Before your trip, make sure you have the right travel documents for entering Canada. You’ll need a valid passport, and in some cases, a visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization which you can apply for online.
Electronic Travel Authorizations (eTA) or Visitor Visa:
As of March 15, 2016, visa-exempt foreign nationals are expected to have an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to fly to or transit through Canada. Exceptions include U.S. citizens and travelers with a valid Canadian visa. Canadian citizens, including dual citizens, and Canadian permanent residents are not eligible to apply for an eTA. U.S. Permanent Residents possessing a Green Card or valid permit to re-enter the United States require an eTA. You may need an eTA before you board your flight to Canada, even if you are just transiting through the country. Once the application process is complete, most applications are approved within minutes of submission. If you do not receive immediate approval, you will receive an email from the CIC with instructions for completing your application. The authorization is electronically linked to your passport and is valid for five years or until your passport expires, whichever comes first. To find out if you need an eTA to travel to Canada, please visit: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/visas.asp
eTA Application Process
To apply for an eTA please visit: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta-start.asp. To apply you will need a valid passport from a visa-exempt country. You cannot apply using a Refugee Travel Document. U.S. permanent residents can apply with a valid Green Card, U.S. Refugee Travel Document or a valid permit to re-enter the United States. They will also require a passport from their country of nationality.
Citizens of the following countries require a visitor visa to travel to Canada:
Afghanistan, Argentina, Brazil, China, Columbia, Egypt, India, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Turkey, Ukraine, and United Arab Emirates. Citizens of Taiwan are required to hold a passport with a national identification number. If you are a citizen of the Republic of China and do not hold a passport with a national identification number, you will require a visa.
Visitor Visa Application Process
To apply for a visitor visa, please visit: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/offices/vac.asp
If you are required to travel with an eTA or visitor visa you should:
• Get it when you plan your trip – do not wait for the last minute to apply in the event there is a delay (see Travel documents), and travel to Canada with the passport you used to get your eTA or visa.
• Travelers with passports from visa-required countries and territories need a visitor visa (temporary resident visa) to enter Canada.
If you are a permanent resident of Canada and a citizen of a visa-exempt country or a citizen of a visa-required country, you need to travel with your Canadian permanent resident (PR) card or permanent resident travel document when flying to Canada. Otherwise, you may not be able to board your flight to Canada. If you require a business travel letter, please email the Psychonomic Society’s headquarters immediately at email@example.com.
Are you admissible into Canada?
To consider your admissibility to Canada, Canadian officials assess your crime according to Canadian laws. They look at the nature of the offence, how long ago the act took place and whether any sentences were imposed. A misdemeanor offence in the United States is not automatically considered an equivalent offence in Canada. The final decision about your admissibility rests with the immigration or border services officer. Normally you cannot enter or stay in Canada if you are inadmissible. However, there are ways of overcoming your criminal inadmissibility.
If you are inadmissible, you may become admissible again if you:
- satisfy an immigration or border services officer that you meet the legal requirements to be deemed rehabilitated;
- apply for individual rehabilitation and get approved; or
- receive a pardon or record suspension.
You may also be offered a temporary resident permit if:
- your reason to travel to Canada is considered justified in the circumstances; and
- you do not pose a risk because of your inadmissibility.
Visits considered justified could include family emergencies or business conferences. Pleasure trips are normally not considered justified in the circumstances.
Temperatures cool down in Vancouver over the fall months of September, October and November, and things get a little rainy as well. But overall, the climate is quite mild, with temperatures ranging from a sunny 18˚C (65˚F) on a sunny September day, through to a rainy 9˚C (48˚F) in later months. Check Vancouver’s current and historical weather conditions online here.
What To Wear
Plan on dressing in light layers, and pack a rain jacket and an umbrella for wet days. If you’re thinking about heading up to the local mountains, make sure you bring a warmer layer as well as gloves, scarf and a hat. Bring some good walking shoes – Vancouver is a great place to explore on foot!
- You’ll most likely be flying into Vancouver International Airport, and you’ll find that the easiest way to get to downtown is by hopping on the Canada Line light-rail service – just look for the “Trains to the City” signs! The 30-minute trip is CAD $9, and tickets can be purchased by credit card on the platform. Alternatively, taxis are available and charge a flat fee from $31 - $35 for downtown zones.
- Once you’re downtown, walking is often the best option in our compact, very walkable city. Most hotels are within a 10-minute stroll of the Vancouver Convention Centre, and you can easily walk to many downtown attractions including those in Gastown, Stanley Park and Robson Street. Just ask your concierge for a map (and possibly an umbrella!)
- Taxis are plentiful; you can ask your bell desk to call one for you, or hail one on the street. Or try a service like Ripe Rides for on-call luxury sedans.
The travel information above was provided by the Metro Vancouver Convention and Visitor's Bureau.