the Appendix).
  2. The Canadian Coast Guard, Central & Arctic Region (15) should be provided with an itinerary early in the planning process. The Coast Guard will use this information in combination with other submissions in the spring to plan the deployment of their icebreaking resources for the upcoming season.
  3. Once contact has been made with Marine Safety and the Canadian Coast Guard, Customs and Immigration regulations need to be dealt with (29,30,31,13,14). The cruise organizer or shipowner is responsible for contacting the authorities for these matters. The issuing of a coasting trade licence is necessary for ships carrying passengers from one port to another in Canada. Canadian Border Services co-ordinates this activity with Transport Canada. Organizers are also requested to provide details of their planned itineraries to the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (26).
  4. After obtaining approval and arranging matters with the Canadian Border Services Agency and Citizenship and Immigration Canada, Transport Canada Security (3) should be contacted to discuss security matters relating to the Marine Transportation Security Act.
  5. Specific navigational equipment and publications are required by regulation to be on board vessels when in Arctic waters are available from the Canadian Hydrographic Service (21). These include charts, publications and instruments that are vital to navigation in the area. The regulations need to be carefully consulted to determine the specific requirements.
  6. Before the voyage begins, NORDREG (the Arctic Canada Vessel Traffic System) should be contacted (16,17), as well as Environment Canada (24) for ice information to be used by the navigators on board the ship. NORDREG will be able to provide the latest status of radio communications systems in the Canadian Arctic.
  7. Security regulations require that all vessels must contact a Coast Guard Marine Communications and Traffic Services Centre ( MCTS ) at least 96 hours prior to entering Canadian waters (3). Vessels entering the eastern Canadian Arctic should contact the Iqaluit MCTS (call sign VFF) (18a), and those entering from the west should contact the Inuvik MCTS (call sign VFA) (18b).
  8. The cruise organizer/shipowner is responsible for contacting the appropriate Territorial agencies (36-46).

Other agencies will also have to be contacted:

  • the Canadian Armed Forces, and respective Territorial RCMP detachments request the itinerary of the vessel to be sent to them in advance (4,10,11,12);
  • a tourism establishment licence and exporting permits will have to be obtained if any shore excursions or exporting of any product is expected (40);
  • arrangements will have to be made for entrance into National or Territorial Parks, Heritage and Archaeological sites, and Wildlife Sanctuaries. Also permits and licences will need to be obtained (28, 43, 38).

3. Shipping Regulations and Vessel Approval

Transport Canada works closely with the Canadian Coast Guard. The duties of these two organizations are divided into the following areas of responsibility:

Transport Canada

  • Approval under the Arctic Shipping Pollution Prevention Regulations ( ASPPR ) of the specifications, schedules, and itineraries of vessels;
  • Regulatory development and administration;
  • Arctic Ice Regime Shipping System ( AIRSS );
  • Navigating equipment requirements;
  • Marine safety;
  • Pollution prevention;
  • Ballast water exchange;
  • Security;
  • Port State Control.

Canadian Coast Guard (Department of Fisheries and Oceans)

  • Icebreaker escort;
  • Search and rescue in conjunction with the Canadian Armed Forces;
  • NORDREG vessel traffic management and position reporting and other communications;
  • Pollution incident response;
  • Marine Communications and Traffic Services ( MCTS ) Centres provide continuous monitoring of the international maritime distress and urgency radio frequencies. A continuous watch on the International safety Digital Selective Calling high frequencies ( HF/DSC ) is also provided as part of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System ( GMDSS );
  • Fax and e-mail services.

4. Transport Canada

4.1 Marine Safety and Pollution Prevention

The Arctic Shipping Pollution Prevention Regulations ( ASPPR ) are administered by Transport Canada. No ship may enter a Shipping Safety Control Zone unless it is in compliance with all applicable requirements of ASPPR . Figure 1 (page 29) shows the extent of the zones in which the regulations apply. table 1 (page 30) gives the Classification Society equivalent notations to the ASPPR ship types. Earliest entry and latest exit dates are established for each zone depending on the class or type of the particular vessel. These dates are given in table 2 (page 31). The regulations specifically prohibit the deposit in Arctic waters of any kind of waste - defined broadly as anything that will degrade the Arctic marine environment. There are no facilities for the disposal of oily slops in the Arctic, and sites for garbage disposal are infrequent. Slops and other garbage should be retained on board for final disposal at an appropriately equipped port.

Vessels may be inspected for compliance with ASPPR outside of Canada by an exclusive surveyor of one of the approved Classification Societies shown in table 1. Within Canada, this function must be performed by a Pollution Prevention Officer ( PPO ) and is available from any Transport Canada Marine Safety Office in Canada. Evidence of the successful inspection may be provided in the form of an Arctic Pollution Prevention Certificate.

Generally, foreign flag vessels will have been approved by their Classification Society and an Arctic Pollution Prevention Certificate issued before entering the Arctic Zones. If a Port State Control ( PSC ) inspection has not been carried out within six months of arriving in Canada, or if significant defects have been reported, a PSC inspection may have to be arranged at the vessel’s first Canadian port of call.

All Marine Safety Inspectors are also designated Pollution Prevention Officers as are the Commanding Officers and Chief Engineers of Canadian Coast Guard icebreakers. In the event of an oil or other type of spill they are empowered to conduct an on site investigation.

The ASPPR is a wide reaching document and cruise operators should be conversant with its content. Certain requirements of ASPPR are discussed below.

The operator must first establish that the ship complies with all applicable regulations. In order that Transport Canada may verify compliance, the following information is required for each ship and should be forwarded to the Manager, TCC Edmonton, Transport Canada, Prairie and Northern Region – Marine (2):

  • Name of ship;
  • Number and Call Sign;
  • Port of Registry;
  • Flag;
  • Dimensions (length, breadth, and depth); gross and net tonnage; maximum draft forward and aft;
  • Classification Society;
  • Number of propeller shafts and the total power in kW ;
  • Ice Classification (assigned by the Classification Society);
  • Proposed itinerary including points of embarkation and disembarkation of passengers and dates;
  • Number of passengers and crew;
  • Owner;
  • Agent and/or cruise organizer (name, address, telephone and facsimile numbers, e-mail, etc. )

In addition, copies of the following certificates and documents should also be provided:

  • International Tonnage Certificate;
  • Passenger Ship Safety Certificate;
  • Exemption Certificates (if issued);
  • International Oil Pollution Prevention Certificate;
  • International Load Line Certificate;
  • Minimum Safe Manning Document;
  • International Ship Security Certificate;
  • Document of Compliance and Safety Management Certificate ( ISM Code );
  • Most recent report of Port State Control inspection;
  • Certificate of Indemnity/Insurance against pollution clean-up;
  • Arctic Waters Pollution Prevention Certificate;
  • Ice navigator qualifications, if required (see section 4.6).

The vessel will have to be cleared for proper Zone and Arctic Type approval. Transport Canada, Prairie and Northern Region - Marine (1) administers the regulations under which this process is carried out. If the operator wishes to have a vessel certificated as equivalent to an Arctic Class or a Canadian Arctic Category rather than a Type ship (as defined in the regulations), all relevant information and specifications should be submitted to the Transport Canada Marine Safety Office in Winnipeg (1) at least 6 months in advance.

