Canada has a good relationship with many countries. It has tried hard to prove itself as an independent nation. Lots of international events of all kinds get held in Canada. So many diplomats and officials visit it every year. The visa for these people is Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa.
In this article, we will explain the details about Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa, the people who need it, the requirements, application process, fees, and validity.
Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa
Canadian Government created a diplomatic visa for diplomats and officials to visit Canada and do their duties. These people should be from a country that needs a visa to go to Canada. They should also have a diplomatic or official passport.
Who Needs a Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa?
The diplomats who have one of the following options don’t need a diplomatic visa to Canada:
- Diplomats have an old passport that has a consular or official Acceptance. The Canadian Chief of Protocol provides it on behalf of the Canadian Government for Global Affairs.
- They are officers, accredited officials, representatives, or diplomats of a country of the U.N. They may be part of an organization or international agency that Canada is a member of.
If you don’t have these conditions, you need a Diplomatic or Official Canada Visa. Officials need this visa even if they are from any of the countries that need eTA to enter Canada.
What Can you Do with a Canadian Diplomatic and Official Visa?
With an Official and Diplomatic visa, you can enter Canada without going through immigration checks or customs. You must only go through a security check.
After you enter, you may only stay for the time to complete your duties. You can not:
- Stay longer
- Work or study in Canada.
- Apply for citizenship of Canada
- Apply to get Canadian documents.
- Receive Canadian benefits (such as healthcare coverage)
Under a diplomatic visa, you may only perform your official duties. If you want to visit Canada for other reasons like tourism, you should apply for a Canada tourist Visa. Your visa must suit the purpose of your trip.
Having a diplomatic passport does not qualify you to get a diplomatic visa. Only if you have diplomatic duties, you may get an official diplomatic visa.
Who is Eligible for Canada Diplomatic and Official?
There are different requirements to get a Diplomatic and Official Visa. The first requirement is your position in your foreign government:
Diplomatic Visa Qualified Positions
You have to be one of these groups to qualify for a Diplomatic Visa:
- A Head State or a member of an organization that performs the duties of Heads of State. The family of a Head of State qualifies to be with him with a Diplomatic Visa.
- A minister of Government Cabinet or Head of Government from a foreign country. The family of a Head of Government qualifies to be with him/her to Canada.
- Diplomatic agents traveling on a diplomatic mission.
- Career consular officer to start a temporary mission or consular post in Canada.
- An international organization delegate that is in the Temporary Foreign Worker Guidelines. It can include delegates taking part in conferences of such international organizations. Their clerical staff may not include.
- Senior officials or similar positions from an international organization listed in Temporary Foreign Worker Guidelines;
- A Senior officer (appointed at the P-4 level and above) of the Secretariat of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
- Couriers of a Foreign diplomat.
- The Headquarters of the Diplomatic Corps Services’ special cases.
- People who are members of a senior officer or diplomatic agent of the Secretariat of ICAO.
Official Visa Qualified Positions
The following groups are also eligible for a Canada diplomatic and official visa:
- Member of the technical and administrative staff of an international organization or diplomatic mission. Service staff of a diplomatic mission or a consular staff of consular posts come under this group.
- The government sends you an invitation to take part in a meeting in Canada.
- You are an expert on an official mission acting on behalf of an international organization. The name must be on the Temporary Foreign Worker Guidelines:
- A family member of the officials.
If you don’t come into one of these groups, you should apply for:
- a Canada Courtesy Visa.
- another type of Canada Temporary Visa.
Qualifying Rules for U.S. Government officials
There are other rules for some U.S. government officials. The employees of the U.S. government get work permits under the R204 rule. However, some U.S. government employees do not qualify for a Diplomatic and Official Visa:
- Department of Homeland Security officers.
- U.S. Customs officers.
- International Joint Commission employees.
- Federal Grain Inspection Service inspectors.
- Officials of U.S. government who have an assigned temporary posting in Canada and have U.S. official passport.
Required Documents for Canada Diplomatic Visa
You should submit the following documents to get a Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa:
- The necessary documents for any Canadian visa.
- One of the following statements:
- A written request from your country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to accredit the head of the mission or post.
- Your government’s written request for a diplomatic mission or consular post.
- An international organization’s written request;
- A written request from an international organization. It must be in the Temporary Worker Guidelines.
- A letter from the Secretariat of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) for the diplomat or official will work with, signed by, on behalf of the Secretary-General.
- Your Declaration Letter to the Canadian government that explains why they should give a Diplomatic visa.
- Two Canadian visa photographs.
Please note that the Canadian government could ask for more documents.
Application Process for the Canada Diplomatic Visa
The initial step to apply for a diplomatic visa is eligibility. You should find out whether you are eligible for it or not. you can read the section above to know this. Please note that you might need another type of visa depending on the purpose of your visit.
Once you know you are eligible for a diplomatic visa, you should gather requirements. You would better know that Canadian authorities are strict with their visa laws. If one piece of your documents is missing or faulty, your application will take longer. In this stage, pay attention to even small details.
applicants have to reserve an appointment with the Canadian embassy or consulate. You could get one by phone or through their website. When the date comes, attend the embassy in person and bring all the requirements.
During your appointment, you must pay the fees for application processing. If you don’t pay, your application won’t get processed.
Depending on your case, you might need to go through an interview. The visa officer will ask you some questions about your background and official duties in Canada. Please be honest and give true answers.
When you completed all procedures at the embassy, you have to wait. you must wait until your application gets processed. The processing time for Canada diplomatic and official visa depends on different factors.
If your visa gets approved, the authorities will send it to your address. In some cases, you have to pick it up from the embassy yourself. If it gets denied, they will send you a letter explaining the reason.
The fees for Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa
Applicants have to pay the fee for processing the diplomatic and official visa. The fee is C$100. As you don’t have to go through Biometrics, you don’t have to pay for it. Also, you don’t need to pay the passport processing fee.
Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa Validity
The Embassy gives the visa for the time to complete official duties in Canada. Yet, The Diplomatic visa is valid for three months when you enter Canada.
Can You Bring Your Dependents to Canada with a Diplomatic Visa?
You can bring your dependents with you to Canada with a Diplomatic visa. You may bring your spouse and under 22 years old children. If your children are over 22, they must be a full-time student to accompany you. If your children are over 25, they must apply for a Tourist visa.
As well as your family, some service staff may accompany you. If they come to one of these groups:
- Diplomat’s Private Servants
- Live-in Caregivers of diplomat’s family members.
Let’s sum up …
In this blog, we explained all about a Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa.
We covered the groups who need to apply for it, the eligibility criteria, the requirements and application process, fees, credibility, and more.
To find out more about the visa that suits you, go through the menu of the site. You can find all the Canada types of visas at the left sidebar.
You can check the Visa Library website to find more information about other countries’ visas.
In case you have some experience, please write it down in the comment section. Your comments let the readers choose better and avoid mistakes. Conveying your experiences as comments is a great help for applicants.