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.
You are a business visitor if you plan to visit Canada temporarily to:
- look for ways to grow your business,
- invest or
- advance your business relationships.
If you are a business visitor, you may need to apply for an eTA or a visa to come to Canada. Find out if you need an eTA or a visa.
If you need an eTA, you should:
- get it when you plan your trip – do not wait for the last minute to apply, and
- travel to Canada with the passport you used to get your eTA.
If you need a visitor visa, you must send certain documents with your application:
- a letter of invitation from your potential business partner in Canada; and
- 24-hour contact details for that person.
You may also need identification cards or proof that you have a job.
As a business visitor, you must show that:
- you plan to stay for less than six months,
- you do not plan to enter the Canadian labour market,
- your main place of business, and source of income and profits, is outside Canada,
- you have documents that support your application and
- you meet Canada’s basic entry requirements, because you
- have a valid travel document, such as a passport,
- have enough money for your stay and to return home,
- plan to leave Canada at the end of your visit and
- are not a criminal, security or health risk to Canadians.
Cross-border business can include:
- buying Canadian goods or services for a foreign business or government,
- taking orders for goods or services,
- going to meetings, conferences, conventions or trade fairs,
- giving after-sales service (managing, not doing hands-on labour),
- being trained by a Canadian parent company that you work for outside Canada,
- training employees of a Canadian branch of a foreign company or
- being trained by a Canadian company that has sold you equipment or services.
Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, a U.S. or Mexican national may also take part in other activities, such as research, marketing and general services. For more information, see the Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada website.
If you plan to stay longer than six months or plan to work in Canada, you may be considered a temporary worker and have to apply for a work permit.
Find out if you are eligibleCome to Canada
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