How to Get a Visitors Visa in Canada

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A visitor's visa is a legal certificate that along with a passport permits international travelers entry into a foreign nation. It grants you limited residency in the country under different terms depending on the type of visa that suits your requirements. All of the resources necessary for obtaining a visitor's visa are available in your own country if you are a Canadian resident. National Embassies and Consulates of more than 100 different countries are located throughout Canada, all of which you can access to apply for a visa.

Things You'll Need

  • Visa application form
  • Passport
  • Passport photos
  • Valid ID
  • Proof of accommodation and income (if applicable)
  • Visa fees

Decide on the country for which you need a visa and locate its Embassy or Consulate nearest you. This information is available in the government section of a phone book or through an online resource like Embassies Abroad, which lists all foreign Consulate offices throughout Canada.

Call the Consulate and set an appointment to appear in person for the visa application process. Then visit the website of your destination's Embassy of Canada, where a tourist visa application form is usually available for download. Applications only have to be signed in the presence of an immigration officer, but can be completed before appearing at a Consulate.

Provide a valid passport with two to five copies of recent, identical passport photos. They must be the standard 2-by-2 inches in size, in color and taken against a light background. A frontal view of the face should be shown without glasses, hats or headwear, with the exception of religious attire worn on a regular basis.

Present an acceptable form of photo identification, such as a valid driver license, student ID or employment card.

Prepare a proof of accommodation to establish the purpose of your stay if necessary. A confirmed hotel reservation, flight itinerary or formal invitation from a friend or relative are acceptable. Consulars of Canada may also request a recent bank statement or credit card statement as proof that you have adequate means of financially support during your visit.

Pay the service fee once you've submitted your application and visa materials to the designated office. It is always nonrefundable and normally paid in your local currency, which in this case would be Canadian Dollars (CD). It can take anywhere from one business day to two working weeks to process a visitor's visa depending on the volume of applications.

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