How to get a Canadian visitor visa?

Canada is an enticing destination for any Immigrant. The country has some of the most favourable attitudes towards immigration. The Government also plays a prominent role in ensuring the welfare of new arrivals. It famously adopted a national policy of Multiculturalism in 1971 and had more than eight million immigrants with permanent resident status in 2021. Canada receives around 300,000 immigrants a year- some of the highest rates in the world, according to data published by Statista. Let’s start the journey of getting a Canada visitor visa.

What is a Canada visitor visa? 

A Canadian visitor Visa is an official endorsement that makes you eligible to travel to Canada. A Canadian embassy or consulate usually issues it in your home country. 

What are the types of Visas? 

The different types of Canadian Visas are: 

  • Temporary Resident visas/ Canada Visitor Visa- This allows a foreign national from a Visa-required country to travel and stay in Canada for six months. 
  • Transit Visa- It is required by people arriving in Canada to catch a connecting flight to their destination. Allows the holder access to transit areas for 48 hours. 
  • Super visas- This visa allows multiple parents or grandparents of a permanent resident to enter Canada multiple times and stay up to 5 years on each entry. 
  • Study permit/ Canada Student visa- Issued to holders of Temporary Resident visas if they are approved to study in a Canadian educational institution. 
  • Work permit/ Canada Work visa- This document allows a foreign national to work in Canada. It can be an Employer specific permit or an Open work permit

Are you eligible for a Canadian visa? 

You will require a Visa if you plan to travel to Canada but are not a: 

  • Canadian Citizen 
  • Permanent resident or 
  • A visa-exempted foreign national 

You can consult other Canadian visa forums to know if you’re eligible for a Temporary visa. 

What do you need to get a Canada Visitor Visa/ Temporary Resident visa (TRV)? 

There are some basic requirements that you must meet before you are issued a TRV. 

  • The officer must be convinced of your willingness to leave Canada at the end of your stay. 
  • You should have enough money to maintain yourself. 
  • You don’t intend to work or study in Canada unless you’re authorized. 
  • You have no record of criminal activity 
  • You can provide additional documents requested by officials. 
  • You are in good health. 

Process of Canada Visitor Visa Application 

You can apply for a Canadian visa online or at a Visa Application Center (VAC). You should check the latest visa forums before you begin the process. 

Be prepared to share supporting documents like proof of vaccination, Identity documents, Itinerary etc., depending on your reason for travelling to Canada. 

What are the processing times for Visas? 

Processing times for visas vary by country. 

What is eTA? 

An Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) grants entry to a visa-exempted foreign national travelling to Canada by air. 

What are its features? 

  • The eTA allows holders to travel to Canada as often as possible for short stays. 
  • It is electronically linked to a traveller’s passport and 
  • It is valid for up to five years. 

Things to know before applying for a Canada Visitor Visa

You are eligible for an eTA if you are: 

  • A Visa-exempt foreign nationals flying to or transiting through a Canadian airport. 
  • Citizen of a select visa-required country travelling to Canada by air. You’ll still need a visitor visa if you arrive by car, bus, boat or ship. 

You are not eligible to apply for an eTA if you are: 

  • A Canadian citizen/ American-Canadian citizen 
  • Canadian permanent resident 
  • From a Visa-required country or a stateless individual 

You are exempt from the eTA requirement if you are a: 

  • US citizen carrying a valid US passport. 
  • Lawful permanent residents of the US with official proof of status and passports of their country. 

You will also need a: 

  • Valid passport from a visa-exempt country 
  • Valid email address and 
  • A method of payment. 

How to Apply for eTA?

If you are eligible, you can apply with an online form for $7. 

Requirements to enter Canada 

You must have: 

  • A valid travel document, i.e., a passport 
  • Valid eTA or Canada visitor visa 
  • Be in good health 
  • Have no criminal or immigration-related convictions 
  • Convince the border services officer 
  • Money to cover your expenses in Canada. 

Be informed of your country’s status as a visa-exempted or visa-required nation and proceed accordingly. You can refer to the official Canadian government forum and the guides on their pages. 

What is Canada like geographically? 

As the second largest country in the world, Canada has large swathes of forests and frigid lands covering most of the country. The population is mainly concentrated around cities and the Southern borders. The World Population Review’s 2022 data shows Canada’s population density at just four people per square kilometre- the 228th most densely populated country. 

Even though Canada is underpopulated, its population is set to increase steadily due to migration. It has one of the fastest growth rates for a G7 country. 

Is the economy favourable for newcomers? 

Canada currently faces labour shortages and relies on qualified immigrants to meet the demands. Job vacancies climbed to 957,500 in the first quarter of 2022, per Statistics Canada. The economy is very favourable towards immigrants. 

According to the World Bank, the Canadian economy was the ninth-largest in the world in 2020. 

The market has a relatively high degree of creativity and innovation and is ranked 17th in the Global Innovation Index (GII)

What is the Quality of Life like in Canada? 

Canada performs exceptionally well in indexes measuring development and quality of life. 

Canada enjoys a stable Government structure and public service. The International Civil Service Effectiveness (InCiSE) Index 2019, prepared by the Oxford University and Institute for Government, ranked Canada third among 31 countries for human resources management and top five in capability, integrity and inclusiveness. 

Canada has a reputation for tourist safety. It was third on Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection’s list of safest countries to travel to 2022. The report also ranked Montreal- the safest city in the world for travel. 

Getting into Canada requires some preparation from your side. The first and most important official document you’ll need is a Visa. 

Visit Canada 

Now that we’ve covered the basics of Visas and Electronic Travel Authorization, you are ready to start your next adventure. Soak in the majestic views of Niagara Falls, enjoy a night out in Toronto or admire the French architectural style of Quebec City. 

And finally, do not hesitate to share your knowledge on forums and with others. You can help us make immigration a smooth and seamless process. 

Janggoulal Sitlhou

Janggoulal Sitlhou

Janggoulal Sitlhou is a content writer with SettleCanada. He is a Political Sciences graduate and a keen follower of international affairs and contemporary history. He has a background in publishing and regularly dabbles in writing and game development projects. Janggoulal currently writes on issues related to Canadian Immigration.