Canada Visitor Visa: Requirements, Fee and How to Apply

Planning an unforgettable trip to Canada? If you’re considering a short-term visit of less than 6 months, it’s essential to obtain a Canada Visitor Visa, also known as a Tourist Visa. In this article, we’ll take you through the process of applying for a Canada Tourist Visa, covering everything from eligibility criteria to required documents, application procedures, fees, processing time, visa validity, and more.

Understanding the Canada Visitor Visa:

What is a Canada Visitor Visa?

The Canada Visitor Visa, categorized as a Temporary Resident Visa, grants individuals permission to visit Canada for purposes such as tourism, holidays, or visiting family and friends. When you arrive at a Canadian port of entry, Border Patrol Officers assess your documents and situation to determine whether to grant you entry into the country.

Do I Need a Canada Visitor Visa?

Understanding the Requirements:

For most travelers, a Visitor Visa is necessary to enter Canada. However, specific countries have different entry requirements. Some individuals may require an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), while others may be exempt from needing a visa altogether. To find out if you need a Visitor Visa for Canada, refer to the official website for a comprehensive list.

Eligibility Criteria for Canada Tourist Visa:

Is the Canada Tourist Visa Right for You?

Before applying for a Canada Tourist Visa, it’s crucial to ensure that you meet the eligibility criteria. These criteria determine whether you’re eligible to apply for and hold the visa. To understand the eligibility requirements in detail, continue reading.

Canada Tourist Visa Requirements:

Documents You Need:

To successfully apply for a Tourist Visa for Canada, you’ll need to gather and submit various documents, including:

  1. Standard requirements for Canada visa.
  2. Canada Tourist Visa Application Form.
  3. Bank or financial statements to demonstrate sufficient funds for your trip to Canada.
  4. Travel itinerary or a description of your planned activities in Canada.
  5. Letter of invitation from your family or friends if you’re visiting them.
  6. Proof of relationship if you’re visiting family.
  7. Immigration statuses of your family or friends if you’re visiting them.
  8. Bank statements or financial statements of your family or friends if you’re visiting them.
  9. Declaration Letter to the Government of Canada explaining why you should be granted a Tourist Visa.
  10. Two photos that meet the Canada Photo Requirements.
  11. Proof of employment or education status, such as resumes, diplomas, and a letter from your employer stating your contractual obligations and the need to return to your home country.
  12. Evidence that your stay in Canada is temporary and that you intend to return home after your visit, such as lease agreements or property deeds.
  13. Proof that you do not plan to work or study in Canada.
  14. Court documents proving a clean criminal history.
  15. Translations of any documents not in English or French.

How to Apply for the Canadian Visitor Visa?

Step-by-Step Application Process:

To initiate your application for the Canada Visitor Visa, follow these step-by-step procedures:

  1. Confirm your eligibility for the Canada Visitor Visa.
  2. Complete all the required documents for a Canada Tourist Visa.
  3. Submit the Canada Tourist Visa Application form.
  4. Await processing and respond to any additional requests for information.
  5. Send your passport for stamping.

Canada Visitor Visa Fees:

Understanding the Cost:

The application fee for a Canada Visitor Visa is CAD$100 per person. If biometrics are required, an additional CAD$85 fee applies. Therefore, the total cost of applying for this visa amounts to CAD$185. Additionally, you’ll need to pay for passport processing, which typically costs around CAD$45.

Canada Visitor Visa Processing Time:

What to Expect:

The processing time for a Canada Visitor Visa varies between 8 and 40 days, depending on your country of residence. Generally, you can anticipate a processing time of approximately 1 month for your Visitor Visa application.

Canada Tourist Visa Validity:

How Long Can You Stay?

The duration of your Canada Tourist Visa is determined on a case-by-case basis by the Canadian Consulate. In some cases, the visa may be granted for the specific timeframe of your planned visit, while in other cases, it may be valid until your passport expires. The decision depends on the Consulate’s assessment of your intention to return to your home country.

Regardless of the validity period, it’s important to note that you’re allowed to stay in Canada for a maximum of 6 months at a time. After 6 months, you must return to your home country, spend some time there, and only then can you return to Canada for another 6-month visit.

What Can You Do With a Canada Tourist Visa?

Enjoying Your Stay:

With a Canadian Tourist Visa, you can travel throughout Canada for less than 6 months, as long as you can support yourself financially. However, it’s important to remember that you are not permitted to obtain Canadian documents, reside permanently in the country, work, study, or access healthcare or other governmental benefits.

Can I Bring Dependents with a Tourist Visa?

Sharing the Experience:

Your dependents, such as your spouse and minor children, can join you in Canada with a Tourist Visa. However, they must submit their own visa applications, and separate fees will apply. It’s crucial to submit the applications together at the Visa Application Center or online to be processed as a family.

Canada Visitor Visa Extension:

Staying Longer:

If you wish to extend your stay in Canada beyond the initial 6-month period granted by the tourist visa, you’ll need to apply for a visitor visa extension known as a Visitor Record. It’s essential to apply for the visa extension at least 30 days before your current visitor visa expires.

What is a Visitor Record?

Extending Your Stay:

Unlike a visitor visa, a visitor record is an independent document issued by the IRCC upon approval of your visa extension application. It includes the date by which you must depart Canada.

It’s important to note that a visitor record is valid only while you’re within Canada. If you leave and plan to re-enter, you won’t be able to use a visitor record for entry. Instead, you’ll need to apply for a new Visitor Visa.

You can also use a visitor record if you wish to change your status from a study permit or work permit to a visitor record.

How to Apply for a Canada Visa Extension (Visitor Record)?

Application Methods:

There are two ways to apply for a Canada visa extension (visitor record): online and on paper.

Visitor Record Online Application:

To apply online, you’ll need to create an account on the IRCC website. Once you have an account, follow the instructions guide for extending a visa, scan your documents, and submit them using the online application tool. Payment of fees can be made with a valid credit or debit card.

Visitor Record Paper Application:

For a paper application, download the application package from the IRCC website, which includes document checklists, application forms, and guidelines. Read the application guidelines carefully, provide all necessary documents, and pay the required fees. Print the application forms, sign and date them where necessary, and mail the complete application with all attachments to the address provided in the application package.

Forms

and Documents Required for a Visitor Record:
To complete your Visitor Record application, you’ll need the following forms and documents:

Forms:

  • Application to Change Conditions, Extend my stay or Remain in Canada as a Visitor or Temporary Resident Permit Holder (IMM 5708)
  • Use of a Representative (IMM 5476)
  • Authority to Release Personal Information to a Designated Individual (IMM 5475)
  • Statutory Declaration of Common-law Union (IMM 5409) (if applicable)

Documents:

  • Payment receipts
  • Photocopies of passport pages, including personal information, passport number, expiry date, and entry stamps
  • If not using a passport, photocopies of other travel or identity documents
  • Photocopy of current immigration document (if applicable)
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable)
  • Proof of sufficient financial means
  • Translations of any documents not in English or French

Conclusion:

Exploring Canada is an adventure of a lifetime, and obtaining a Canada Visitor Visa is your gateway to unforgettable experiences. Whether you’re captivated by Canada’s stunning landscapes, visiting loved ones, or embarking on a cultural journey, the Canada Tourist Visa opens doors to countless possibilities. Start your application today and get ready to create cherished memories in Canada.