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eTAs

 

Electronic Travel Authorizations (eTAs)

As of November 10th 2016, visa-exempt foreign nationals who fly to or transit through Canada will need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).
 

 

 

Extension issued before May 1, 2017

If you never received or applied for an eTA before, you will need to apply for one if you plan to leave and return to Canada by air.

Extension issued on or after May 1, 2017

If you extend your permit, we will issue you an eTA automatically when we approve your permit.

What is an eTA?

  • An eTA is a paperless document that is electronically linked to your passport and is valid for five years or until your passport expires, whichever comes first.
  • The eTA is linked to the passport you used in your eTA application. You will need to present the passport you used to apply for your eTA to airline staff each time you board a flight to Canada.
  • It authorizes you to visit Canada for up to six months or until the date prescribed by a border services officer on your arrival to Canada.  

 

Who will need to apply separately for an eTA?

  • Students with an initial study permit issued prior to August 1st, 2015 from countries that do not require a Temporary Resident Visa* 
  • TRV-exempt students applying to renew/extend their study or work permit within Canada who do not already have an eTA* (Not sure whether you have a valid eTA? Use the Check Status Tool)
  • 1-term exchange/visiting students from countries that do not require a TRV to enter Canada* 
  • TRV-exempt foreign nationals who fly to or transit through Canada* (except those traveling by land/sea) 


* Exception: United States citizens who need neither TRV nor eTA
 

Who will NOT need to apply separately for an eTA?

  • Students with initial study permits issued outside of Canada August 1st, 2015 or later (the eTA should automatically have been issued with the study permit)
  • Students from countries that require a TRV to enter Canada
  • Citizens of the United States and Canada (proper identification must be presented at the border)
     

For a list of countries and territories whose citizens need an eTA to travel to Canada please visit the CIC website.

Where & When to apply

To apply for an eTA, you will have to go online and complete an application form. You will need a credit card, a valid passport, and an email address.

  • The eTA is required as of  November 10th 2016, you should apply as soon as possible (i.e., do not wait until the last minute).
  • Study and work permit holders from visa-exempt countries who received their permit on or before July 31, 2015 will have to get an eTA as of March 15, 2016 to return to Canada.


Applicants who get their study or work permit on or after August 1, 2015 will automatically be issued an eTA along with their permit.

How to apply

Applying for an eTA is a simple and inexpensive ($7 Canadian) online process that will take just a few minutes.

Most eTA-eligible applicants will get their authorization by email within minutes of submitting the online form.  However, some requests may need more time to process. If this is the case for your application, you can expect an email from CIC within 72 hours that tells you what your next steps are.

To apply you must have:

  • a valid passport
  • a credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or a pre-paid Visa, MasterCard or American Express)
  • an email address to complete the online form.


You can only apply for one person at a time.

FAQs

What if I don’t have a Visa, Mastercard or American Express? Are there other methods to pay for an eTA?


No. Currently, only Visa, Mastercard and American Express or prepaid Visa, Mastercard and American Express cards are accepted.
 

Does having an eTA automatically mean that I am allowed to enter Canada?


No. An eTA will facilitate your entry into Canada. When you arrive at the border, a border services officer will ask to see your passport or travel documents and ask you a few questions. The officer will then decide if you can enter the country.
 

I have to renew my Study Permit or Work Permit. Do I need to apply for an eTA?


 

Extension issued before May 1, 2017
If you never received or applied for an eTA before, you will need to apply for one if you plan to leave and return to Canada by air.
Extension issued on or after May 1, 2017
If you extend your permit, we will issue you an eTA automatically when we approve your permit.

 

I have dual citizenship. Do I need an eTA for both passports?


No. You only need a valid eTA for the passport that you will use to travel to Canada. The eTA is electronically linked to the passport you use to apply. You may be denied boarding your flight to Canada if you present a different passport. 
 

I am a dual citizen of the U.S. and another country. Do I need an eTA?


As long as you travel with a valid U.S. passport, you do not need an eTA to enter Canada.
 

What happens if I get a new passport after I have received an eTA?


If you get a new passport, you will need to get a new eTA. Your eTA is electronically linked to your passport.
 

What type of information do I need to complete an eTA application?


You will need to provide the biographic information from your passport. This includes your name, date and place of birth, gender, marital status, address, nationality and passport number. You will also need to answer a few simple background questions to determine if you can come to Canada. For example, you will be asked about how much money you have available for your visit to Canada, and if you have any medical issues.
 

Why would I apply for an eTA before I need it to enter Canada? Why wouldn’t I just wait until September 15, 2016?


Travellers who get an eTA early will have the benefit of knowing that they have been pre-screened to travel to Canada, streamlining their entry into the country. Any issues resulting from your application can be dealt with before your trip, rather than when you arrive in Canada.
 

Do I need to apply for an eTA before I book my airline ticket?


We recommend that you submit your eTA application before you buy your airline ticket. This way, if you encounter any difficulties when you apply, you can resolve any issues before you book your flight. In most cases, the eTA will be issued in minutes, which will not delay your flight booking. However, some requests may need more time to process.
 

What if I do not know if an eTA has been issued to me?


As the eTA is electronically linked to your passport it may not be obvious that an eTA has been issued to you.  If you have any doubts, you can verify the status of your eTA on CIC’s website.