If you want to travel to Canada, you might need a visa. A few countries are exempt from Canada visas, but many more need them. If you need one, you should know about a visa and passport. The article explains whether you need a Canada visa or not, the requirements, and who needs short-stay and long-stay visas. Different types of Canada visas to choose from and more.

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Canada Visa

Who needs and Does not Need a Canada visa?

If you need a Canada visa or no depends on:

  • Your nationality
  • Duration of your stay
  • The purpose of your visit

You should know that there are two types of Canada visas:

  1. Short stay visa
  2. Long-stay visa

A few nationalities are exempt from Canada’s short-stay visas. Yet, many more need it. You can visit this article to find out if you need a Canada short-stay visa or not. If you need to stay in Canada for longer than 90 days, you need a long-stay visa. The type of long-stay visa depends on the purpose of your trip.

Canada Visa Requirements

If you need a Canada visa to travel to this country, one important part of the visa application is gathering requirements. You have to submit the requirements to the authorities. If you fail to provide them, your application will get rejected. If there is a fault in them, the processing time will be longer. In case you want to know more about the Canada visa application, visit the page.

The requirements for a Canada visa are as follows:


It must be valid for at least six months from the date you will leave Canada. It must also have been issued in the past ten years.


You should provide two passport-size photos. It must have been taken in the past three months, not older.

Application form

You need to complete the application form on the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada website. What you fill in the form must be true and identical to your personal information. For instance, your first and last name spelling must be exactly like your passport.

Proof of having enough funds

You must state that you have enough money to cover your expenses in Canada. The evidence is different by visa type. For instance, on a student visa, you might have received a scholarship or funds from a Canadian university or educational institution. If you have a job offer, the employer could certify to cover all of your expenses.

Civil status proof

It includes:

  • Birth certificates.
  • National identity cards.
  • Marriage certificates.
  • Divorce/annulment certificates.

Previous passport

If you have had another passport, you should provide that as well. It could improve your chance of getting a visa.

Travel itinerary

You should provide a complete plan for your trip, including the places you will visit, and the people you will meet.

Police record

You must provide a clean record certificate from the Police station in your home country.

Invitation letter

If you are visiting friends, family, or business people, you should provide an invitation letter from them. For a work visa, having a job offer and employment contract, and for a student visa having an admission letter from a university is necessary.

Medical certificate

You should prove through a medical exam that you are in good health condition.

Proof of accommodation

You must provide evidence of the place you will stay in Canada. It could be a hotel reservation or rental agreement. If you are staying with a host, you should provide his/her name, address, and contact details.

Quarantine plan 

If you haven’t been vaccinated against COVID-19 with the approved vaccines by IRCC, you must provide a Quarantine plan and stay there for 10-14 days or until the negative result of your COVID-19 test gets ready.

Infographic Canada short stay visas, Canada Immigrant visa (Long-stay)

Requirements Based on Your Job Status

If you are self-employed

  • Registration certificate of your company
  • Income Tax Return
  • Bank statements for the past six months

If you are retired

  • Retirement order
  • Payment receipt
  • Income Tax Return

If you are s student

  • Permission leave from your school/university.
  • If under 18, a consent letter from the parents

Please note that you should have the original documents translated into English/French.

Photo Requirements

One essential part of visa requirements is photos. The photo you provide gets used to recognize your face. Since many applicants apply online, the Canadian government has particular regulations for a visa photo. You can not take a visa photo in any photography. The photographer must verify the photo that is taken from you.

To find out more information about the photo requirements, you can visit the Canada Visa Photo Requirements blog.

Canada Visa Application process

The application process for a Canada visa is as follows:

Step 1. Find the visa you need

You should find the visa that suits you depending on the purpose of your trip and the duration of your stay. It could be a student visa for studying or a work visa for working in the country.

Step 2. Determine the eligibility

Every type of Canada visa has eligibility principles. You need to fulfill them. If not, you cannot apply or your application will get rejected. You can also work on your situation to come up with the eligibility criteria, but you must know what they are first.

Step 3. Gather the requirements

You should collect the requirements as we mentioned above. Please note that the authorities might ask for more requirements. Also, each Canada visa holds different and unique requirements that you need to prepare them.

