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Canada Visa – Application and Guidelines

Canada is a country in the North American continent located right above the United States and is known as a highly developed country. The demand for people to travel to Canada has been steadily increasing in the last few years, but most people wonder how they can get to Canada.

What is a Canada Visa?

A Canada Visa Application Process is a stamp on your passport which allows you to enter the country of Canada.

It is a permission for you to travel to the country and legally be able to stay either temporarily or permanently. Getting a visa to Canada means that the Canadian Consulate or Embassy in your home country decided that you are eligible and fulfill the requirements for entry. However, once you are at the Canadian border and customs, it is up to the officers at the border to evaluate whether you are fit to enter.

If you answer the Canadian Border Services Officer (BSO) questions honestly and correctly, they will allow you to enter. Otherwise, if they suspect that you are not eligible to enter, they can deny you and ask you to go back to your home country even if you have a Canada visa.

Who Needs a Canadian Visa?

People from countries that do not have a visa exemption or Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) agreement with Canada will need a visa to enter the country. More specifically, people from around 148 countries need a visa to visit, work, or immigrate to Canada.

If you are one of these applicants and you need a visa for Canada, you must apply for one. Depending on the type of visa you want, you will have a method of applying, but there are a few general steps you must take.

What are the Canada Visa Types?

Before you apply for a Canadian visa, you must first know which visa you want to apply for. Here are the types of Canada visas:

  • Visitor visas.
  • Student visas.
  • Work visas.
  • Permanent Residence visas.
  • Business Immigrant visas.
  • Express Entry Program visas.

You must pick the one that fits the motive of why you want to go to Canada.

Temporary Canada Visas

The temporary Canada visas allow the person to stay in Canada for a specific period of time which is determined by the Canadian Consulate or the Border Services Officers (BSO). This time is usually up to 6 months. However, the temporary visa can be single entry or multiple entry visa.

Single entry visa allows the person to only enter Canada once, stay for 6 months and then return to their home country. A multiple entry visa allows the person to enter Canada multiple times until their visa expires and stay temporarily.

Here are the types of Canadian Temporary Visas:

  • Canada Tourist Visa. The  Visitor Visa or the Tourist visa allows the holder to enter Canada for the purposes of tourism in the country.
  • Canada Super Visa. The Canadian Super Visa allows parents or grandparents of Canadian citizens or Canadian Permanent Residents to visit their children or grandchildren for an extended stay.
  • Diplomatic and Official Visa. The Diplomatic and Official visa gives permission to officials and diplomats from foreign countries to enter Canada for official duties and purposes.
  • Courtesy Visa. The Courtesy visa is given to all those people who do not qualify for a Diplomatic and Official Visa but are considered of importance due to their ranks and positions. This includes for example, members of trade missions or diplomats with touristic intent.
  • Canada Business Visa. The Business Visa is given to those who are travelling to Canada with business purposes as individuals or as a group of business people.
  • Visa to Give Birth in Canada. This visa is given to people who fulfill all the criteria to stay temporarily in Canada and who are pregnant and want to give birth in the country. Giving birth in Canada makes the baby automatically a Canadian citizen.
  • Intending Organ Donors Visa. This visa is given to a person who is traveling to Canada with the purpose of donating an organ to a Canadian citizen or Permanent Resident.
  • Canada Facilitation Visa. Facilitation Visas are given to Canadian citizens with dual nationalities who do not have a Canadian passport but have a passport of another nationality. The facilitation visa is stamped on the person’s other nationality visa due to extreme hardships of the person getting a Canadian passport.
  • Canada Student Visa. A Canadian student visa is given to those who have an admission from a Canadian university to complete their studies. If you are going to Canada to study for less than 6 months, then you can only get a TRV visa, but for more than 6 months of studies, you will need a Student Visa.
  • Canada Temporary Work Visa. Canada temporary work visas are given to those people who have a job offer in Canada and will work for up to 6 months. To get this visa, the person must present a valid job offer letter from an employer and qualify for a temporary visa.
  • Temporary Residence Permit. This permit is for people who need to go to Canada for different purposes but are otherwise not admissible for a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV). This permit is issued only for the length of time that the person needs to be in Canada, for example 2 weeks for a workshop.
  • Working Holiday Visa. The Canada Working Holiday Visa is given to young people from 30 countries, so they can work in Canada and travel. It is a random selection visa which means that applicants will submit their applications and wait to be randomly selected to apply for the work permit.

