Can I Travel to Canada with a Green Card?

Yes, you can travel to Canada with a US Green Card. However, you need to obtain an eTA in order to fly or transit through a Canadian airport. If you are entering the Canadian borders via bus, train, car or ship, you don’t require an eTA. You simply need to carry your valid Green Card or Alien Documentation Identification System (ADIT) Stamp.

What is an eTA?

An Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) is a necessary entry requirement for citizens of all nationalities that fall under the Canadian visa exemption program. It is electronically linked to the visitor’s passport and helps the authorities obtain all details of travellers. An eTA is valid up to 5 years and you need to apply for a new eTA if you are getting a new passport.

A valid eTA allows you to stay in Canada for short periods of time, of a maximum of up to six months. However, travellers must remember that having an eTA doesn’t guarantee entry into Canada. You need to show your passport and other travel documents and convince the border service officer of your eligibility to enter the borders of Canada. The cost of an eTA is CAD$7, subject to change. Remember that you can only apply for and pay the eTA fee for one individual at a time.

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Eligibility Criteria for an eTA

Canadian eTAs are not issued to every traveller. You need to qualify certain eligibility criteria in order to obtain the eTA. The three major requirements for a Canadian eTA are:

A Valid Passport

In order to apply for an eTA, you need to possess a valid passport from a visa exempt nation.  You will need to enter your passport number in the eTA application form. You can check further details about the Canadian eTA on the official website. In most cases, an eTA is issued within 15-20 minutes. However, there are times when it could take several weeks, due to the submission of insufficient documents or incomplete form.

A Valid Email Id

An eTA application is a simple online process and you can actually get your Canadian eTA in minutes. During the entire process, the guidelines related to tb eTA will be communicated to you via email. For example, you will receive a confirmation notification once your request for an eTA is submitted. So, it is important to have a valid email address in order to apply for an eTA.

A Valid Credit or Debit Card

Once you have filled the application form accurately, you need to submit the application fee. This fee is non-refundable and can be paid using a debit or credit card. Once you fulfil all the requirements for eTA application, you can get your eTA for 5 years.

Remember, you might not be eligible for an eTA, based on your nationality, or you might not even need one. For instance, if you are a US citizen or Green Card holder, you neither need an eTA nor a visa to enter the country. You simply need to have a valid passport and identification documents, provided you have no criminal record.

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Mani Karthik

About the Author

Mani Karthik

Ex “NRI” and Founder of the “Back to India” movement. I share my experience about immigrating to USA here.