There are procedures to follow and requirements to meet if you intend to travel to Canada for study, business, tourism, or to visit friends or family. This Canadian visa application requirements page will explain what documents you will need to travel to Canada as a tourist, to visit a friend or family member, to do business, or to transit through Canada, as well as how to extend your stay.
Canada is a country in North America that shares a border with the United States. Because Canada is one of the most developed countries in the world, you must meet the Canadian visa application requirements and follow the official procedure in order for your Canada visa application to be approved; otherwise, your application will be denied.
What exactly is a Canadian visa?
A Canada visa is an official stamp in your passport that allows you to legally stay in Canada for a short or long period of time. It is a legal entry document issued by the Canadian Consulate or Embassy that clarifies your eligibility and entry requirements to Canada.
At the entry border, the Canada visa is presented to the Canadian Border Services Officer (BSO) for clarification. The BSO will ask you some questions, which you must answer honestly and correctly before being allowed to enter.
Canadian Visa Types
There are various types of Canadian visa application requirements available for various purposes. Why do you want to visit Canada, depending on your goals? It is critical that you understand which type of Canadian visa application requirements is appropriate for your needs. This necessitates research in order to select the appropriate visa type.
Visas for Canada are divided into three categories:
- Visas for Temporary Residents
- Permanent Residency Visas
- Visas for the Express Entry Program
Temporary Visas to Canada
A Canadian Temporary Visa is the best option for people who want to visit Canada for study, work, or vacation. A Temporary Canada Visa allows a person to stay in Canada for a limited time, as determined by the Canadian Consulate in their country or Border Services Officers (BSO).
The temporary visa for Canada can be single or multiple entry. A single entry visa allows you to enter Canada once and stay for the maximum amount of time, usually six months or less, before returning to your home country. A multiple entry visa allows you to enter Canada multiple times and stay for a short period of time until your visa expires.
Types of Canadian Temporary Visas
This is classified into five (5) major groups.
- Canadien Temporary Residence Visa:
- A Tourist Visa allows a visitor to enter Canada for tourism purposes only.
- Business Visa: A business visa is only for people going to Canada for business purposes.
- For an extended stay, parents or grandparents of Canadian citizens or Canadian permanent residents may visit their children for an extended period of time.
- Courtesy Visa: A Courtesy Visa is granted to individuals who are of high importance due to their ranks and positions but do not meet the requirements for a Diplomatic or Official Visa.
- Facilitation Visa: Facilitation Visas are for Canadian citizens with dual nationalities. It is mostly given to people who do not have a Canadian passport but have a passport of another nationality.
- Diplomatic and Official Visa: This is for foreign officials and diplomats.This is only given if you are coming to Canada for official duties.
- CanadaTemporary Work Visa—Given to people who have a job offer to work in Canada for up to 6 months. The temporary work visa includes:
- Temporary Foreign Workers Program
- Open Work Permit
- Post-Graduate Work Permit
- Working Holiday Visa
- Student Visa: Available only for people who have got an admission offer from a Canadian university to complete their studies. It can be a TRV visa if you are coming to Canada to study for less than 6 months, or a Student Visa for more than 6 months of studies.
- The Temporary Residence Permit is a traveling document issued to people who are not admissible for a Canada Temporary Resident Visa (TRV). People who want to visit Canada for specific purposes usually get this type of permit for the length of time that they need to spend in Canada.
- eTA: This is an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) issued to people from countries that do not need a visa to visit Canada due to their good relationship with the Government of Canada. If you are from an eTA country, you will not have to go through many visa application procedures. The eTA application process is fast and simple.
Visa for Permanent Residency
A permanent residence visa is a type of Canadian immigration visa that allows foreign citizens to live permanently in Canada. You can work, study, and access the same social services as Canadian citizens if you have a Canadian permanent resident visa. You cannot, however, vote in political elections or obtain a Canadian passport.
Only people who have lived in Canada for at least four years in a six-year period are eligible for a permanent Canadian residence visa.
Permanent Canadian Residence Visa Types
- Immigrant Investor Visa Program: The Immigrant Investor Visa Program is designed for individuals who wish to invest in the Canadian economy. An investor should have at least CAD$800,000 in net worth and be willing to invest at least CAD$400,000 for a 5-year period with no interest.
- Startup Visa program: The Canada Startup Visa program is designed for individuals who will be directly involved in contributing to the economy. They must have a net worth of at least CAD$300,000 and commit to owning and managing at least one-third of a Canadian business, as well as creating and maintaining employment, within three years of arriving in Canada.
- Self-employed Persons Visa: The Self-employed Persons visa is for people who can start their own businesses and have skills in business, athletics, culture, or farming. These individuals must demonstrate how they intend to finance the business as well as their expertise in those areas.
- Family Sponsorship Visa: The Family Sponsorship Visa allows Canadian citizens and permanent residents’ spouses and dependent children to immigrate to Canada permanently.
- Live-in Caregiver Program: This visa is granted to caregivers who are qualified to care for the elderly, disabled, or children in a private home in Canada.
Visas for the Express Entry Program
The Canadian government announced the launch of its new “Express Entry” system for skilled foreign workers applying for a Permanent Resident Visa to visit and work in Canada through:
- QSWP (Quebec-Selected Skilled Worker Program)
- FSTP (Federal Skilled Trades Program)
- Provincial Nomination Programs (PNP)
- The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
Canadian Visa Application Requirements
An applicant for a Canadian visa must be able to communicate, understand, and speak English. Completed visa forms that you have filled out are among the required documents for a Canadian visa application requirements. Your country’s passport, both original and photocopy, should have at least two blank pages.