Permanent Canada Visas

The permanent Canada visas are visas which allow the holder to permanently settle in the country. These are otherwise known as immigrant visas and can be of different types, as follows:

  • Immigrant Investor Program. The Immigrant Investor Program is for people who will make investments in the Canadian economy and have a net worth of at least CAD$800,000. They must invest at least CAD$400,000 and the government will return this investment to them in 5 years without any interest.
  • Startup Visa Program. The Canada Startup Visa is for people who will be individually involved in contributing to the economy. They must have a net worth of at least CAD$300,000 and must commit to owning and managing at least one third of a Canadian business as well as create and maintain employment within 3 years of being in the country.
  • Self-employed Persons Visa. The Self-employed Persons visa is for people who have skills in business, athletics, culture, or farming and can start their own businesses. These people must demonstrate how they will finance the business as well as their skills in those particular areas
  • Quebec-Selected Skilled Worker Program (QSWP). If you have one of the occupations which are required in the Canadian province of Quebec and you are fluent in French, then you can apply for the Quebec Skilled Worker Program which will allow you to move and work permanently there.
  • Family-Sponsorship Program. The Family Sponsorship Visa allows the spouses and dependent children of Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents to immigrate to Canada permanently.
  • Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP). This visa is given to caregivers who are qualified to take care for elderly, disabled people, or children and live in a private home in Canada.

Express Entry Visas

The Canada Express Entry Program is an electronic immigration program designed by the Government of Canada. It allows people from all over the world to apply for immigration to Canada based on their specific skills.

The following are part of this program:

  • Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
  • Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
  • Provincial Nomination Programs (PNP)
  • Canadian Experience Class
Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)

The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) visa is given to people who are qualified tradespeople in occupations such as:

  • Carpenters
  • Aircraft Mechanics
  • Crane Operators
  • Heavy-duty Equipment Mechanics
  • Electricians
  • Machinists
  • Ironworkers
  • Welders
  • Plumbers, etc.
Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)

The visa under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) is given to people who have professions which are required in Canada. You must check what kind of occupations Canada Visa for Belgian Citizens needs at the point you are planning to apply and obtain the necessary points.

Provincial Nomination Programs (PNP)

This visa under the Provincial Nominee Program is given to semi or low-skilled workers who can contribute to the Canadian economy though their work. The workers are placed in different provinces of Canada where the demand for their work is higher.

Canadian Experience Class

The Canadian Experience Class permanent visa is given to those who have a temporary student visa or a temporary workers visa and want to switch to a permanent resident status. They either have a Canadian education or work experience and have settled into Canadian society.

Canada Visa Application

The Canada visa application process depends mostly on the visa type you need to apply for.

To apply for a Canada visa, you need to go through these simple steps:

  1. Find out if you are eligible for a Canada visa.
  2. Create your online account.
  3. Compile the document file.
  4. Pay the fees.
  5. Wait for processing of your Canadian visa.
  6. Submit your passport and processing fees.

Find out if you are eligible for a Canada visa

To find out how to get a Canadian visa, the Canadian government has made it quite easy. They have created different tests that evaluate the eligibility of applicants by asking them to fill out an online questionnaire. Depending on the type of visa you want, you will be asked to answer several questions, and the system will then let you know whether you can apply or not. Additionally, it will also send you the relevant instructions and steps you must take to fulfill all the requirements.

How to navigate through the Canadian government website?

To be able to access these questionnaires and find out if you are eligible for the Canada visa, you must go to their website here. The website will show you different information and different tabs that you can select, but you must go to the Immigration tab.

When you hover or click on the Immigration tab, it will show you a drop-down list of options. The first one will be My Application, and then there will be tabs for Visit, Immigrate, Work, Study, and others. You must select the one that corresponds with the visa you want to apply for. As a continuation of the example we showed above, if you want to get a tourist visa, you must click on the Visit tab.

After you click on the tab that matches the reason you want to visit Canada and the visa you want to apply for, you will see more information there. Whichever tab you have clicked, one of the links will say “Find out if you can apply” or “Find out if you are eligible”. You must click on this link.

The link will take you to the questionnaire where you will have to answer several questions. They will range from your personal information to reasons why you want to visit Canada, and previous travel history. At the end of the questionnaire, the system will show you the results.

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