4.2 Security

Transport Canada is the lead federal department responsible for the security of the Canadian marine transportation system. The department works in collaboration with several other departments and agencies which play a significant role:

  • Department of National Defence
  • Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada
    • Canada Border Services Agency
    • Canadian Security Intelligence Service
    • Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • Canadian Coast Guard

The Government of Canada has recently enacted new regulations governing marine security that apply to passenger ships operating in Canadian Arctic waters. The Marine Transportation Security Regulations ( MTSR ) apply to all ships, whether Canadian or foreign registered, SOLAS or non- SOLAS . Different sections of the regulations apply to different vessels.

The Canadian regulations are based on the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code ( ISPS ), which provides a framework through which ships and port facilities can cooperate to detect and deter acts which pose a threat to maritime security. A copy of the code can be found on the International Maritime Organization website at

There are some differences between the ISPS Code and the MTSR . For example, the Canadian regulations include special provisions for cruise ships having capacity for 100 or more passengers. The additional regulations specifically prohibit the carriage of weapons, explosives or incendiaries on board a cruise ship, and all passengers and crew must be screened by the ship operator to ensure compliance. Exemptions may be granted for firearms intended for use in protecting passengers against polar bear attacks during shore excursions, by contacting the appropriate RCMP office in writing (see Section 11.4 for further information).

The MTSR include a requirement for all ships to report certain detailed information to a Canadian Marine Communications and Traffic Services ( MCTS ) Centre at least 96 hours prior to arriving in Canadian waters (see Section 5.2 below). The ship must be in possession of a valid Canadian or International Ship Security Certificate ( ISSC ), and the certificate number must be provided at that time.

Transport Canada may conduct a formal security inspection on arrival at a Canadian port. There is currently no cost to the operator for such inspections.

At the present time there are only two port facilities in Canadian Arctic waters that are ISPS compliant (Tuktoyaktuk and Churchill). However, they are not specifically designed for cruise ships. During the course of a cruise in Arctic waters, at these ports and wherever passengers are tendered ashore using ship’s boats, it is the responsibility of the ship operator to ensure appropriate security screening of passengers and crew.

It is the responsibility of the cruise operator and/or ship owner/manager to arrange proper security measures for the vessel. Operators should contact Transport Canada Security in Ottawa (3) with details of their planned activities for further information on specific requirements.

4.3 Fuel and Water

The ASPPR requires all vessels operating in the Zones to have sufficient fuel and water on board to complete their intended voyages and to leave all Zones. A vessel’s capability of making its own fresh water will be taken into account in this regard. There are no refuelling or watering facilities in the Arctic unless the cruise operator makes special arrangements during the planning phase. Transport Canada will require an estimate of fuel consumption anticipated for the full voyage and NORDREG will need to be informed of the volume of fuel on board prior to the vessel entering the first Zone.

4.4 Searchlights

It is recommended that ships be equipped with powerful Zenon searchlights positioned above the bridge and operated from the bridge. Although most Arctic cruising takes place when ice conditions are lightest, and there is little or no darkness, there is always considerable risk involved when ice is encountered in twilight or darkness. When this happens, searchlights can be useful in extricating a vessel from an area of risk and moving to a safer position.

Night navigation in ice concentrations is not recommended. It is usually safer to stop the vessel in the ice and await first light.

The requirements for vessels navigating north of 60° North latitude are contained in the Navigating Appliances and Equipment Regulations. In brief the following are required:

  • 2 radars;
  • 2 Gyro compasses;
  • 2 echo sounders, each with an independent transducer.

4.6 Ship Itinerary and Zone/Dates

The ship’s itinerary is to be compared to the Shipping Safety Control Zone/Date grid (table 2) to determine compliance and whether the Arctic Ice Regime Shipping System ( AIRSS ) needs to be invoked. Should AIRSS be invoked, there are several implications including the carriage of a qualified Ice Navigator.

Very few cruise vessels have a higher classification than ASPPR Type “A.” These Type ships are ice-strengthened vessels, not icebreakers. Depending on their classification, Type ships may be able to navigate safely in certain concentrations and thickness of broken pack ice. Operators should refer to the publication “Ice Navigation in Canadian Waters” for more information (see Section 12.4). It should be noted, however, that these guidelines are only a generalization and no guarantee can be made of voyage success regardless of the ice conditions extant or of vessel ice classification.

4.7 Ice Navigator

An Ice Navigator is required to be on board ships navigating in Canadian Arctic waters in the circumstances noted in the following extract from the Arctic Shipping Pollution Prevention Regulations:

26.   (2) No ship [ . ] shall navigate in any zone set out in the heading to each of Columns II to XVII of [table 2]
(a) where the words “No Entry” are shown in that column of item 14, and
(b) where a period of time is shown in that Column of item 14, except during that period of time without the aid of an ice navigator who is qualified in accordance with subsection (3).
(3) The ice navigator on a ship shall
(a) be qualified to act as master or person in charge of the deck watch in accordance with regulations made pursuant to the Canada Shipping Act; and
(b) have served on a ship in the capacity of master, or person in charge of the deck watch for a total period of at least 50 days, of which 30 days must have been served in Arctic waters while the ship was in ice conditions that required the ship to be assisted by an icebreaker or to make manoeuvres to avoid concentrations of ice that might have endangered the ship.
(4) Despite subsection [.] (2), a [.] ship referred to in [ that subsection ] may navigate in a zone without the aid of an ice navigator during any part of the transit in open water.
(5) For the purposes of subsection (4), “open water” has the meaning assigned to that term in the Arctic Ice Regime Shipping System ( AIRSS TP , published by Marine Safety, Transport Canada, in June 1996, as amended from time to time.

If a vessel invokes the Arctic Ice Regime Shipping system in order to navigate in a zone outside the zone/date limits, in accordance with subsection 2(b) above, an Ice Navigator will have to be on board.

There are many Ice Navigators in Canada with years of experience in ice navigation. Whether legally required or not, it would be prudent for a cruise operator to engage one of these experts, many of whom are Master Mariners, to assist the cruise vessel’s master, particularly with shore communications and arranging icebreaker escorts.

4.8 Ballast Water Exchange

As part of its ongoing attempts to keep foreign species out of Canada’s marine ecosystem, the Canadian government has established voluntary ballast water exchange guidelines. Ballast water exchange should preferably be effected in mid-ocean as far from land as possible in water depths greater than 2 km . However, when this is not possible, alternative sites have been designated for the Arctic waters of Canada as follows:

  1. For vessels proceeding to Hudson Bay ports - in Hudson Strait in depths exceeding 300 metres restricted to the areas southeast of 70° west longitude.
  2. For vessels proceeding to Higher Arctic ports – in Lancaster Sound in depths exceeding 300 metres restricted to the area southeast of 80° west longitude.

