Canada to require electronic authorisation before travel

In a move very similar to the USA’s ESTA programme, Canada has announced that from 1 August 2015, visitors from a large number of ‘friendly’ countries will be required to apply for, and pay for, permission to enter Canada. From 15 March, 2016 you won’t be able to board a plane to Canada without one.

Whilst, like the USA, Canada is charging for the service it is a little cheaper – CAD7 and lasts for 5 years – or until your passport expires whichever is the sooner.

I am lucky to have seen this as I am connecting back through Canada in the autumn to the UK from Tampa.

US Citizens do not need one.

Acquiring an eTA apparently gives travellers confidence that they have been pre-screened to come to Canada and will streamline their entry.

There is a fun little video here, which explains more.

Applications are not currently available it seems.

This is a list of who needs an eTA.

Foreign nationals from the following countries will need an eTA before boarding flights to Canada as of March 15, 2016:

  • Andorra
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • British citizen
  • British overseas citizen who is re-admissible to the United Kingdom
  • British overseas territory citizen who derives that citizenship through birth, descent, naturalization or registration in one of the British overseas territories of:
    • Anguilla
    • Bermuda
    • British Virgin Islands
    • Cayman Islands
    • Falkland Islands
    • Gibraltar
    • Montserrat
    • Pitcairn Island
    • Saint Helena
    • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Chile
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Federal Republic of Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Republic of Korea
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Norway
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Samoa
  • San Marino
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland

eTA required – foreign nationals with specific documents

The following foreign nationals will need an eTA before boarding flights to Canada as of March 15, 2016:

  • Persons who have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence (United States Permanent Residents).
  • Holder of a passport or travel document issued by the Holy See.
  • Holder of a national Israeli passport.
  • Holder of a passport issued by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China.
  • Holder of a passport issued by the United Kingdom to a British National (Overseas), as a person born, naturalized or registered in Hong Kong.
  • Holder of a passport issued by the United Kingdom to a British Subject which contains the observation that the holder has the right of abode in the United Kingdom.
  • Holder of an ordinary passport issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Taiwan that includes the personal identification number of the individual.