From 6th February 2014, visitors to Canada will be automatically considered for multiple-entry visas (Temporary Resident Visas – TRV.) These visas allow qualified visitors to enter and exit Canada for six months at a time for up to 10 years, and were originally introduced in 2011.
Temporary Resident Visas were originally intended to assist business visitors and tourists in order to grow Canadian economy. However, this type of visa will now be the standard type of Visitor Visa issued to genuine and qualifying visitors. This will make the issuance of a visitor”s visa more efficient for applicants and better use of government resources.
Every year more than 35 million people visit Canada and citizens of certain countries require a visa to visit. The ten-year visa will automatically be an option available to citizens of visa required countries, who are considered to be low-risk travelers. Visitors from countries such as the Philippines and Brazil, who hold five-year passports, have been issued multiple-entry visas for up to five years. However, increasingly, countries are issuing passports which are valid for ten years, such as nationals of China, India and Mexico.
In light of this, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is changing its policy for visitor visa issuance. Applicants who apply for multiple-entry visas, will now be automatically considered for visas issued to the maximum validity allowed of 10 years, according to the length of their passport validity (so for 10 year passports; up to 10 years, minus 1 month).
Chris Alexander, Canada”s Citizenship and Immigration Minister stated that, “as part of our plan to grow the Canadian economy and create jobs, our government is committed to attracting more visitors and business people to our country. By making the multiple-entry visa the standard visitor visa, we are evolving to meet the needs of international travelers who are looking for flexible, fast and convenient options to come to Canada.”
This year, the fees have also been amended. The fee for the temporary resident visa (TRV) program will now be reduced from $150 to $100 for the processing of either a single- or multiple-entry visa. This is intended to make the visa application process easier and will promote tourism and trade by increasing the number of eligible travelers who are able to make multiple visits to Canada.
Minister Kenney from CIC has stated that; “the government is committed to attracting an increasing number of visitors to Canada as part of our plan to grow the Canadian economy and create jobs. We strive to issue visas as quickly as possible to facilitate travel for genuine visitors – to welcome tourists, to reunite families – and benefit from the economic spinoff they bring to Canada.”
Should you have any queries concerning Canadian immigration, please feel free to contact us.