Two coloured photographs that meet the visa photo requirements and proof of visa application fee. Proof of account statement demonstrating that you have enough funds to cover your trip for the duration specified (i.e. three months’ bank statements, payslips, proof of investments, etc.).
For applicants on a sponsored trip, a letter from the person or institution sponsoring your trip, a copy of their passport, and a bank statement proving they have sufficient funds will be required as part of your Canadian visa application.
You must also show proof of ties to your home country, such as an employment letter or proof of business ownership or assets. other documents attesting to your health status Previous passports that demonstrate your travel history Provisional flight bookings, travel itineraries, and hotel reservations
For applicants traveling to see family and friends or on business, an invitation letter detailing the nature of the visit, length of stay, and details about the host person or business is required.
In the majority of cases, when applying for a Canada visa, you may be required to provide your fingerprints and photos (biometrics) at a Visa Application Centre.
The Canadian Visa Application Process
Create a GCKey/CIC Account
The GCKey/CIC Account gives you access to the Canadian CIC agency’s online services. Citoyenneté and Immigration Canada is abbreviated as CIC. Your visa application will be handled by a government agency.
Your account allows you to start an application, submit and pay for it, receive application-related messages, check the status of your application, and update your information.
You can create CIC account in two ways: “Register with a GCKey” or “Register with a Sign-In Partner.”
Register using a GCKey.
To register with a GcKey, you will have to visit the GCKey registration page. Click on the “Register with a GCKey” button below to start the signup process.
- Click “Sign Up.”
- Read the Terms and Conditions of Use and click “I Accept.”
- Create a username. Click Continue.
- Set your password. Click Continue.
- Create your security questions and responses. Click Continue.
- Click Continue to get to the Sign Up Complete page.
- Read the terms and conditions. Click “I Accept.”
- Enter your information and follow the steps to create your account.
Register with a Sign-In Partner.
Registering with a Sign-In Partner allows you to use your online Canadian banking information to register for an account. You must have an online bank account with one of the CIC Sign-In Partners. The registration procedure is the same as that of GCKey. Just click Register with a Sign-In Partner below to start the process.
- Click “Register with a Partner Sign-In” below.
- Choose your financial institution.
- Enter your banking sign-in information and click Continue.
- Read the Terms and Conditions of Use and click “I Accept.”
- Enter your information and follow the steps to create your account.
Once your CIC account has been created, you must login to access your account dashboard if you have previously logged out. You’ll see a list of applications on your Accounts Dashboard. However, because your account is new, the list will be empty. Simply scroll down to the bottom of your account dashboard. There is a section called “START YOUR APPLICATION.” Click “APPLY TO VISIT CANADA.”
You will be directed to the next page and asked if you have a Personal Reference Code. Click “VISITOR VISA, STUDY AND/OR WORK PERMIT” under “I do not have a Personal Reference Code.”
Confirm your eligibility.
In this section, you will be asked questions about your trip and your background. Questions that are likely to be asked include:
- How long will your journey last?
- Which province are you going to visit?
- Have you ever been arrested or convicted of a crime?
- Have you ever overstayed a visa?
- Do you have a family member who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident?
If your answers to the preceding questions are satisfactory, the next page will inform you that you are eligible for the visa category for which you are applying. Click “Continue,” then “Continue” again on the next page.
Upload your documents.
Please keep in mind that before you can upload your files, you will be required to review the details of the information you provided in the previous step. Check your information, then click Continue.
The personal document checklist, which includes the required documents to upload, will be displayed on the following page. An application form as well as supporting documents must be uploaded.
The following file types are accepted: PDF, JPG, TIFF, PNG, DOC, DOCX, with a maximum file size of 4MB. Take your time organizing your file before uploading it. You may only upload one file per requirement. If you want to upload multiple passport pages to show different visas and stamps, first scan and save the file as a single file.
You have 30 days to complete the uploading of your documents. So, to avoid mistakes, upload them slowly. You will be asked for an electronic signature once you have completed the requirements and submitted your application. You only need to enter your full name here.
Visa and Biometric Fee Payment
Pay the visa and biometric fees as needed. Visa, MasterCard, and American Express are accepted as payment methods. After completing your payment, you will receive an email with your application number, which will begin with the letter V and then a series of numbers.
Submit your biometrics.
You will be required to provide biometric information. Once you have received a Biometric Instruction Letter, you must visit a Canada Visa Application Centre in your country within the next 30 days to have your biometric data captured. The Biometric Instruction Letter contains all of the necessary information and documents.
You will have to wait for an update to your application after you have submitted your biometric data. The first few messages will be confirmation that your application was received. You must go to the CIC Login page at https://clegc-gckey.gc.ca. Enter your username and password to log in. A security question may be required of you.
The summary of your application is on the following page. Scroll down to the bottom. Click the Check Status and Messages button under “View My Submitted Application.” This will redirect you to a new page where you can download the message. Scroll down to the Correspondence section on this page. The messages will be visible to you. When you click the Expand button, a link to “View this message” will appear. To download the PDF document, click here.
Submission of Passports
When your application is approved, you will be notified and asked to submit your passport. Print the passport application letter you received from IRCC/CIC. Barcodes and application numbers must be visible on the printout. Bring the printout with you to the Canada Visa Application Centre, along with your passport.
The officer at the Canada visa application center will give you a number and two forms to fill out (a personal information form and a VAC Consent Form). Then, when your number is called, submit your document. The following documents must be submitted: your passport, an IRCC/CIC request letter, a personal information form, and a VAC Consent Form. The Canada visa application center fee will then be paid for.