Department of Fisheries and Oceans / Canadian Coast Guard


NORDREG is the Arctic marine traffic system. Cruise ship operators and masters are encouraged to use the system as it is invaluable to their day to day Arctic operations. NORDREG is operated by Marine Communications and Traffic Services ( MCTS ) personnel. The MCTS Centres forward messages and are in continuous contact with NORDREG . The NORDREG system keeps track of all traffic north of 60° North, as well as within Ungava Bay and the southern part of Hudson Bay. This makes the service vital for search and rescue. The system is free of charge. Cruise ships requiring icebreaker assistance should contact NORDREG . Recommended routes and general ice conditions are also provided. Full information on NORDREG can be found in Canadian Annual Edition of Notices to Mariners. All accidents and incidents of marine pollution must be immediately reported to NORDREG . NORDREG operations are based in Iqaluit, Nunavut during the normal navigation season, but services are maintained from St. John’s, Newfoundland in the off-season.

5.2 Marine Communications and Traffic Services ( MCTS )

Marine Communications and Traffic Services ( MCTS ) is a core Canadian Coast Guard ( CCG ) program providing services in support of marine safety, security, environmental protection and efficient marine transportation. Service covering Canadian Arctic waters is provided through three MCTS Centres located at Thunder Bay (Churchill), Iqaluit and Inuvik (18,19). Current service lines provided by MCTS are the continuous monitoring of International Distress and Urgency mobile maritime frequencies; weather, ice and Notices to Shipping broadcast and information; ice and weather charts facsimile broadcast; communications related to pollution reporting; Marine Safety Advisory Service on the Mackenzie River and the provision of public correspondence communications.

The Canadian Marine Transportation Security Regulations require that all ships must report certain detailed information to a MCTS Centre at least 96 hours prior to arriving in Canadian waters (see Section 4.2 above).

5.3 Icebreakers and Icebreaker Escort

The Canadian Coast Guard has a number of heavy and light icebreakers available for Arctic operations. Between July and October many of these vessels are deployed in the Arctic. Priority is given to the escort and support of commercial (cargo) shipping. Cruise vessels encountering difficult ice conditions can request icebreaker assistance, but it may not be available at short notice. Operators should be aware that vessels not participating in NORDREG will receive lower priority in requesting icebreaker assistance than those vessels making daily position reports. Currently, there is no charge for icebreaker assistance in the Canadian Arctic.

5.4 Search and Rescue and Medical

The Canadian Forces ( CF ) have overall responsibility for co-ordination of Search and Rescue ( SAR ) activities in Canada, including Arctic waters and the high seas off the coasts of Canada, and for the provision of dedicated SAR aircraft in support to marine SAR incidents. The Canadian Coast Guard ( CCG ) co-ordinates marine SAR activities within this zone, in co-operation with CF , and provides dedicated marine SAR vessels in strategic locations. All Canadian Government ships are available for search and rescue duties when required. Any MCTS Centre is to be advised of any incident requiring assistance.

Rescue Co-ordination Centres ( RCC ) are maintained at Victoria, British Columbia, Trenton, Ontario and Halifax, Nova Scotia (5,6,7). These centres are staffed 24 hours a day by Canadian Forces and Canadian Coast Guard personnel. In addition, Marine Rescue Sub-Centres ( MRSC ), staffed by Coast Guard personnel are maintained at St. John's, Newfoundland and at Québec City, Québec (9,8) to co-ordinate local marine SAR operations.

Additional information on Search and Rescue Services in Canadian waters can be found in the following publications, available from the Canadian Hydrographic Service (21):

  • Sailing Directions Arctic Canada Vol. 1 Fourth Edition Chapter 1;
  • Canadian Annual Edition of Notices to Mariners Section D.

5.5 Oceans Strategy

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans has developed an integrated Oceans Strategy for Canada (Canada's Oceans Strategy). The strategy is built on the three principles of sustainable development, integrated management, and the precautionary approach.

The strategy will identify areas of interest for special protection including areas specified by the Oceans Act, Marine Conservation Areas and Marine Wildlife Sanctuaries. Operators should contact Department of Fisheries and Oceans in Winnipeg (22) with details of their planned activities for further information on specific requirements.

5.6 Oil Spills

Any incident involving the spillage of oil or petroleum lubricating products into the marine environment must be reported immediately to NORDREG . In addition, the operator should report the incident to the 24-hour Spill Report Centre at the following numbers:

Nunavut and Northwest Territories: (867) 920-8130
Yukon: (867) 667-7444

6. Canada Border Services Agency

6.1 Coasting Trade Licence

It is the responsibility of the cruise organizer/shipowner to ascertain whether or not the intended voyage is considered to be a coasting voyage. Reference should be made to the Coasting Trade Act. Inquiries should be addressed to the Carrier and Cargo Policy Section of the Canada Border Services Agency ( CBSA ) (31).

If it is deemed that a Coasting Trade Licence is required, Transport Canada, Marine Safety will be advised and an authority for the temporary importation of a vessel will be issued by CBSA . Marine Safety is then responsible for carrying out a survey in accordance with the Coasting Trade Act. If the vessel complies with all the applicable requirements of the appropriate international maritime conventions, a Coasting Trade Survey form ( SIC 10), is issued by the Marine Inspector enabling the Customs Officer to issue the Coasting Trade Licence.

The survey is usually carried out at the first Canadian port of call or a mutually agreed location. All expenses related to this survey are the cruise organizer’s/shipowner’s responsibility. Charges (including overtime) are based on the fees established in the Board of Steamship Inspection Scale of Fees Regulations and the direct costs incurred for travel, accommodation and meals in accordance with the Government of Canada Treasury Board Guidelines.

6.2 Customs Clearance

The cruise organizer/shipowner is responsible for arranging customs clearance for the ship, crew and the passengers. There are no official marine ports of entry north of 60° North. As a consequence, locations for inward and outward clearance must be mutually agreed between the Canada Border Services Agency and the cruise operator. Inquiries should be addressed to the appropriate region depending on the location of the proposed entry port.

Customs officers are normally deployed from southern Canada and the cruise operator will be responsible for the cost of their transportation to and from, and accommodation at the agreed marine port of entry.

The Canada Border Services Agency requires the vessel schedule and itinerary to be submitted well in advance (29,30). There are a number of forms, lists and certificates that must be provided for both inward and outward clearance, and it is the responsibility of the cruise ship operator to have these documents prepared in advance.

All ship’s stores on board are to be closed and sealed upon arrival at the first Canadian port, and must remain closed for the duration of the stay.

7. Immigration Services - Citizenship and Immigration Canada

The cruise organizer or shipowner is responsible for arranging immigration clearance for the ship’s crew and passengers. Depending on the proposed port of entry (east or west), inquiries should be addressed to the appropriate region of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (13,14).

8. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)

The RCMP Divisional Headquarters in Whitehorse, Yellowknife and Iqaluit are responsible for law enforcement in their respective Territories (10,11,12). The RCMP is represented in most Arctic communities by officers, usually one or two to a detachment.

One of the main responsibilities of the RCMP is the welfare of the residents of the area. All detachments are connected by radio to Whitehorse, Yellowknife and Iqaluit. These detachments can be very helpful to cruise operators provided they are aware of the vessel’s schedule and itinerary.

Therefore, the schedule and itinerary of proposed cruises should be sent to the respective detachments well in advance, particularly for a Northwest Passage voyage. For entrance into the Yukon, the NCOIC Federal Enforcement Section (12) should be contacted, while the Criminal Operations Division (10) is responsible for the Northwest Territories and the Operational Support Division takes the responsibility for Nunavut (11).

