How to Travel to Canada Without a Visa: A Guide for 13 Countries

Canada is a popular destination for tourists, business travelers, and immigrants who want to experience its diverse culture, natural beauty, and economic opportunities. However, getting a visa to enter Canada can be a hassle for some people, especially if they have to apply in advance, pay fees, and wait for approval.

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Fortunately, Canada has recently introduced visa-free travel for eligible travelers from 13 countries who have either held a Canadian visa in the last 10 years or who currently hold a valid United States non-immigrant visa. This means that they can apply for an electronic travel authorization (eTA) instead of a visa when traveling to Canada by air. An eTA is a simple online application that costs only $7 CAD and is valid for up to five years or until the passport expires, whichever comes first.

In this article, we will explain who can benefit from this new policy, how to apply for an eTA, and what to expect when arriving in Canada. We will also provide some tips and resources to help you plan your trip and make the most of your visa-free stay in Canada.

Who can travel to Canada without a visa?

The 13 countries that can now travel to Canada without a visa are:

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Costa Rica
  • Morocco
  • Panama
  • Philippines
  • St. Kitts and Nevis
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Seychelles
  • Thailand
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Uruguay

These countries join the list of more than 50 countries that already enjoy visa-free travel to Canada, such as Australia, Japan, Mexico, and the United Kingdom. However, unlike these countries, travelers from the 13 new countries need to meet one of the following criteria to qualify for an eTA:

  • They have held a Canadian visitor visa in the last 10 years; or
  • They currently hold a valid United States non-immigrant visa, such as a B1/B2, F1, H1B, or J1 visa.
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If you do not meet either of these criteria, you will still need a visitor visa to enter Canada. You can check your eligibility and apply for a visa on the official website of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.

How to apply for an eTA?

Applying for an eTA is a quick and easy process that can be done online in a few minutes. You will need the following to complete your application:

  • A valid passport from one of the 13 eligible countries
  • A credit or debit card to pay the $7 CAD fee
  • An email address to receive your confirmation and eTA number

To apply for an eTA, follow these steps:

  • Go to the official eTA website and click on “Apply for an eTA”
  • Fill out the online form with your personal and travel information, such as your name, date of birth, passport number, and flight details
  • Answer some questions about your health, criminal history, and immigration status
  • Pay the $7 CAD fee using your credit or debit card
  • Submit your application and wait for an email confirmation

You will receive an email confirmation within minutes or hours of submitting your application. However, some applications may take longer to process, especially if you need to provide additional documents or information. Therefore, it is recommended that you apply for your eTA at least 72 hours before your departure.

Once you receive your eTA number, you do not need to print it or show it to anyone. It will be electronically linked to your passport and verified by the airline and the border officer when you arrive in Canada. However, you should keep a record of your eTA number and the email confirmation in case you need to update or check your eTA status later.

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What to expect when arriving in Canada?

Traveling to Canada with an eTA is similar to traveling with a visa, except that you do not need to present a paper document or a sticker in your passport. However, you still need to follow the same rules and regulations as any other visitor to Canada, such as:

  • Having a valid passport that matches the one you used to apply for your eTA
  • Having a valid reason and sufficient funds for your visit
  • Having proof of your return or onward travel
  • Having no criminal or security issues that would make you inadmissible to Canada
  • Complying with the conditions and duration of your stay, which is usually up to six months

When you arrive in Canada, you will go through the following steps:

  • Present your passport to the airline staff before boarding your flight
  • Present your passport and eTA number to the border officer at the port of entry
  • Answer some questions about your trip and your background
  • Receive a stamp and a date on your passport indicating how long you can stay in Canada

If you have any questions or concerns about your eTA or your entry to Canada, you can contact the Canada Border Services Agency for assistance.

Tips and resources for your visa-free trip to Canada

Now that you know how to travel to Canada without a visa, you may be wondering how to plan your trip and make the most of your time in Canada. Here are some tips and resources to help you:

  • Check the weather and pack accordingly. Canada is a large and diverse country with different climates and seasons. Depending on where and when you are going, you may need to bring warm clothes, rain gear, or sunscreen. You can check the weather forecast and climate information for your destination on the official website of Environment and Climate Change Canada.
  • Learn about the culture and customs of Canada. Canada is a multicultural and bilingual country with a rich history and heritage. You may encounter different languages, religions, cuisines, and traditions depending on where you are. You can learn more about the culture and customs of Canada on the official website of Canadian Heritage.
  • Explore the attractions and activities of Canada. Canada has something for everyone, whether you are interested in nature, culture, sports, or entertainment. You can visit national parks, museums, festivals, landmarks, and more. You can find out what to do and see in Canada on the official website of Destination Canada.
  • Save money and time with travel deals and discounts. Canada can be an expensive country to visit, especially if you are traveling from far away. However, you can save money and time by booking your flights, hotels, and tours in advance, and by taking advantage of travel deals and discounts. You can find some of the best travel deals and discounts for Canada on the official website of Travel.gc.ca.
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We hope this article has helped you understand how to travel to Canada without a visa and how to enjoy your visa-free stay in Canada. If you have any questions or feedback, please leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you. Happy travels! 😊

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