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Do you need an eTA for Canada?

Do you need an eTA for Canada?

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Did you know that if you’re visiting Canada you’ll probably need to apply for an eTA Canada before you travel?

It’s an Electronic Travel Authorization and is basically a permit for you to enter the country and is an online substitute for a visa. It’s something I forget about nearly every time I visit Canada and I’m the same when it comes to applying for an ESTA when I’m travelling to the USA. I know I don’t need a visa to visit the US or Canada but that sneaky eTA and ESTA have caught me out!

Lucky, you can apply for an eTA really quickly. If you still aren’t quite sure what it is, here’s a website that simplifies the eTA meaning and tells you exactly what you need to know.

Let’s start with the basics because I’ve found it unnecessarily difficult to find out who needs an eTA for Canada! I don’t know why this list isn’t just one click from the homepage!

^I went dog sledding during my first trip to Canada!


Do you need an eTA for Canada?

If you hold any of these passports then you do need an eTA.

  • Andorra
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • British citizen
  • British National (Overseas)
  • British overseas citizen (re-admissible to the United Kingdom)
  • British overseas territory citizen with citizenship through birth, descent, naturalisation or registration in one of the British overseas territories of:
    • Anguilla
    • Bermuda
    • British Virgin Islands
    • Cayman Islands
    • Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
    • Gibraltar
    • Montserrat
    • Pitcairn Island
    • Saint Helena
    • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • British Subject with a right of abode in the United Kingdom
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Bulgaria
  • Chile
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China, must have a passport issued by Hong Kong SAR.
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Israel, must have a national Israeli passport
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Republic of Korea
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Mexico
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Samoa
  • San Marino
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan, must have an ordinary passport issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Taiwan that includes the personal identification number
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Vatican City State, must have a passport or travel document issued by the Vatican.


What if you’re not from one of these countries?

If you’re from the US then you don’t need a visa or an eTA for Canada. And don’t forget that if you hold a Canadian passport you don’t need an eTA (apparently a surprising amount of Canadians try and apply!)

If you don’t have a passport from one of these countries listed above or from the USA or Canada then you’ll need to apply for a visa.



How do you apply for an eTA for Canada?

You can apply for an eTA really quickly and easily from your phone or computer. You have to pay a small fee and it takes about 5 minutes. Your eTA will then be emailed to you really quickly. In 97% of cases your eTA will be approved almost immediately provided you’ve filled in your application correctly (give it a few hours but it’s usually super quick!) Around 3% of the applications are checked manually and these can take about 3 days to be approved. 


When should you apply for your eTA?

I’d recommend applying for your eTA a week or two before you’re scheduled to depart for Canada. It won’t take this long but it’s best to be prepared and there is a chance you’ll make a mistake with your application.

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How long does an eTA last?

It lasts for 5 years. You can enter Canada as many times as you like during those 5 years but you can’t stay for longer than 6 months. It’s also worth noting that your passport must be valid for the entirety of your stay in Canada, so if you plan to stay for 6 months then make sure you have a valid passport for the entire 6 months.


Do you need to print your eTA?

No, you don’t need to print it. It is automatically linked with your passport so printing isn’t necessary. Of course, if you’re a travel worrier and printing out your documents makes you feel more relaxed then print away!

Foodie's Guide to Edmonton, Canads

^ At Edmonton food festival!

Anything else you need to know?

If, like me, you’re a blogger or some kind of line content creator then I’d recommend keeping that quiet when you’re passing through immigration. You don’t need to lie and make up a whole new career for yourself but in the past I’ve found you can get some extra tricky questions when going through immigration. Immigration staff aren’t sure if you’re working or if it’s a holiday and they don’t know if you should be put in the same category as journalists. Basically, it will take a lot longer and lead to a lot more questioning if you say you’re there to create content during your holiday.



If you haven’t finalised your plans for Canada yet then here are some of our Canada blog posts for some inspiration! I’d also recommend checking out Vicky Flip Flop’s latest video from Canada for some serious Canadian eye candy!



5 Canadian road trips for your bucket list


The Travel Hack’s Guide to the Yukon


52 things to do in Edmonton


Visiting Jasper National Park


Dog sledding in Canada


Glacier adventures in Jasper