9. Canadian Armed Forces - Northern Area

The Canadian Forces Northern Area Headquarters is located in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories (4). The Armed Forces have an interest in Arctic cruises, particularly as they relate to Canadian sovereignty issues. Visitors to the North are not permitted entry into any Canadian Forces infrastructure or other defence establishments.

The Commander of the Canadian Armed Forces Northern Area should be advised of a vessel’s schedule and itinerary as this information would assist in Canadian Forces in coordinating a Search and Rescue response, if the need arose. It should also be noted that most communities in the North have an established Canadian Ranger Patrol who as military reservists constitute a military presence in their local community area. The Rangers are also a Search and Rescue resource.

10. Helicopters

Some cruise ships are equipped to carry a helicopter for ice reconnaissance, passenger sightseeing and, if necessary, for medical evacuation. It is essential to ensure that the helicopter, the operator, and the pilot are licensed to fly in Canadian air space and that insurance is in place.

As a general rule, only Canadian-registered aircraft may be used to transport passengers within Canadian airspace. It may be possible, in special circumstances, to use foreign registered aircraft for ice reconnaissance not involving landings. Cruise ship operators should contact the Canada Border Services Agency (31) for further information and approvals.

It is essential that the helicopter operator provide drummed fuel as part of the charter. These drums must be stowed in releasable racks on the stern of the vessel. When refuelling on board, portable cans should be used to transfer fuel from the stored drums to the helicopter pad. A firefighting party must be in attendance at all times during on board helicopter operations. It is also recommended that a suitably manned and equipped launch boat be standing by in case of an emergency over water.

Canadian owned helicopters and their experienced Arctic pilots have an excellent reputation.

Operators should be aware of the potential impact of overflying protected areas, parks and environmentally sensitive areas. As a general rule, aircraft should maintain a minimum altitude of 500 metres over wildlife, including marine mammals. Detailed information should be obtained from those organizations defining and administering such areas.

11. Federal and Territorial Agencies

Once the vessel has obtained permission to enter Arctic waters in Canada, the cruise organizer/shipowner should contact the territorial governments and local authorities regarding licences, permits, environmental issues and other concerns.

A tourism establishment licence has to be obtained for the territory in which the vessel is planning to sail. Also, permits or written approvals are required for parties visiting wildlife sanctuaries, national parks, archaeological sites, and heritage sites. For any excursion into a community or hamlet, special arrangements should be made with the Lands Manager and community in which the landing will take place. If purchase of animal parts is planned, or sport fishing undertaken, specific procedures need to be followed as outlined below.

Most Arctic communities are becoming well prepared to receive visits from cruise ships provided they have advance notice. The arrival of a cruise ship, or in fact any ship, is a big occasion for these remote communities and cruise ship operators and the cruise director should provide to all agencies details of what the passengers wish to do once ashore. Organizers should be aware, however, that the infrastructure in most Arctic communities is limited and thus they may not be able to welcome large numbers of people at one time. Communicating plans to the local authorities early in the process should alleviate any potential problems.

11.1 Tourist Establishment Licence


  • Cruise ship operators planning to sail in Nunavut must obtain a licence from the Department of Sustainable Development in Iqaluit (36);
  • If on-board sleeping and dining facilities are included, a Tourist Establishment Licence is also required;
  • If the operator is planning to visit a Nunavut community or hamlet, the licence must be accompanied by a letter of support from that hamlet. When arranging a shore excursion to a hamlet the operator must contact the Enforcement Officer in the region of Nunavut to be entered. Application forms will be forwarded and assistance will be provided;
  • For more information it is recommended to contact the Senior Advisor, Legislation and Enforcement for the Department (37);
  • This licence must be renewed annually and expires on December 31.

Northwest Territories

  • Similar procedures should be followed for sailing in the Northwest Territories, where the Manager of Enforcement and Legislative Services with the Department of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development ( RWED ) should be contacted (41).


  • The north shore of Yukon as well as Herschel Island have been designated as protected areas by the Yukon Government. Cruise ship operators planning shore excursions in Yukon must obtain a Wilderness Tourism Licence from the Department of Renewable Resources in Whitehorse (45,46).

11.2 Exporting of Animal Parts (Sport Fishing and Purchases of Ivory)

For passengers wishing to fish, a sport fishing licence is required which is issued by the appropriate Territorial Government. Often the Department of Sustainable Development (Nunavut) will send an officer aboard the vessel to issue fishing licences to those who want them (36).

For the export of any animal part a Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species ( C.I.T.E.S. ) Export Permit is required. C.I.T.E.S. regulates the export of all wildlife out of Canada. A territorial Wildlife Export Permit and/or a Marine Mammal Export Permit will also be required from the applicable territorial government.

It is the personal responsibility of the individual who has obtained the wildlife product (whether by purchase or by fishing or hunting) to obtain the requisite permits. A cruise ship operator has no obligation to obtain these permits, but should anticipate the requirement and make appropriate arrangements on behalf of their passengers to facilitate the process.

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (23) issues C.I.T.E.S. permits for marine animals free of charge, while the respective Territorial agencies are responsible for the issuing of other export permits (36,41,45). Permits may be obtained from a number of local offices. However, not every community has such an office. Also, depending on local circumstances, advance notice of one or two days may be required. It is recommended that ship operators make prior arrangement with a suitable local office so that passengers may obtain the required permits prior to the end of the cruise.

Many countries, including the United States of America, impose strict limitations on the importation of animal parts. Passengers should be aware of the requirements established by their home countries for the import of this type of material. It is recommended that cruise ship operators inform their passengers about the requirements and/or restrictions imposed by their home countries (including countries they may travel through en route to home), prior to landing them at locations where such products may be purchased or otherwise obtained.

11.3 Wildlife Areas and Bird Sanctuaries

(Canadian Wildlife Service ( CWS ) - Environment Canada)

Excursions visiting Bird Sanctuaries or National Wildlife Areas in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut need a permit from the Canadian Wildlife Service ( CWS ) (25). A permit is also required for any ship-based scientific parties that plan to kill or collect migratory birds or eggs.

The CWS also publishes Guidelines for Seabird Colony Viewing by Cruise Ships. It is recommended that all organizers intending to stop at Arctic seabird colonies ensure that their staff read and adhere to these guidelines.

Permit applications, copies of the guidelines, and other information on Arctic wildlife are available from the Yellowknife and Iqaluit offices of the CWS (25).

11.4 Defensive Firearms

It is normally recommended that a high powered rifle and a shotgun be carried on board for the protection of passengers on shore excursions from polar and grizzly bears. These firearms must be reported to the Customs Agent. Hunting game is not permitted in the Canadian Arctic during a cruise vessel’s voyage. Only crewmembers experienced with animals and firearms should be in control of the firearms, and they should accompany each group. The Department of Sustainable Development (Nunavut) (36) occasionally offers short talks on bear safety/awareness to small or medium sized groups that are heading into bear country. This department should be involved when making arrangements for any shore excursions.

The Canadian federal government has established a registry for all firearms in the country. The RCMP (10,11,12) should be contacted to ensure the legality of firearms carried on board cruise ships.

The territorial sustainable development and renewable resource authorities (36,41,45) request the reporting of encounters with bears in order to build up a database to minimize the likelihood of such encounters in the future.

