Depending on your country of citizenship, you may require a visa in order to enter Canada. A Temporary Resident Visa will permit you to legally enter Canada to visit family and friends or to conduct certain limited business activities as a business visitor.
Foreign nationals who are citizens of certain countries do not require a Temporary Resident Visa to enter Canada, however, they may require an Electronic Travel Authorization before flying to Canada. Foreign nationals of all other countries must obtain a Temporary Resident Visa prior to entering Canada. Spouses and dependents of those who are temporarily residing in Canada might also be required to obtain a Temporary Resident Visa, depending on their country of origin.
A Temporary Resident Visa does not permit a foreign national to work while in Canada. When deciding which type of immigration document to apply for, the distinction between a Temporary Resident Visa and a Work Permit should be kept in mind. A Temporary Resident Visa allows a foreign national to enter and remain in Canada as a tourist. A Work Permit allows a foreign national to engage in employment in Canada.
Foreign nationals wanting to work in Canada are required to obtain a Work Permit. The foreign national may also require a Temporary Resident Visa should they wish to travel in and out of Canada. The requirement to obtain a Temporary Resident Visa will depend on the foreign national’s country of origin.
Should a foreign national who is already in Canada on a Temporary Resident Visa wish to commence employment in Canada, he or she must obtain a Work Permit from a Canadian Consulate, Embassy or High Commission abroad.
There are three types of Temporary Resident Visas, they are:
- Single Entry Visa – this allows the foreign national only one entry into Canada;
- Multiple Entry Visa – this allows the foreign national unlimited entry into Canada pending the validity of the Visa; and
- Transit Visa – this allows entry to Canada for foreign nationals who are travelling and who stop in Canada for less than forty-eight (48) hours, but whose country of origin is one that requires a visa.
Foreign nationals who plan to visit Canada for more than six (6) months, and who have resided in certain countries within a year prior to their arrival in Canada will be required to undergo a medical examination prior to being granted a Temporary Resident Visa.