MONTREAL -- The grace period for presenting a proof of vaccination in certain non-essential places such as bars and restaurants is now over in Quebec.

Quebecers aged 13 and over are now required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination to access businesses and events such as restaurants, fitness centres and festivals.

The Quebec government believes that the vaccine passport is necessary to keep the economy open and limit hospitalizations related to COVID-19.

The vaccine passport went into effect on Sept. 1, but the government granted a 15-day grace period before fines could be imposed on violators.

To prove their vaccination status, individuals must present a QR code in paper format, in PDF format on a mobile device or from the VaxiCode app, which can be downloaded to smartphones.

Those 16 years of age and older must also present a photo ID. For those 75 and older, non-photo ID is accepted.

-- This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on Sept. 15, 2021.