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The information provided below is not legal advice and is intended for general information purposes only. For the most up-to-date information, please see Visit Canada on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website.

Notice: COVID-19 Considersations & Travel to Canada Guide

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada has implemented travel restrictions that may limit the ability of foreign nationals to enter Canada. Those who are able to enter the country must notify BCIT and complete a mandatory 14 day quarantine.

View our Travel to Canada Guide for essential information to help you create a successful plan a to travel to Canada and quarantine upon arrival.

Updated: October 13th, 2020

Depending on your citizenship, you may need either a Visitor Visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) before traveling to Canada. If your study permit application from outside Canada is approved, then a Visitor Visa or eTA will be issued to you at the same time as your Port of Entry (POE) Letter of Introduction. You do not need to apply separately or to pay an additional fee.

It is important to understand that both of these travel documents are different than study permits. While a study permit authorizes an individual to study in Canada, it generally cannot be used as a travel document to enter Canada.

Note that US citizens do not require a Visitor Visa or eTA in order to enter Canada.

Visitor Visa

Visitor Visas are also known as Temporary Resident Visas (TRVs) or informally as “tourist visas.” A Visitor Visa is a counterfoil in your passport which allows you to enter Canada.

Use the online tool at IRCC – Find out if you need a visa to travel to Canada to determine if you need a visitor visa.

Even if you are already in Canada and have no plans to leave, it is a good idea to make sure your visa is always valid in case you need to leave Canada for any reason, such as a family emergency in your home country.

Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

An eTA is an entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals traveling to Canada by air. It is electronically linked to your passport and is valid for 5 years, or until your passport expires, whichever comes first.

For more information, visit IRCC – Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).