Basic Travel Requirements
- Have a valid travel document, like a passport or passport equivalent, such as enhanced driver's license or NEXUS card
- Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA): Canada's new entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals travelling to Canada by air. Exceptions include: U.S. citizens and travellers with a valid visa. Eligible travellers can apply online for an eTA. Travellers will need an eTA before they can board a flight to Canada.
- Be in good health
- Have no criminal or immigration-related convictions
- If you have been convicted of driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs, you will probably be found criminally inadimissible to Canada. However as of March 1, 2012, you may be able to get a temporary resident permit for one visit without paying the processing fee. More information here.
- Convince an immigration officer that you have ties - such as job, home, financial assets or family - that will take you back to your home country
- Convince an immigration officer that you you will leave Canada at the end of your visit
- You can find more information here.
Things You Should Know
- Inform your cell phone provider that you are heading out of the country to avoid roaming charges.
- Make sure you know how your smartphone works. All smartphones are capable of using cell data, even when they are just sitting idle. Any apps that are set up to periodically check for new stuff (mail, news, updates, etc.) will automatically activate (and use data) even if you aren't using it at the time.
- Use Wi-Fi whenever possible while out of the country.
- Some Canadian towns and cities accept both Canadian and U.S. dollars, but you should familiarize yourself with Canadian money. For tips on using debit or credit cards in Canada, click here.
- Canada adds a federal sales tax to all goods and services. The tax refund program for visitors to Canada was dropped in 2007, so you won't get them back.
- Read up on local laws and regulations about firearms.
- You should check with your existing health insurer to determine if your healthcare policy covers unexpected medical services you may require while visiting Canada. You can buy temporary travel health insurance policies to cover any unexpected health costs you may require while visiting Canada.