Step 4. Schedule an appointment

You should get an appointment with the Canadian embassy or consulate in your home country. You need to submit the requirements, applications, and your passport. If there is no embassy or consulate in your home country, you can get an appointment with one in a neighboring country or an approved visa center.

Step 5. Pay the fees

Depending on the visa type and the country you apply from, you should pay the fee for application processing.

Step 6. Interview

During the visa appointment, the authorities might ask you to go through an interview. They will ask you about your background and the purpose of your trip. Be honest and give true answers. Remember that the interview is an essential part of the application process. If the interviewer finds you not appropriate or a threat to the public, he/she will reject you.

Step 7. Processing 

Now you should wait until your visa gets processed. It depends on:

  • Your case
  • Canadian Embassy workload
  • Political situation

If your application gets processed, the authorities will send the visa to your address. If it gets denied, they will send you a letter explaining the reason.

Canada short-stay visas

Canada is a popular destination. Many people travel for tourism, business, holiday, visiting friends and family, etc. There are specific visas for short visits to Canada. The type of Canada short-stay you need depends on the purpose of your visit to Canada. You need to pick the right type of visa for your trip to Canada. There are different rules for each type of short-stay visa. If you need to know more about temporary or short-stay visas.

Canada short-stay visas

1. Visitor Visa

Tourist visa

If you want to visit Canada for a holiday, sightseeing, or visiting friends and family, you can apply for a Canada tourist visa. Sometimes it gets called a Canada visitor visa. The tourist visa you will receive might be a single entry or multiple entries. To find out more about tourist visas, go through the page through the left sidebar.

Diplomatic and Official Visa

The Canadian government introduced diplomatic and official visas for diplomats and officials of foreign countries. They can apply for this visa to conduct their diplomatic mission in Canada. While a few countries are exempt and can apply for eTA, many more need a diplomatic visa. To know more about this visa, go through the diplomatic visa article in the left sidebar.

Courtesy Visa

Some foreign nationals are of high importance. Such people might have diplomatic missions in Canada. But they don’t qualify for a diplomatic visa. The Canadian government has introduced a courtesy visa for them. They can apply for a courtesy visa to conduct their mission in Canada. To get more familiar with this visa, please go through the page from the left sidebar.


An eTA is short for Electronic Travel Authorization for Canada. eTA is a fast travel document for countries that don’t need a Canada visa. The eTA lets you get fast entry to Canada. You don’t have to go through the paperwork of a visa to get an eTA. It lets you stay up to six months in Canada. You can use eTA to enter Canada for tourism and business purposes as well. To know if you can apply for an eTA, please visit the ETA page from the left sidebar.

2. Family visa

As the name of this visa group suggests, it got introduced for family purposes. It includes:

Super Visa

If parents or grandparents want to visit their children or grandchildren in Canada, they can apply for a Canada super visa. It also gets called a parent visa. You can apply for a tourist visa to see your relatives in Canada. But a Canada tourist visa is only valid for six months. The super visa is valid for two years. Please remember that if you want to apply for a super visa, your child or grandchild must be Canadian Permanent Residents or Canadian Citizens. To know if you need a super visa or not, please visit the related article from the left sidebar.

3. Student visa

Student visa

You can start your studies in Canada with this visa. It is the same as a Visitor Visa and eTA. But students need a study permit as well. So the Canada student visa is a mixture of a visitor visa, a study permit, and an eTA.

By a Canada study visa, you can only start studying at Designated Learning Institutions (DLI). With a study permit, you can:

  • stay in Canada until your program ends
  • work while you are enrolled in school
  • or work after you graduate

To get more information about Canada student visas, you can visit the article through the left sidebar.

4. Work visa

The Canada temporary work visa is as follows:

Temporary Foreign Workers Program

The Temporary Foreign Worker Program comes under the Canada temporary work visas. It provides opportunities for you as a foreign worker to get a job in Canada. With a TFWP, you may only work in Canada for six months. But you can extend it.  When you are in Canada under a TFWP, you have to work only for one employer. Also, You have to obey Canadian rules. When the visa expiry gets close, you can extend it as well. In this stage, if you find a new employer, you can extend your visa to work for him/her. To find out more about the TFWP, you can visit the article from the left sidebar.

