Notice - Citizens of Poland and Lithuania require e-passport for visa-free travel to Canada

November 10, 2008 — As of January 1, 2009, citizens of Poland and Lithuania will be required to obtain an e-passport in order to travel to Canada without a temporary resident visa.

Currently, travellers who are citizens of Poland or Lithuania and who hold a Polish or Lithuanian passport do not require a temporary resident visa to travel to Canada. Visitors from these countries will still be able to travel to Canada without a temporary resident visa after January 1, 2009, but only if they have an e-passport.

The e-passport is also known as a biometric passport because it contains a chip which stores biographical and biometric data, such as the person’s name, date of birth, photograph and fingerprints. The biometric passport has been issued by Poland and Lithuania since August 28, 2006 and contains additional security features, compared with a regular passport.

Image of passports from Poland and Lithuania

As of January 1, 2009, citizens of Poland and Lithuania who hold older, non-biometric passports will be required to apply for and obtain a temporary resident visa prior to travelling to Canada. This requirement was announced when Canada removed the visa requirement for citizens of Poland and Lithuania on March 1, 2008.

Note: A visa exemption does not guarantee a person automatic entry to Canada. All visitors to Canada must satisfy a Canada Border Services Officer at the time of their arrival in Canada that they meet Canadian entry requirements. Some people, including those who have been previously deported from Canada or who have criminal records, may not be admissible to Canada.

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