11.5 Archaeological and Heritage Sites

There are many such sites in the Canadian Arctic as a result of centuries of habitation and exploration (38,43,45,46). These are protected by legislation and the sites must not be disturbed.

Cruise directors and heritage site lecturers should be fully aware that legislation is in place for the protection of such sites. Artifacts must not be removed. Care should be taken by visitors, as foot traffic may damage the soil and vegetation.

Registration and licensing for visits into protected sites are controlled by the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre for the Northwest Territories (42), and the Department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth in Nunavut (39).

These agencies are also an excellent source of information on cultural and heritage activities in the north that may be of interest to cruise ship passengers.

11.6 Parks Canada

This Federal agency is responsible for the management and maintenance of all National Parks and National Historic Sites. Any tourist activity within any of these locations should be coordinated with the Parks Canada administration (27, 28).

12.1 Canadian Hydrographic Services - DFO

The Canadian Hydrographic Service ( CHS ) is responsible for the charting of all Canadian waters. Southern Canada is well charted but north of 60° North much work remains to be done. Soundings in many areas west and south of Resolute Bay are based on reconnaissance surveys only and are therefore not up to international standards. Mariners are thus cautioned to keep an echo sounder running continuously and always to use the largest scale chart available.

A chart catalogue with a full selection of Arctic charts is available from CHS Ottawa (21). The catalogue also provides a list of Canadian chart agents world-wide. The average price of a Canadian chart is C$ 25 plus sales tax. For a Northwest Passage voyage approximately 150 charts are required.

12.2 Canadian Ice Service - Environment Canada

Canada has developed a sophisticated marine ice information service which is recognized internationally. Based in Ottawa, the service provides:

  • detailed charts of ice conditions of the Canadian Arctic by facsimile, internet or mail. These Ice Analysis Charts are continuously updated;
  • analyses of satellite, airborne reconnaissance, reports from icebreakers and commercial shipping communications, are combined to provide the mariner with the best information available in map format;
  • prognostications of expected weekly conditions; and
  • a general forecast for the period July to October is issued at the end of May for planning marine operations.

A modest fee is charged for the service depending upon the customer’s area of operation and requirements. Information may be obtained from Environment Canada, Canadian Ice Service (24).

Ice and weather information is also broadcast by the Canadian Coast Guard radio stations in the North. Times and frequencies may be found in the annual Notices to Mariners, Radio Aids to Marine Navigation, or from NORDREG .

12.3 Required Publications

The following publications or their equivalents are required to be on board all vessels.

Available from the Canadian Hydrographic Service, Ottawa (21) or chart agents:

  • Arctic Sailing Directions Volumes I, II, and III;
  • Arctic Tide and Current Tables;
  • Annual Notices to Mariners (previously referred to for information on NORDREG ).
  • Ice Navigation in Canadian Waters, published by the Canadian Coast Guard;

Available from Transport Canada Marine (1):

  • Arctic Ice Regime Shipping System Standard, published by Transport Canada, Prairie and Northern Region – Marine.

12.4 Ice Navigation in Canadian Waters

Every vessel of 100 gross tons or more, navigating in Canadian waters in which ice may be encountered, is required to carry and make proper navigational use of this publication. It contains operational guidelines and also serves as a reference and introductory training manual.

This document is available from the Canadian Hydrographic Service (21) or from any authorized Canadian hydrographic chart dealer.

13. Informative Publications

13.1 Marine Environmental Handbook

This document, published by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, gives detailed information relating to Arctic marine environmental issues and concerns specifically in the Northwest Passage. The handbook describes areas of environmental sensitivity related to native wildlife species and also to the activities of northern residents. It is strongly recommended that this document be carried on board all ships navigating in Arctic waters and consulted as necessary.

This document is available from the Canadian Hydrographic Service (21) or from any authorized Canadian hydrographic chart dealer.

13.2 Principles and Codes of Conduct for Arctic Tourism – WWF

This document is published by the World Wide Fund for Nature International ( WWF ) (47,48,49) Arctic Program (Arctic Program). It gives a good indication of important facts and general guidelines that operators and tourists should follow when travelling in the Arctic. Every attempt should be made to conserve the pristine environment of the Arctic regions. This code of conduct pertains to the consideration of the region’s public, environment, habitat, and wildlife and the proper conduct of the crew and passengers during their visit to the Arctic. Some key points to consider are:

  • using well trained staff, with experience in the Arctic and trained in remote location first aid,
  • ensuring that clients respect religious grounds, churches, cemeteries, and other sites with religious or cultural significance,
  • keeping the use of motorized vehicles to a minimum whenever possible in order to reduce the environmental impact, and
  • making an effort to recycle whatever possible and keep waste to a minimum.

13.3 Additional Publications

The following publications are recommended for information and reference:

  • Radio Aids to Marine Navigation, published by the Canadian Coast Guard (21);
  • Cold Weather Marine Survival Guide, published by Transport Canada (1);
  • Marine Survival Handbook for Cold Regions, published by Transport Canada (1); and

14. Protected Areas

Various departments in the different levels of government have plans to designate specific areas of shoreline and associated seas as protected areas. The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (22,23), Parks Canada (27), the Canadian Wildlife Service (25) and all three territorial governments (39,42,45) should be consulted in this regard. The location and extent of all relevant protected areas should be ascertained by the organizer/operator. Some of these areas may be accessible to shipping. Some restrictions may be in force seasonally in order to protect the mating and birthing seasons of endangered species. The organizer should obtain conditions of entry and other pertinent details from the appropriate authority.

15. Land Claims and Business

Land Claims are an ongoing process in Northern Canada and can significantly impact the planning of a cruise, particularly in terms of shore excursions. Lands affected by claims are effectively private property and uninvited outsiders are not permitted to trespass there. Excursions may be possible into these areas provided entry is requested from the appropriate authority well in advance and permission is granted. Land claims are so extensive in the North that any land excursion outside a community may well enter one of these areas. The appropriate Inuit associations are listed in the Appendix (33,34,35) and should be contacted to determine the extent of lands affected by Aboriginal Land Claims and what process should be followed for landing passengers in these areas.

16. Shipowners'/Cruise Operators' Agents

Canadian shipping agents involved in Arctic cruises are mainly concerned with the cruise operator’s immediate requirements such as customs, fuelling arrangements and provisioning. Agents are not normally in possession of the information and contacts given in these guidelines that are necessary for a successful Arctic cruise.

17. Civil Time Zones

The various regions in the North keep local time according to the following zones:


Eastern Standard Time
UTC - 5 hours (East)

Central Standard Time
UTC - 6 hours (Central)

Mountain Standard Time
UTC - 7 hours (West)


Mountain Standard Time
UTC - 7 hours


Pacific Standard Time
UTC - 8 hours

Daylight Saving Time (advanced one hour) is normally observed from the first Sunday in April until the last Sunday in October.

18. Appendix

List of References and Contacts

Note: Addresses and telephone numbers may change from time to time. To ensure you have the latest version of these guidelines, please contact Marine Safety, Prairie and Northern Region (1). Should you have difficulty with any of the numbers listed in this section, please contact the Government of Canada reference line at (613) 941-4823 or (800) O-CANADA.

