Electronic travel authorization (eTA): After you apply


After you apply

We process your application

In most cases, you will receive an email from us within minutes. However, some requests may need several days to process. If this is the case for your application, you can expect an email from us within 72 hours of applying. This email will tell you what your next steps are.

Check the junk mail folder of the email address you provided on your eTA application form. Some spam filters may block automated emails from us.

You receive your eTA

You’ll be notified by email when your eTA is approved. The approval email includes your eTA number.

If you change your email address after you apply for an eTA, you must update your address online. You can do this with this web form.

Check your passport number

Image of approval letter and passport information page

Check that the passport number included in the eTA approval email matches exactly the number in your passport. If it's not the same, you need to apply again with the correct passport number.

If you entered the wrong passport number, you may not be able to board your flight to Canada.

  • You may only find out at the airport if you made a mistake.
  • You’ll have to reapply for an eTA.
  • Depending on your situation, it may not be possible to get an eTA at the last minute.

When you board your flight

Your eTA is linked to the passport you used to apply. You need to present this passport when you check-in to your flight to Canada. You don’t need to print out any special document.

The airline staff will scan your passport to confirm that you have a valid eTA. If you don’t have one, you won’t be able to board your flight.

Situations where you may need extra documents on arrival

If either of the following situations applies to you or someone you’ll travel with, have the documents indicated in hand.

You have a child under the age of 18 (a minor child)

In Canada, a child under the age of 18 is considered a minor.

You may need to show

  • a letter from one or both parents, or a legal guardian, that authorizes the minor child to travel to Canada, and
  • other documents, such as adoption papers or a custody decree, depending on if the minor child travels alone or not

Find out more about minor children travelling to Canada

You were invited to come to Canada

If you got a letter from a person or company that invited you to Canada, bring that letter with you. A border services officer may ask to see it.

Find out more about letters of invitation.

You arrive in Canada

A valid eTA and travel document don’t guarantee that you can enter Canada.

We determine if you meet all entry requirements

When you arrive, a border services officer will ask to see your passport and other travel documents. They’ll check your identity to make sure that you’re the same person who was approved to travel to Canada.

  • If you enter Canada at one of 10 major Canadian airports
    • Your fingerprints will be checked automatically at a primary inspection kiosk.
    • The system will check your identity against the information collected when your application was submitted.
  • If you enter Canada at smaller airports and all land ports of entry
    • Your fingerprints may be checked if we refer you to a secondary inspection, where a border services officer will use a fingerprint verification device to check your fingerprints.

You enter Canada

If you pass the identity check, health assessment, and meet the entry requirements, the border services officer may stamp your passport or let you know how long you can stay in Canada. You’re normally allowed to stay in Canada for up to 6 months.

In some cases, the officer may limit or extend your time in Canada to cover the planned purpose of your visit. Ask questions if you’re not sure about something.

You won’t be allowed into Canada if you give false or incomplete information. You must convince the officer that:

  • you’re eligible for entry into Canada
  • you’ll leave Canada at the end of your approved stay

If you don’t obey the conditions of your temporary resident status, we’ll ask you to leave Canada. Most people asked to leave Canada have the right to a fair hearing to review the decision.

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