Open Work Permit

Canada Open Work Permit allows you to move to Canada to work. To do so, you need a job offer from a Canadian employer. The employer in Canada needs a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from the Canadian authorities to hire a foreign worker. But in the open work permit, they don’t need to get the LMIA. In this program, when you arrive in Canada, you can change your employer and the location you work for. To find out more about the Canada Open Work Permit, you can visit the related article from the left sidebar.

Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP)

If your student visa in Canada is about to expire, but you want to get job experience, then Post Graduate Work Permit is your option. The Canadian government allows foreign students to get work experience under the PGWP. To find out more about PGWP, you could visit Canada Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP article from the left sidebar.

Working Holiday Visa

If you want to travel to Canada but don’t have enough money, you can apply for a Working Holiday Visa. It allows you to get a job in Canada and visit tourist attractions. To get this visa, the country you live in must have an agreement with Canada to exchange young workers. If not, you can contact a Recognized Organization (RO) to get help.

If you need to know more about Canada Working Holiday Visa, you could pay a visit to the How to apply for Canada working holiday visa article from the left sidebar.

5. Business Visa

Business visa

If you want to visit Canada for business purposes, then the Canada business visa is for you. It allows you to enter Canada for a limited time to:

  • Visit businesses or industries
  • Sign contracts
  • Discuss business matters
  • Attend meetings, etc.

Please remember that under a business visa, you can not get any paid job. To get more information about business visa FAQs, please visit the Everything you need to know about Canada Business Visa article from the left sidebar.

If you are a teacher and want to immigrate to Canada, read this article.

6. Other visas

Visa for the Purpose of Giving Birth

Within the Canada temporary visa, there is one visa for pregnant women to enter the country and give birth. The Canadian government does not prohibit pregnant women from entering the country. When the woman gives birth, the child becomes a Canadian citizen. He/she can claim a Canadian passport. This is true even if the parents are not residents or citizens. If you want to know more about this visa, please visit How to get a visa to give birth in Canada’s blog legally.

Facilitation Visa

The Canada Facilitation Visa is for Canadian citizens who have dual citizenship. Due to various reasons, such people might have lost or don’t have a Canadian passport. They can apply for a Facilitation Visa to enter Canada and do whatever business they might have. To learn more about Facilitation visas, you can visit All you need to know about the Canada Facilitation Visa blog from the left sidebar.

Intending Organ Donors Visa

Thousands of foreigners live in Canada. Some of them need organ transplants. So the Canadian government introduced an Intending Organ Donors Visa. You can apply for this visa to donate your organ to your family members or friends. Please remember that you can not sell your organ to one Canadian citizen or resident. If the government suspects organ trafficking, they will ban you from entering Canada. In case you need to know more, you can visit the What is Canada Organ Donor Visa blog from the left sidebar.

Canada Immigrant visa (Long-stay)

1. Work visa

Canada long-stay work visas are as follows:

Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)

Through a Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), you can get a job and permanent residence in Canada. It comes under the Express Entry program. Every year the government releases the type and number of needed skilled workers. You submit your profile and get the chance to be invited to apply for a visa. The function is like a lottery. But the opportunity of getting a visa is high because the government needs workers.

To find out more about Canada’s Federal Skilled Trades Program, you can go through the Federal Skilled Trades Program blog from the left sidebar.

Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)

The Federal Skilled Worker Program is a platform to hire the most qualified and experienced workers in Canada. FSWP also comes under the Express Entry program. If you meet the requirements, you can apply for FSWP and move to Canada. You must have a job offer in a highly skilled job position from a Canadian employer as well. Please remember that the processing time can take several years. It’s also very competitive.

To learn more about FAWP, you can visit the Canada Federal Skilled Worker Program blog from the left sidebar.

Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

The Canadian provinces, except Nunavut and Quebec, have a PNP for themselves. They can nominate immigrants who want to move to Canada. They may nominate students, highly skilled workers, businessmen, etc. It depends on their necessity. You can apply for a nomination to the province you want to live in. It improves your chance of getting a permanent residency.

To receive more info on PNP, you could go through the Canada Provincial Nominee Program blog from the left sidebar.

Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

The Canadian government has introduced the Canadian Experience Class for foreign workers who want to get permanent residence. If you have worked full-time in Canada for one year or part-time for three years, you are eligible for the Canadian Experience Class. After a few years of staying in Canada under CEC, you can apply for citizenship and get a Canadian passport. Go through the Experience Class blog from the left sidebar to find out more about it.