Transport Canada (TC)

Web Site:

1) Marine Safety - Prairie and Northern Region
344 Edmonton Street
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3C 0P6
Telephone: 204-983-7498 or 1-888-463-0521
Facsimile: 204-984-8417

2) Marine Safety - Prairie and Northern Region
1100 - 9700 Jasper Avenue (Canada Place)
Edmonton, Alberta
T5J 4E6
Telephone: 780-495-4023
Facsimile: 780-495-6472

3) Regional Security and Emergency Preparedness Offices
Web site:

Mr. Jean Barrette
Director Security Operations
Place de Ville, Tower C
330 Sparks Street, 13th Floor
Ottawa, Ontario Telephone: 613-990 –1076
K1A 0N5

Operations planning:

  • Atlantic Region
    Ozzie Auffrey, Regional Director
    Security and Emergency Preparedness
    Telephone: 506-851-7572
  • Quebec Region
    Robert Rivard, Regional Director
    Security and Emergency Preparedness
    Telephone: 514-238-9903
  • Ontario Region
    Paul Kavanagh, Regional Director
    Security and Emergency Preparedness
    Telephone: 416-952-0184
  • Prairie and Northern Region
    Paulette Hébert Théberge, Regional Director
    Security and Emergency Preparedness
    Telephone: 204-984-5062
  • Pacific Region
    Brian Bramah, Regional Director
    Security and Emergency Preparedness
    Telephone: 604-666-5656

Department of National Defence

Web Site:

4) Canadian Armed Forces Northern Area Headquarters
Evans Building
4816 - 49th Street
P.O. Box 6666
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2R3
Telephone: 867-873 - 0700
Facsimile: 867-873 - 0809

5) Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre Trenton
Canadian Forces Base Trenton
P.O. Box 1000 Stn. Forces
Astra, Ontario
K0K 3W0
Telephone: 1-800-267 - 7270 or 613-965 - 3870
Facsimile: 613-965 – 7190

6) Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre Halifax
Canadian Forces Base, Halifax
P.O. Box 99000 Stn. Forces
Halifax, Nova Scotia
B3K 5X5
Telephone: 1-800-565 - 1582 or 902-427 - 2102
Facsimile: 902-427 - 2114

7) Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre Victoria
Canadian Forces Base, Esquimalt
P.O. Box 17000 Stn. Forces
Victoria, British Columbia
V9A 7N2
Telephone: 1-800-567 – 5111 or 250-363 - 2333
Facsimile: 250-363 - 2944

8) Centre Secondaire de Sauvetage Maritime à Québec
Garde côtière canadienne
101, Boul. Champlain
Québec, Québec

G1K 7Y7
Telephone: 1-800-463 - 4393 or 418-648 - 3599
Facsimile: 418-648 - 3614

9) Marine Rescue Sub-Centre St. John's
Canadian Coast Guard Base
P.O. Box 5667
St. John's, Newfoundland
A1C 5X1
Telephone: 1-800-563 - 2444 or 709-772 - 5151
Facsimile:  709-772-5369

Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)

Web Site:

10) Yellowknife Detachment
OIC Criminal Operations
RCMPolice - “G” Division
Bag 5000
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2R3
Telephone: 867 - 669 - 5165
Facsimile: 867 - 669 - 5169

11) Iqaluit Detachment
OIC Operational Support
RCMPolice - “V” Division
Bag 500
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867-979 - 1111
Facsimile: 867-975 - 4455

12) Whitehorse Detachment
NCOIC Federal Enforcement Section
RCMPolice - “M” Division
4100 4th Avenue
Whitehorse, Yukon
Y1A 1H5
Telephone: 867-667 - 5598
Facsimile: 867-393 – 6791

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Web Site:

For Port of Entry issues, including cruise ships:

13) Canada Immigration Centre
Winnipeg International Airport
2000 Wellington Ave.,
Winnipeg, Manitoba Officer’s Line
R3H 1C1
Telephone: 204 - 983 - 8837
Facsimile: 204 - 983 - 3187

For inland immigration and citizenship issues:

14) Citizenship and Immigration Centre
Johnston Terminal Building
25 Forks Market Road
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3C 4S9
Telephone: 204-983-0069
Facsimile: 204-983-3176

Department of Fisheries and Oceans

Web Site:

15) Canadian Coast Guard, Central and Arctic Region
Operational Services
201 North Front Street
Sarnia, Ontario
N7T 8B1
Telephone: 519-383 - 1880
Facsimile: 519-383 - 1995

Arctic Canada Vessel Traffic Services System - NORDREG Canada
(During season, June to December)
Canadian Coast Guard
P.O. Box 189
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0

  • MCTS Operations
    Telephone: 867-979-5267
    Fax: 867-979-4264
  • NORDREG Operations
    Telephone: 867-979-5724
    Fax: 867-979-4236
  • Officer-in-charge (OIC)
    Telephone: 867-979-5260

17) Arctic Canada Vessel Traffic Services System - NORDREG Canada (Winter, January to May)
Marine Communications and Traffic Services (MCTS), St. John’s
Canadian Coast Guard
St. John’s MCTS Centre
P.O. Box 5667
St. John’s, Newfoundland
A1C 5X1
Telephone: 709-772 – 2106
OIC Telephone: 709-772-5149
Facsimile: 709-772-5369

18a) Marine Communications and Traffic Services (MCTS), Iqaluit
Canadian Coast Guard
Iqaluit MCTS Centre
P.O. Box 2659
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0T0
Telephone: 867-979 - 5269
Facsimile: 867-979 – 4264
Seasonal opening (usually June 25 – November 30)

18b) Marine Communications and Traffic Services (MCTS), Inuvik
Canadian Coast Guard
Inuvik MCTS Centre
Semmler Building
68 MacKenzie Road
PO Box 2659
Inuvik, NWT
X0E 0T0
Telephone: 867-777-2667
Facsimile : 867-777-2851
Seasonal opening (usually May 15 – October 31)

19) Marine Communications and Traffic Services (MCTS), Thunder Bay
(Operating Churchill MCTS site, July to November)
Canadian Coast Guard
Thunder Bay MCTS Centre
Suite 400 - 100 Main Street
Thunder Bay, Ontario
P7B 6R9
Telephone: 807-345 - 5190
OIC Telephone: 807-345 - 4618
Facsimile: 807-345 - 2688

20) Regional Ice Operations Superintendent, Sarnia
105 Christina Street South
P.O. Box 2778
Sarnia, ON
N7T 7W1
Telephone: 519-383 - 1855
Facsimile: 519-337-2498

21) Canadian Hydrographic Service (CHS)
Web site:
Department of Fisheries and Oceans
830 Industrial Avenue, Unit 19
P.O. Box 8080
Ottawa, Ontario
K1G 3H6
Telephone: 613-998 - 4931
Facsimile: 613-998 - 1217

22) Oceans Policy
Dr. Jack Mathias, Research Scientist
Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Central & Arctic Region
Freshwater Institute
501 University Crescent
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3T 2N6
Telephone: 204-983-5227
Facsimile: 204-983-3073

23) C.I.T.E.S. Permits
Ms. Pat Hall
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Central & Arctic Region, Freshwater Institute
501 University Crescent
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3T 2N6
Telephone: 204-983 - 5280
Facsimile: 204-983 – 3073

