Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

To enter Canada as an international student in addition to study permit, you need to have either a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV or Visa) or an electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)* depending on your country of citizenship.

Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

An eTA is a number issued by CIC or visa office and is linked to the passport you use to apply for it. Foreign nationals (including international students, foreign workers and visitors) from visa-exempt countries are required to have an eTA before traveling to Canada.

What You Need to Know - Electronic Travel Authorization

Do I need an eTA

To find out if you require an eTA please visit the CIC website.

Exceptions include US Citizens and foreign nationals with a valid Temporary Resident Visa (Visa).

Since August 2015, students from Visa-exempt countries who apply for their Study Permits from their home country are automatically issued an eTA. They don’t have to apply for an eTA separately.

eTA is different from a study permit. A study permit is required to stay in Canada as a student while an eTA is used to enter or re-enter Canada. An eTA will be valid for up to five years or until your passport expires (whichever comes first).

If you get a new passport, you need to get a new eTA.

Applying for an eTA

To apply for eTA online, you must have a valid passport, a credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or a pre-paid Visa, MasterCard or American Express), and email address. It costs $7 CAD to get an eTA. It is a simple online form, takes a few minutes to complete and you will receive you eTA confirmation usually within minutes.

An eTA is usually valid for up to five years or until the passport expires, whichever comes first.  If you get a new passport, you need to get a new eTA.

What Happens Next

After you submit your application, you should get an email that indicates one of the following:

  • Confirmation of receipt/pending: your application has been received and a review is currently underway. In this case you can use the check your eTA status tool to follow the progress of your application.
  • Request for documents:  The email outlines instructions on how to submit the requested document(s) to complete the review of your application.
  • Approval: your eTA has been approved. The email will include your eTA number, expiration date, and passport number.

In most cases, applicants will receive a confirmation within minutes. However, some requests may need more time to process. If you have not received an email confirmation with an application number within 72 hours of applying, you will need to fill out the case-specific enquiry form.

Please make sure to check the junk mail folder of the email address you provided on your eTA application form, in case spam filters block automated CIC emails.

Do I have to print the approval email to prove that I have an eTA?

Although it is not required, we suggest you print the eTA approval email and have it with you when traveling. You have to travel with the passport you used to apply for your eTA.

Validity of eTA

An eTA is usually valid for up to five years or until the passport expires, whichever comes first.  If you get a new passport, you need to get a new eTA.

As of May 1, 2017 eligible applicants who renew their study permit or apply for a post-graduation work permit are also issued an eTA (if required), when CIC approves their study or work permit application.

You may check your eTA status tool to find out if you have a valid eTA.