Answer some quick questions to get an idea about what kind of visa you need to come to Canada!
Please keep in mind that these are general guidelines only. If you need help determining which Canadian visa is right for your particular case, or applying for a visa, please feel free to contact us today.
Want more information? Our free online Canadian immigration assessment can help you figure out the best way to get to Canada!
If you want to come to Canada permanently, you need to get a permanent resident (PR) visa. To get a PR visa, you must be eligible for an existing Canadian immigration program. It doesn’t matter whether you’re eligible for a federal program or one of the programs run by a province, the end result of all Canadian immigration programs is a PR visa.
Permanent residents get most of the same benefits of Canadian citizens, like access to public education and health care coverage. The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms also guarantees permanent residents’ freedom of mobility, so you can live and work anywhere in Canada.
Unlike Canadian citizens, permanent residents can’t vote or run for political office. You also have to meet certain residency requirements in order to maintain your Canadian permanent residence.
If you only plan to come to Canada for a while before returning to your home country, then you need a temporary resident visa (TRV). TRVs are issued for students, temporary foreign workers, and visitors, and are only valid for a specific amount of time. One of the main conditions of receiving a TRV is satisfying the visa officer reviewing your case that you will respect the expiration date on your TRV and leave the country.
There are some countries that have signed agreements with Canada allowing their citizens to enter the country without a visa. These are called visa-exempt countries. If you are from a visa-exempt country, you will not need a visa to visit Canada as long as you do not intend to study or work while here. However, if you are planning on arriving in Canada by air, you will need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). The only exception is citizens of the United States, who can enter Canada on their United States passports without a TRV or eTA.
If you want to study in Canada, you need to get a study permit. If you have a study permit, you are automatically issued a TRV to enter Canada for the duration of your study permit.
To be eligible for a study permit, you need to have a letter of acceptance from a Canadian school, along with meeting other requirements like demonstrating sufficient funds and not being criminally or medically inadmissible. Your study permit is usually valid for the same length of time as the program of study you have been accepted into.
If you’d like to stay in Canada and work after your studies, you may be eligible for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP).
If you want to study at a school in the province of Québec, you will need a Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ). You must apply for a CAQ before you can apply for a study permit if the school you intend to study at is located in Québec. You can’t apply for a CAQ until you have been accepted into a program at a Québec school.
You do not need a CAQ if the school you have been accepted at is outside of Québec.
There are a lot of different types of work permits available to come to Canada to work, but they can be broadly split into open work permits and employer-specific work permits. If you have a work permit, you are automatically issued a TRV to enter Canada for the duration of your work permit.
An open work permit is a type of work permit that allows a person to work for any employer anywhere in Canada, without needing a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). An LMIA is a document that demonstrates the employer tried and failed to find a Canadian citizen or permanent resident to fill the position being offered to a foreign national.
There are only a few situations where someone would be eligible for an open worker permit. Adults accompanying their family members on a study permit, for example, may be eligible to apply for an open work permit. If you are eligible for the Working Holiday category of the International Experience Canada (IEC) program, you may also be able to apply for an open work permit.
If you have a valid job offer from a Canadian employer, you may be eligible to come to Canada on an employer-specific work permit.
An employer-specific work permit indicates the name of the employer you can work for, how long you can work, and the location where you can work (if applicable). If you want to change jobs once you’re in Canada, you would need to apply for a new work permit.
Generally, employer-specific work permits require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). An LMIA is a document that demonstrates the employer tried and failed to find a Canadian citizen or permanent resident to fill the position being offered to a foreign national.
Some employer-specific work permits are LMIA-exempt, meaning they do not require an LMIA. For example, citizens of countries who have signed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) who are working in an occupation eligible under NAFTA do not require an LMIA.
A post-graduation work permit (PGWP) is an open work permit that allows some international graduates in Canada to live and work for any employer in Canada following their studies. The validity period of the PGWP depends on the length of your program of study, but could be up to three years.