Environment Canada

Web Sites: |

24) Canadian Ice Service
Client Services
373 Sussex Drive, Block E - 3
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0H3
Telephone: 800-767 - 2885
Telephone: 613-996 - 1550
Facsimile: 613-947 - 9160

25) Migratory Bird Sanctuaries and National Wildlife Areas
Environment Canada
Canadian Wildlife Service ( CWS )
Northern Conservation Division

Northwest Territories:
5204 – 50th Avenue
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 1E2
Telephone: 867-669-4769
Facsimile: 867-873-8185

P.O. Box 1870
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867-975-4637
Facsimile: 867-975-4645

Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade

Web Site:

26) Market Support Division
Lester B. Pearson Building
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0G2
Telephone: 613-996 - 0446
Facsimile: 613-996 - 1267

Department of Canadian Heritage

Web site:

27) Parks Canada Agency
25 Eddy Street, 7th Floor
Hull, Québec
K1A 0M5
Telephone: 819-953 - 3546
Facsimile: 819-953 - 9745

For information on planning for new National Parks and Historic Sites:

28) Northern Parks and Sites Establishment
Parks Canada
P.O. Box 1166
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2N8
General E-mail:
Telephone: 867-669-2820
Facsimile: 867-669-2829

Canadian Border Services Agency

Web Site:

29) Chief, Ottawa Commercial Operations and Nunavut
2265 St. Laurent Blvd.
Ottawa, Ontario
K1G 4K3
Telephone: 613-991-0508
Facsimile: 613-957-8911

30a) Nunavut Region, Supervisor
PO Box 500A
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867-979-6714
Facsimile: 867-979-2857

30b) Northwest Territories Region, Superintendent
Airport Place
130-1821 Wellington Avenue
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3H 0G4
Telephone: 204-984 - 0122
Facsimile: 204-984 - 0892

31) Coasting Trade Licence
Carrier and Cargo Policy Section, Import Process Division
Operational Policy and Coordination Directorate
Customs Branch
15th Floor, Richard Scott Building
191 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0L8
Telephone: 613-954-7198
Facsimile: 613-957 - 9717

Department of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC)

Web Site:

32) Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
10 Wellington Street, North Tower
Les Terrasses de la Chaudière
Hull, Québec
K1A 0H4
(Inquiries Line) Toll Free: 800-567-9604
Telephone: 800 - 997 - 0380
Facsimile: 800 - 953 - 3017

Inuit Associations

33) Qikitani Inuit Association
P.O. Box 1340
Iqaluit, Nunavut X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867 - 979 - 5391
Facsimile: 867 - 979 - 3238

34) Kivalliq Inuit Association
P.O. Box 340
Rankin Inlet, Nunavut
X0C 0G0
Telephone: 867 - 645 - 2800
Facsimile: 867 - 645 - 2348

35) Kitikmeot Inuit Association
P.O. Box 18
Cambridge Bay, Nunavut
X0B 0C0
Telephone: 867 - 983 - 2458
Facsimile: 867 - 983 - 2701

Government of Nunavut - Iqaluit

Web Sites: or

36) Department of Sustainable Development
Government of Nunavut
Postal Bag 1000, Station 1510
Iqaluit, Nunavut
Telephone: 867 - 975-5900
X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867 - 975-5900
Facsimile: 867 - 975-5982

37) Senior Advisor, Legislation and Enforcement
Department of Sustainable Development
Government of Nunavut
P.O. 1000, Station 1510
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867 - 975-5900
Facsimile: 867 - 975-5982

38) Nunavut Territorial Parks and Heritage Rivers Assistant Director
Telephone: 867 - 975-5935

39) Department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth
Government of Nunavut
P.O. Box 1000, Station 800
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Telephone: 867 - 975 - 5500
Facsimile: 867 - 975 - 5504

40) Nunavut Tourism (Office Hours: 8:30 to 17:00 ET)
Nunavut Tourism Head Office
P.O. Box 1450
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Toll Free Telephone: 800 - 491 - 7910
Telephone: 867 - 979 - 6551
Toll Free Facsimile: 800 - 307 - 8223
Facsimile: 867 - 979 - 1261

Government of the Northwest Territories - Yellowknife

Web Sites: 

41) Compliance Division
Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development
Government of the Northwest Territories
5102 – 50th Avenue
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2L9
Telephone: 867 - 873 - 7905
Facsimile: 867 - 873 –0157

42) Department of Education, Culture and Employment
Culture, Heritage and Languages Division
Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre
Government of the Northwest Territories
P.O. Box 1320
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2L9
Telephone: 867 - 873 - 7551 or 867 - 920 - 6370
Facsimile: 867 - 873 - 0205

43) Department of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development
Parks and Tourism Office
Government of the Northwest Territories
P.O. Box 1320
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2L9
Telephone: 867 - 873 - 7902
Facsimile: 867 - 873 - 0163

44) Arctic Tourism
P.O. Box 610
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
X1A 2N5
Telephone: 800 - 661 - 0788 or 867 - 873 –5007
International: +(1)-867-873-7200
Facsimile: 867 - 873 –4059

Government of Yukon - Whitehorse

Web Sites: or

45) Yukon Territorial Parks and Heritage Rivers
Department of Environment
Parks Branch V-4
P.O. Box 2703
Whitehorse, Yukon
Telephone: 867 - 667 - 3595
Y1A 2C6
Telephone: 867 - 667 - 3595
Facsimile: 867 - 393-6223

46) Department of Tourism and Culture
Heritage Resources Unit, Cultural Services Branch
Government of Yukon
P.O. Box 2703
Whitehorse, Yukon
Y1A 2C6
Telephone: 867 - 667 - 5295
Facsimile: 867 - 667 - 8023

World Wide Fund for Nature International (WWF)

Web Site:

47) WWF - Canada
245 Eglinton Avenue, East
Suite 410
Toronto, Ontario
M4P 3J1
Telephone: 416 - 489 - 8800
Facsimile: 416 - 489 –8055

48) WWF - USA
1250 24th Street, NW
Washington, DC
Telephone: 202 - 293 - 4800
Facsimile: 202 - 293 - 9211

49) WWF - International Arctic Program
Kristian Augustsgate 7A
P.O. Box 6784
St. Olavsplass
N - 0130, Oslo
Telephone: +47 22 03 65 00
Facsimile: +47 22 20 06 66

Figure and Tables

Figure 1 - Shipping Safety Control Zones


Table 1 - ASPPR Type Ship Equivalencies

Item Col. 1
Type of Ship
Col. II
American Bureau of Shipping
Col. III
Bureau Veritas
Col. IV
Det Norske Veritas
Col. V
Germanischer Lloyd
Col. VI
Lloyd's Register of Shipping
Col. VII
Nippon Kaiji Kyokai
Polski Rejestr Statkow
Col. IX
Register of Shipping of the USSR
Col. X
Registro Italiano Navale
Col. XI
Registrul Naval Roman
1 Type A A1