Quebec-Selected Skilled Workers Program (QSWP)

The immigration rules vary in different Canadian provinces. They have their regulation. This is true for Quebec province. Quebec has QSWP for getting skilled foreign workers. If you want to live permanently in Quebec, you can apply for QSWP. In case you get selected, you can find a job and accommodation in Quebec to continue to live there. If you have one of the occupations that Quebec needs and are fluent in French, you can apply for this visa.

You can visit the All You Need to Know about the Quebec Skilled Workers Program blog from the left sidebar to find more information about it.

Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIPP)

The Canada Atlantic Immigration Pilot allows you to live and work in one of Canada’s four Atlantic provinces:

    • Newfoundland and Labrador
    • New Brunswick
    • Nova Scotia
    • Prince Edward Island

If Canadian employers in one of these four provinces cannot find workers to meet their demands, they can hire foreign nationals.

To learn more Atlantic Atlantic Immigration Pilot program, you can visit A Guideline to the Latest Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program blog by going through the left sidebar.

2. Business visa

Canada Start-Up Visa

In case you have an innovative idea and want to start a new business in Canada, the Canada Start-Up Visa is your option. There are particular requirements and eligibility that you have to meet for this visa. You must:

    • Have at least CAD$300,000.
    • Own and manage at least one-third of a Canadian business
    • Keep employment within three years of being in the country.
    • These are only a few of the requirements. There are more than you have to fulfill.

To receive more information about Canada startup visas, you can take a look at Top Facts About Canada Startup Visa blog from the left sidebar.

Canada Self-Employed Visa

If you want to immigrate to Canada to live as a self-employed person, you need a Canada Self-Employed Visa. Almost everyone with cultural, athletic, business, or farming experience can apply for this visa. Yet, there are other requirements you have to fulfill.

You can learn more about Canada’s self-employed visa by looking at How to Get a Canada Self-employed visa? Blog from the left sidebar.

3. Family visa

Canada Family Sponsorship

If you are a permanent resident or citizen of Canada and have a family member who wants to immigrate to Canada, you can support them through Canada Family Sponsorship. As the sponsor and your family member, you must fulfill a few requirements to be eligible for this visa.

To learn more about Canada Family Sponsorship, you can look at the “What is Canada Family Sponsorship? ” blog from the left sidebar.

4. Other

Canada Refugee Programs

If you have to flee the country you live in or can not return to it due to one of the following reasons, you can apply for Canada Refugee Programs:

    • Prosecution
    • War
    • Natural disaster
    • Political conflict
    • Riot
    • Etc.

The Canadian refugee program has two main parts:

  • Refugee and Humanitarian Resettlement Program. This is for people who need support from outside Canada.
  • In-Canada Asylum Program. This program got designed for people making refugee protection claims from within Canada.

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  1. Tilda says:

    Thanks for this helpful guide.
    I looked over this article, but one question hit me.
    Where should I apply for a Canada visa?

    • support says:

      The answer depends on the country you live in. Search on the internet to find out the nearest Canadian embassy, consulate, or visa center (like VFS) to know which one processes your visa.

  2. bakhtiyor says:

    I want to change my life by getting work visa to Canada and working there

    • B Rajabali says:

      Good. You can read about the immigration programs and work visa rules to find out how.

  3. Monday says:

    Good day I want to visit Canada. How do I go about it?

    • B Rajabali says:

      What is your nationality? Determine if you need a tourist visa or eTA. Go through the two pages from the link on the right sidebar.

    • B Rajabali says:

      You can have photos to prove your relationship and explain to the embassy that due to religious reasons, you should delay your ceremony. It is up to the embassy to accept.

  4. Pankaj Kumar soni says:

    Hi sir I am working in plumber

  5. daim says:

    Hello there, as I am a Software Enginner graduated from University of Milan (I’m Italian) it means that in order to move to Canada for long-term I have to apply throught Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) but first I need to have a job offer from a canadian employer right?

    • B Rajabali says:

      A job offer increases your score in the FSWP. Determine if you are eligible for the Express Entry or not by visiting its free tool on IRCC.

    • B Rajabali says:

      If you have a job offer, your points increase for FSWP. But visit the free tool on IRCC website to know if you are eligible for the Express Entry or not.