International Experience Canada (IEC) is a program that allows youth to travel and work in Canada. To participate, your country of citizenship must have an agreement with Canada that allows you to apply. There are three travel and work experiences under IEC:
There are a few different types of visitor visas to Canada. They can be divided into singly-entry and multiple-entry visas.
A single-entry visitor visa allows you to come to Canada only one time, for a set amount of time. Once you have left Canada, you will need a new visitor visa to return to Canada, even if your initial visa is still valid.
A multiple-entry visitor visa allows visitors to come and go from Canada for up to six months at a time, without having to reapply each time. It can be valid for up to ten years, or one month before your passport expires. Since February 2014, all visa applicants will automatically be considered for a multiple-entry visa, even if they originally applied for a single-entry visa.
Generally, whether you are on a single-entry or multiple-entry visa, you can remain in Canada for a period of up to six months. However, there are some exceptions, such as the Super Visa for Parents and Grandparents. Once that period is over, you must leave the country. However, you may also be able to apply to extend your stay.
The Parent and Grandparent Super Visa is an extended stay temporary resident visa for parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens or permanent residents. If you are the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, you may be able to come to Canada on a super visa.
The super visa is a multiple-entry visa valid for up to 10 years. That means that, with a super visa, you can enter and leave Canada for up to 10 years from the time the visa is issued. You may have visitor status in Canada for up to 24 months on each visit.
If you don’t plan to work or study while in Canada, and are from a visa-exempt country, you do not need a visa to visit Canada temporarily. However, you may need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). You only need an eTA if you are planning on arriving in Canada by air. If you have a valid Canadian visa, you do not need an eTA. Canadian citizens, including dual citizens, are ineligible to apply for an eTA. So dual citizens seeking to enter Canada must do so on a Canadian passport.
The notable exception to this rule is citizens of the United States, who can enter Canada to visit without an eTA.
The Canadim Team!
Canada Work Permit
Starting February 8th 2021, eligible Hong Kong residents can apply for a 3 year Canadian open work permit, designed to give highly educated Hong Kong residents the opportunity to gain valuable Canadian work experience.
Canadian Immigration 2021
As 2020 draws to a close, we can confidently say that it’s been an impressive year in immigration, and things don’t look to be slowing […]
Canada Permanent Residence | Canadian immigration 2020
In order to finish your application process for Canadian permanent residency, you need to land in Canada. However, with the border currently closed to non-essential […]
Canada Permanent Residence | Canadian immigration 2020
The number of Nigerians immigrating to Canada has tripled in the last five years. Nigeria is now one of the main source countries of Canada’s […]
Canadian immigration 2020
The Lebanese population in Canada is one of the fastest growing demographics. In 2001, there were nearly 144,000 Lebanese in Canada. According to the 2016 […]
Work in Canada
Many foreign nationals look to Canada as a land of opportunity, hoping to secure a comfortable life for themselves and their families. One of the […]
There’s no denying that right now is a difficult time to be an international student. With the interruption of classes, student residencies shutting down, an […]
Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)
Canada’s provincial nominee programs (PNPs) allow each province and territory to select candidates that meet their specific criteria and nominate them for Canadian permanent residence. […]
Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program
Canada’s Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program (AIPP) has been growing in strides since its introduction in 2017, and has quickly become a promising option for those […]
International Students | Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)
If you want to come study in Canada as an international student, you might be wondering which province you should study in. Are there benefits […]
Canadian Immigration 2017
Considering making the move across the border from the U.S. to Canada? You’re not alone. In 2019, more than 10,000 U.S. residents made the move […]
International Students | Study-2-Immigrate
Speedy processing times for study permits, top-quality educational institutions, and an open and welcoming society are just some of factors that influence international students when […]
International Students | Study Permit
Studying in Canada is a dream come true for many international students. When you receive a letter of acceptance from a Canadian school, it might […]
Family Sponsorship | International Students
There are a lot of great benefits to being an international student in Canada, including the ability to bring family with you while you study. […]
Canadian immigration 2020
In spite of the coronavirus pandemic, Canada has issued more ITAs through Express Entry this year than any other. So far, the Canadian federal government […]