Electronic Travel Authorizations Required for Visa-Exempt Travelers

Update: On September 20, 2016, the government announced that they are extending the leniency period to November 9, 2016. Starting November 10, 2016 the eTA rules explained below will be enforced. 

On September 30, 2016, most nationals from countries that are visa-exempt (except for Americans) will be required to have an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) prior to flying into Canada. The government has announced that the leniency period will end on that date. 

Here are some of the key points to note:  

  • On September 30, 2016 an eTA will be required for all  visa-exempt foreign nationals flying to Canada, except US citizens and other small exempted groups. 
  • If you want to enter Canada by land or sea, you will not need an ETA.
  • ETAs are normally issued for 5 years or until the expiry date of your passport. If you have to renew or replace your passport a new eTA will be required. 
  • Work permits and study permits issued by the visa post and at the border after July 31, 2015 may already have ETAs attached to them.
  • If you hold a study permit, work permit, or visitor record and you do not have an eTA, you will need one to return from travel outside of Canada or the United States.  
  • Dual Canadian citizens must now travel on their Canadian passports. 
  • Individuals with any criminal history may be denied an eTA and be determined inadmissible to enter Canada.  If you do have a criminal record it is strongly recommended that you consult one of our lawyers prior to making an eTA application. 

To find out more information about these changes, contact us at (416) 548-9101, or at inquiries@lmlawgroup.com.

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Long Mangalji LLP