Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) - Foreign Nationals Flying into Canada

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) have introduced a new electronic travel authorization (eTA). Starting March 15, 2016, foreign nationals from countries who did not previously need authorization (visas) to fly to Canada by air will now need an electronic travel authorization (eTA). This includes those who hold a work or study permit issued prior to August 1, 2015, those who do not hold visa, visitors to the university, and American Green Card holders.

People who will be affected by this change:
  1. Foreign Workers and Students at the University who hold a work or study permit issued prior to August 1, 2015 (please note that from August 1, 2015, an eTA was built into all new work and study permits);
  2. Any foreign visitors who are travelling to the University and do not hold a Temporary Resident Visa or authorization for a Canadian work or study permit dated after August 1, 2015. 
  3. American Green Card holders (permanent residents who hold foreign passports from outside the US).
People who are not affected by this change:
  1. People from countries who already require a visa to enter Canada will continue to apply for Temporary Resident Visas to travel and do not need a separate eTA: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/visas-all.asp
  2. Canadian citizens and permanent residents do not need an eTA. Canadian citizens continue to use their passport and Canadian Permanent Residents (PR's) use their Permanent Resident Card to travel.
  3. American citizens do not need an eTA to enter Canada. 

Action by staff and faculty who are working or dealing with foreign nationals who may enter or re-enter Canada by air:

Please refer all foreign nationals who are visiting, working and/or studying in your area to use this Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada link to see if they need a Temporary Resident Visa or an eTA to travel into or return to Canada by air: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/visas.asp

If you are inviting a foreign visitor to the university soon, they can apply for their eTA now. It costs just $7 and lasts for up to five years. The process only takes a few minutes to complete on-line.

For more information, please contact Jayne Booth (780-492-8165), Cyndi Killingsworth, (780-492-6072), Dallas Pelkey (780-492-2796), or immigration.services@ualberta.ca.