Ice strengthening
Class AA

Ice strengthening
Class 1AA

1 3/3 E
glace I -super

1 3/3 E
Ice Class
1A Super

1 A 1

1 A 1

100 A 4 E 4 MC

100 A1
Ice Class 1 *

Ice Class
1A Super

(Class 1A Super Ice strengthening)
Class AA 1S







RG 1*


M G 60
CM     O

M G 50
CM     O
2 Type B A1

Ice strengthening
Class A

Ice strengthening
Class 1A

1 3/3 E
glace I

1 3/3 E
Ice Class 1A

1 A 1

1 A 1

100 A 4 E 3

100 A1
Ice Class 1

Ice Class 1A

(Class 1A Ice strengthening)

Class A 1S



RG 1


M G 40
CM     O
3 Type C A1

Ice strengthening
Class B

Ice strengthening
Class 1B

1 3/3 E
glace II

1 3/3 E
Ice Class 1B

1 A 1

1 A 1


100 A 4 E 2

100 A1
Ice Class 2

Ice Class 1B

(Class 1B Ice strengthening)

Class B 1S




RG 2


M G 30
CM     O
4 Type D A1

Ice strengthening
Class C

Ice strengthening
Class 1C

1 3/3 E
glace III

1 3/3 E
Ice Class 1C

1 A 1


100 A 4 E 1

100 A1
Ice Class 3

Ice Class 1D

(Class 1C Ice strengthening)

Class C 1S





RG 3


M G 20
CM     O
5 Type E A1

1 3/3 E 1 A 1 100 A 4
100 A1
100A-1.1 RNR
CM     O

1 The mark * in these columns is optional.

Table 2: Entry and Exit Dates for Zones

Item Col. I
Col. II
Zone 1
Col. III
Zone 2
Col. IV
Zone 3
Col. V
Zone 4
Col. VI
Zone 5
Col. VII
Zone 6
Zone 7
Col. IX
Zone 8
Col. X
Zone 9
Col. XI
Zone 10
Col. XII
Zone 11
Zone 12
Col. XIV
Zone 13
Col. XV
Zone 14
Col. XVI
Zone 15
Zone 16
1 Arctic Class 10 All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year
2 Arctic Class 8 July 1 to Oct. 15 All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year
3 Arctic Class 7 Aug. 1 to Sept. 30 Aug. 1 to Nov. 30 July 1 to Dec. 31 July 1 to Dec. 15 July 1 to Dec. 15 All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year
4 Arctic Class 6 Aug. 15 to Sept. 15 Aug. 1 to Oct. 31 July 15 to Nov. 30 July 15 to Nov. 30 Aug. 1 to Oct. 15 July 15 to Feb. 28 July 1 to Mar. 31 July 1 to Mar.31 All Year All Year July 1 to Mar.31 All Year All Year All Year All Year All Year
5 Arctic Class 4 Aug. 15 to Sept. 15 Aug. 15 to Oct. 15 July 15 to Oct. 31 July 15 to Nov. 15 Aug. 15 to Sept. 30 July 20 to Dec. 31 July 15 to Jan. 15 July 15 to Jan. 15 July 10 to Mar. 31 June 10 to Feb. 28 July 5 to Jan. 15 June 1 to Jan. 31 June 1 to Feb. 15 June 15 to Feb. 15 June 15 to Mar.15 June 1 to Feb. 15
6 Arctic Class 3 Aug. 20 to Sept. 15 Aug. 20 to Sept. 30 July 25 to Oct. 15 July 20 to Nov. 5 Aug. 20 to Sept. 25 Aug. 1 to Nov. 30 July 20 to Dec. 15 July 20 to Dec. 31 July 20 to Jan. 20 July 15 to Jan. 25 July 5 to Dec. 15 June 10 to Dec. 31 June 10 to Dec. 31 June 20 to Jan. 10 June 20 to Jan. 31 June 5 to Jan.10
7 Arctic Class 2 No Entry No Entry Aug 15. to Sept. 30 Aug 1. to Oct. 31 No Entry Aug. 15 to Nov. 20 Aug. 1 to Nov. 20 Aug. 1 to Nov. 30 Aug. 1 to Dec. 20 July 25 to Dec. 20 July 10 to Nov. 20 June 15 to Dec. 5 June 25 to Nov. 22 June 25 to Dec. 10 June 25 to Dec. 20 June 10 to Dec. 10
8 Arctic Class 1A No Entry No Entry Aug. 20 to Sept. 15 Aug 20 to Sept. 30 No Entry Aug. 25 to Oct. 31 Aug. 10 to Nov. 5 Aug. 10 to Nov. 20 Aug. 10 to Dec. 10 Aug. 1 to Dec. 10 July 15 to Nov. 10 July 1 to Nov. 10 July 15 to Oct. 31 July 1 to Nov. 30 July 1 to Dec. 10 June 20 to Nov. 30
9 Arctic Class 1 No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry Aug. 25 to Sept. 30 Aug. 10 to Oct. 15 Aug. 10 to Oct. 31 Aug. 10 to Oct. 31 Aug. 1 to Oct. 31 July 15 to Oct. 20 July 1 to Oct. 31 July 15 to Oct. 15 July 1 to Nov. 30 July 1 to Nov. 30 June 20 to Nov. 15
10 Type A No Entry No Entry Aug. 20 to Sept. 10 Aug 20. to Sept. 20 No Entry Aug. 15 to Oct. 15 Aug. 1 to Oct. 25 Aug. 1 to Nov. 10 Aug. 1 to Nov. 20 July 25 to Nov. 20 July 10 to Oct. 31 June 15 to Nov. 10 June 25 to Oct. 22 June 25 to Nov. 30 June 25 to Dec. 5 June 20 to Nov. 20
11 Type B No Entry No Entry Aug. 20 to Sept. 5 Aug. 20 to Sept. 15 No Entry Aug. 25 to Sept. 30 Aug. 10 to Oct. 15 Aug. 10 to Oct. 31 Aug. 10 to Oct. 31 Aug. 1 to Oct. 31 July 15 to Oct. 20 July 1 to Oct. 25 July 15 to Oct. 15 July 1 to Nov. 30 July 1 to Nov.30 June 20 to Nov. 10
12 Type C No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry Aug. 25 to Sept. 25 Aug. 10 to Oct. 10 Aug. 10 to Oct. 25 Aug. 10 to Oct. 25 Aug. 1 to Oct. 25 July 15 to Oct. 15 July 1 to Oct. 10 July 15 to Oct. 10 July 1 to Nov. 25 July 1 to Nov. 25 June 20 to Nov. 10
13 Type D No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry Aug. 10 to Oct. 5 Aug. 15 to Oct. 20 Aug. 15 to Oct. 20 Aug. 5 to Oct. 20 July 15 to Oct. 10 July 1 to Oct. 20 July 30 to Sept. 30 July 10 to Nov. 10 July 5 to Nov. 10 July 1 to Oct. 31
14 Type E No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry No Entry Aug. 20 to Sept. 30 Aug. 20 to Oct. 20 Aug. 20 to Oct. 15 Aug. 10 to Oct. 20 July 15 to Sept. 30 July 1 to Oct. 20 Aug. 15 to Sept. 20 July 20 to Oct. 31 July 20 to Nov. 5 July 1 to Oct. 31

¤ August 1, if an icebreaker is available for escort, in or in the vicinity of Zone 6.