Visas to Canada

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Visas to Canada
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Visas to Canada

A temporary resident visa is an official counterfoil document issued by a visa office that is placed in a person’s passport to show that he or she has met the requirements for admission to Canada as a temporary resident.

A temporary resident is a foreign national who has applied for that status, met the obligations of A20(1)(B) and is not inadmissible or a foreign national who is inadmissible but is issued a temporary resident permit. Temporary residents may be authorized to enter and remain in Canada as a visitor, worker or student.

The admission of temporary residents into Canada is a privilege, not a right.


Who requires a temporary resident visa

All foreign nationals entering Canada as a temporary resident are required to obtain a visa unless otherwise exempted. For more information on this topic, please visit the official website:

Three types of temporary resident visas

  1. Single-entry visa
  • Allows the foreign national to enter Canada only once during the validity of the visa;
  • May be issued up to six months before the expected date of travel;
  • Should have an expiry date of at least one month after the expected date of arrival in Canada.
  1. Multiple-entry visa
  • Allows the holder to seek entry into Canada from any country as often as necessary during the validity of the visa;
  • Is issued with long-term validity to facilitate entry into Canada for legitimate travelers;
  • Has a maximum validity date of up to ten years or one month before the expiry date on the travel document;
  • Can still be valid but affixed in an expired travel document (in this case, the holder must also be in possession of a newer and valid travel document and must present both travel documents to the airline carrier in order to travel to Canada and to the border services officer in order to seek entry into Canada).
  1. Transit visa

Foreign nationals who are required to obtain a visa for travel to Canada will also need a transit visa to travel through Canada without stopping or visiting. This visa is required even if the foreign national will be in Canada for less than 48 hours. There is no fee for a transit visa.

The Transit Without Visa program (TWOV) and the China Transit Program (CTP) allow certain foreign nationals to transit through Canada on their way to and from the United States without a Canadian transit visa, if they meet certain requirements.

Temporary residents include visitors, students, workers and temporary resident permit holders. Depending on the foreign national’s citizenship, a Temporary Resident Visa, or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), is required for temporary residents seeking to come to Canada temporarily.


  •    Students

Foreign students are now a prescribed class of persons who may obtain temporary resident status and who have been issued study permits or who are authorized by the Regulations to study.

A study permit is a written authorization issued to foreign nationals authorizing them to engage in studies in Canada.

Therefore, foreign students have the same obligations as temporary residents.

Education is a provincial/territorial jurisdiction and provinces/territories are responsible for regulating education in Canada. It is the responsibility of students to inquire about the quality of the schools in which they intend to enroll. They may verify whether a school complies with the provincial/territorial regulations. The Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials (CICIC), a unit of the CMEC, is a reference point for referrals and resources on all aspects of postsecondary and higher education in Canada.


  •    Workers

Foreign workers are a prescribed class of persons who may obtain temporary resident status and who have been issued work permits or who are authorized by the Regulations to work.

A work permit is a written authorization issued to foreign nationals authorizing them to engage in work in Canada.

Therefore, foreign workers have the same obligations as temporary residents.


  •    Inadmissibility (Temporary resident permits)

Normally, persons who do not meet the requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act are refused permanent resident or temporary resident visas abroad, denied admission at a port of entry, or refused to process within Canada. In some cases, however, there may be compelling reasons for an officer to issue a temporary resident permit to allow a person who does not meet the requirements of the Act to enter or remain in Canada.


What is required with an application?

  •    Proof of funds / financial support

Temporary residents must have evidence that they can support themselves and any accompanying dependents while in Canada. That evidence may include one of the following:

  • Cash, certified cheque, bank draft or money order in an amount large enough to cover all reasonable expenses to be incurred during the stay in Canada
  • Verbal or written statements, which can be confirmed, that satisfy an officer that sufficient financial support from friends and/or family is available and has been arranged to adequately cover all reasonable expenses to be incurred during the stay in Canada.
  •    Security deposits and guarantees


A security deposit is a sum of money deposited to undertake compliance with any terms and conditions imposed by an official under IRPA. It may be provided either by the person who is the subject of the terms and conditions or by a third party.

  • Details regarding the deposit:
  • The amount of money required will be determined by the officer on a case-by-case basis;
  • Payments are accepted in cash, certified cheque, bank draft, money order or debit card (credit card payments are not accepted);
  • Inland offices accept deposits in Canadian funds;
  • Ports of entry (POE) accept deposits in US currency if the depositor does not have sufficient Canadian funds;
  • No interest is paid on the sum of money deposited.

A guarantee is a written undertaking by a third party that the person who is the subject of the guarantee will abide by the terms and conditions imposed by an officer or member of the Immigration Division.


  •    Evidence supporting purpose of entry

All foreign nationals seeking entry to Canada must have a genuine purpose for wishing to come into or remain in Canada.


This can be accomplished by providing:

  • An invitation letter (which can be verified) from the family/friends/colleagues to be visited in Canada, outlining the reason and length of the visit;
  • Contact numbers for persons who may be able to substantiate the stated purpose for coming or remaining in Canada; and
  • Any other documentation that may substantiate the purpose.

For detailed information check the official website 


Foreign nationals who are applying for a permanent resident visa or applying to remain in Canada as a permanent resident must undergo a medical examination

Specific requirements – by type of applicant

  • For intending organ donors
  • For minors
  • For super visa applicants


Electronic travel authorization (eTA)

All foreign nationals who are visa-exempt are required to obtain an eTA to travel to Canada by air.

Electronic travel authorization became a mandatory entry requirement for air travelers. The eTA requirement is enforced at check-in for flights to or through Canada via the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) Interactive Advance Passenger Information (IAPI) system.

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