Thousands of people visit Canada each year. People from all over the world make their way to this diverse country that promises a great quality of life and beautiful sceneries. However, since the onset of Covid-19, traveling abroad has become a complex and even intimidating affair.
Although borders have thankfully opened for visitors and immigrants alike, there are now a number of safety regulations that have been put in place to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.
If you are planning to visit Canada, here are three things you need to know about how to get there, what is Canada’s visitor visa, and the current Covid-19 travel requirements in Canada.
Canada’s Visitor Visa
The first step to visiting Canada is obtaining a travel visa (also known as a tourist visa, or visitor visa). The Canadian visitor visa allows you to travel to Canada and remain in the country for a period of six months.
At the port of entry, the border service officer will put a date on your passport, stating when you need to exit the country. They may also issue a document called a visitor record, which will show the date that your visitor visa expires.
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If you do not receive a stamp, you may remain in Canada for up to six months from the day you entered.
1. Which type of visa do you need?
There are two types of visitor visas: a multiple entry visa and a single entry visa.
A multiple entry visa allows you to visit Canada for six months at a time and it is valid for up to 10 years. It will expire a month prior to your passport expiration date.
A single entry visa allows you to visit Canada only once. Usually, you will need to apply for a new visa if you wish to travel to Canada again once you have left. So what determines who receives a multiple entry visa or a single entry visa?
All applicants are automatically considered for a multiple entry visa. Your application is then reviewed, and a decision is made on which visa you will be issued, depending on your case.
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You will be issued a single entry visa if:
- The purpose of your visit to Canada is limited. For example, if you are a foreign national making an official visit.
- You are participating in a special event in Canada
- There are approved country-specific guidelines in place
Are you eligible?
Before you can start applying for your Canada visitor visa, it’s important to make sure that you meet the requirements to apply. To be eligible for a visitor visa application, you need to meet the following requirements:
- Have a valid travel document, such as a passport
- Have a clear criminal record and have no immigration-related offenses
- Prove that you will leave Canada at the end of your visit
- Prove to an immigration officer that you have ties in your home country, such as a job, home, financial assets, or family, that will require you to return to your home country
- Have enough funds for your stay
- Be in good health
- Medical exam
You may also need a letter of invitation from someone living in Canada. Certain requirements depend on your specific case.
Covid-19 travel requirements
Although travel is allowed to and from Canada, several restrictions have been put in place to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.
As a foreign national, you may travel to Canada if you have been fully vaccinated. If you have not, you will only be permitted to enter Canada under specific conditions.
Applying for your Canada visitor visa can be an intimidating process, especially as we try to emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic and take the relevant restrictions into consideration. Fortunately, there are many aids available that seek to make traveling to Canada the exciting experience it is meant to be. If you’re planning to visit Canada, put step-by-step guidance on your visitor visa application at the top of your checklist.
To learn more about the Canadian visa application process, visit CanadianVisa.org.