The eTA, the travel authorisation for Canada
If you are travelling to Canada soon for a business or tourist trip and have a UK or Irish passport, you need to apply for a visa or eTA before departure. Without a valid travel permit, you are not allowed to board your flight to Canada.
The eTA in short:
- The eTA is required for a holiday, family visit, business trip or transit in Canada.
- The eTA is valid for five years and can be used for multiple trips.
- Each stay in Canada may last up to six months.
- The eTA can easily be applied for with an online application form.
- The cost for a standard application is £29,95 per traveller.
- You can pay for your application with Visa, Mastercard, American Express or PayPal.
What is an eTA?
The abbreviation eTA stands for electronic Travel Authorization. With this travel authorisation, you can fly to Canada without a visa. The eTA is issued by the Canadian government and has to be applied for online before departure. To be eligible for an eTA, travellers need to have a passport that was issued by one of the visa exempt countries. These include the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Applying for an eTA is cheaper, easier and quicker than getting a visa, because this travel authorisation can be entirely applied for online, among others. Since the introduction of this digital travel permit, a visa is only required for travellers who want to stay in Canada longer than six months or who, for different reasons, do not meet the requirements of the eTA. Also, check the pages with more information about the difference between an eTA and a Canada visa and about the different Canada visas.
How do you apply for the eTA?
You can apply for the eTA Canada entirely online with a digital application form. In most cases, an eTA is granted within five days. However, it can occur that processing an application takes longer. For example, in the case of a manual check by the immigration service. If your application is subjected to a manual check, it needs to be checked additionally by an officer of the Canadian immigration service. After an eTA application is approved, you will immediately receive a confirmation email. From that moment on, you have the required travel authorisation to be allowed to board flights to Canada and you can check in all your luggage.
On this website, you can find several pages about the Canadian travel permit. For example, there is a page with more information about submitting a standard application, but also about submitting an urgent eTA application. If you wish, you can also check the frequently asked questions about the eTA.
Applying for an eTA is cheaper, easier and quicker than getting a visa.
Avoid delays when applying for the eTA Canada
Most applications for the eTA Canada are approved. In general, applications are only rejected when the Canadian government suspects that the traveller is a possible security risk or might pose a danger to the law enforcement in Canada. With the majority of the eTA applications that are rejected, there is another reason. Often the rejection is to be blamed on an error in the completed application form.
Errors occur, for example, from incorrectly copying the passport number or accidentally answering one of the background questions incorrectly. A small error can cause your application to be rejected. If your application is rejected due to an error you made while completing the application form, you can apply for a new eTA. You can prevent this by being extra careful when filling out the application form. If you cannot find any mistakes, you will still need to make an appointment at a Visa application centre (VAC) to apply for a visa in the event that your eTA application is rejected.
An eTA for a transit in Canada
If you travel onward from Canada to another country, you also need to apply for a visa or eTA before departure. There is no special eTA for a transit in Canada, so in that case, you can complete the standard application form. Read the other pages on this website for more information about when an eTA is required and how to use an eTA for transit in Canada.
The validity of the eTA
The eTA has a validity period of five years. If your passport expires within these five years, both your old passport and your eTA are no longer valid. Did you get a new passport during the five-year validity period and do you want to travel to Canada (again)? In that case, you also require a new eTA. Keep in mind that the fact the validity period is five years does not mean that you can stay in Canada for five years. With this travel authorisation, you can stay in Canada for up to six consecutive months per visit. You can travel to Canada multiple times with the same eTA, providing you leave Canada within six months each time.
Read more about the eTA validity period.
The eTA has a validity period of five years. If your passport expires within these five years, both your old passport and your eTA are no longer valid.
Requirements of the eTA Canada
Travellers have to meet certain requirements to be eligible for the eTA. For example, the purpose of the trip has to be business or tourism. In addition, your stay in Canada cannot exceed six consecutive months. A short study of up to six months is also possible with an eTA. Travellers who wish to study in Canada for a longer period of time or who want to work for a Canadian organisation or a Canadian-based company, additionally require a study permit or work permit.
Additionally, there are requirements regarding the validity of the traveller’s passport. For example, the passport that is used for the eTA application and the trip to Canada needs to contain a digital chip with biometric information about the traveller, among others. You can read more about this on the page about the passport requirements for obtaining an eTA.
Travellers who have been convicted, who have one or more transmittable diseases or who use drugs, are not eligible for an eTA.
Cost and payment methods
A standard application for the eTA Canada is £29,95 per person. You can pay with Visa, Mastercard, American Express or PayPal. No additional transaction costs or application costs are charged. Furthermore, because you pay the cost in pounds and not in Canadian dollars, you will not be adversely affected by any exchange rate fluctuations or the surcharge charged by your credit card company.
Read more about this on the page about the cost of the eTA and the available payment methods.
Submit an eTA application online now
Do you have enough information and do you want to start applying for your eTA Canada immediately? In that case, click on the button below, and you are then redirected to the online application form.
Transit in Canada to a flight to the USA
to Canada to transfer to a flight to the United States of America, you require an ESTA USA in addition to the eTA Canada. The ESTA is a travel authorisation for the USA which is comparable to the eTA Canada. If you arrive in Canada by plane and travel onward to the United States, you therefore require both an eTA and an ESTA USA.