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Do I need a visa if I am travelling through Canada without stopping or visiting?

If you need a visa to visit Canada, then you need a transit visa to travel through Canada without stopping or visiting. This is true even if you are in Canada for less than 48 hours. There is no fee for a transit visa. You can apply for a transit visa by filling out the application for a visitor visa (Temporary Resident Visa) and selecting transit visa from the list of options on the form.

If you need an eTA to visit Canada, then you also need an eTA to transit through Canada without stopping or visiting. An eTA costs $7 CAD and it only takes a few minutes to apply for one.

You may not need a transit visa or an eTA if you travel to or from the United States. The Transit Without Visa program (TWOV) and the China Transit Program (CTP) allow certain foreign nationals to transit through Canada on their way to and from the United States without a Canadian transit visa or eTA, if they meet certain requirements.

New entry requirement now in effect

Visa-exempt foreign nationals are expected to have an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to fly to or transit through Canada. Exceptions include U.S. citizens, and travellers with a valid Canadian visa. Canadian citizens, including dual citizens, and Canadian permanent residents cannot apply for an eTA.

Note: Until September 29, 2016, travellers who do not have an eTA can board their flight, as long as they have appropriate travel documents, such as a valid passport. During this leniency period, border services officers can let travellers arriving without an eTA into the country, as long as they meet the other requirements to enter Canada. Find answers to your questions about the leniency period.


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