Canada Visa For Indians - Definitive Guide

Known to have the friendliest people on the planet, and the most educated country in the world, Canada is quite a remarkable place. Covering over 9 million square kilometers, Canada is the world’s second largest country. Whatever the purpose of your visit, as an Indian citizen, you need a Canada visa to enter the country.

What is a Canada Visa?

A Canada visa is a permit that allows you to visit Canada, and stay there for a certain period. There are a few countries which do not need a permit to enter the country. However, for Indian nationals, a visa is necessary. The Canadian visas are of multiple types depending on the type of stay, number of entries, and the purpose of the visit. Even though the normal visa is issued for 6 months, the actual length can vary based on the Canadian Border Security Office decision.


How to apply for a Canada visa?

To apply for a Canada visa from India, you have to follow a few steps. However, before starting your application, there are a few prerequisites. The first one is for you to determine which type of visa you need. There are several Canada visa types ranging from a visitor, work, student visa, etc. After this, you need to determine if you are eligible for that particular type. This can be done by answering a questionnaire on the Government of Canada website. Once you are eligible, you can choose to apply for the Canada visa online, or on paper.

The offline process can be done by

  • Downloading an application form.
  • Filling the necessary details, as per the requirements.
  • Attaching the mandatory documents.
  • Paying the application fees, along with biometric charges.
  • Biometric is mandatory at VAC.
  • Sending the application via mail or in person to a VAC.

The Canadian government is in the phase of digitizing records, and as a result, people are requested to make their Canada visa application online for the process. To find out how to apply for a Canada visa online, you can follow the following steps -

  • You will have to create an account at the Government of Canada website. You can also use your bank account details to create one.
  • Once this is done, you can log in to the account and start filling out your Canada visa application form.
  • You should then upload your documents as asked.
  • Pay the application fees as well as the biometric fees and submit the Canada visa online application.

Be it online or offline, after you submit your application, you will have to wait for the embassy to approve it. In the meanwhile, you will also be asked to submit your biometric information. You can provide this at a visa application center, or at other referred biometric collection centers. Alternately, you might have to submit to an interview at the VAC.

Whatever the process you follow, you have to ensure that all the details are correct, and the necessary documents have been submitted as you do not want your application to be rejected. A rejected visa history may cause hindrances in future visa applications.

Canada visa types

Canadian visas can be categorized into Temporary, and Permanent Visa. The temporary resident Canada visa types can be mainly classified into the following -

  1. Visitor visa / Temporary resident visa (TRV) - Anyone who is visiting the country for tourism, family or business related purposes are granted temporary resident status. These are issued normally for 6 months. They are of two types-
  • Canada Tourist Visa - This type is required by an individual whose sole purpose of the visit is tourism. Be it visiting family members/friends, or to explore the country, or any other tourist activities, you require a tourist visa.
  • Canada Business Visa - If you are planning to visit Canada to implement or expand a business, to attend business meetings/conferences, to venture possible business plans, as long as your main agenda is professional activities, you require a business visa.
  • Work visa - This is a temporary type that permits an individual to work for 6 months in Canada, after which he will have to return home or apply for an extension.
  • Study visa - For students attending courses in Canada that last more than 6 months, a study visa is issued.

  • Usually, these are issued for multiple entries. Meaning, you can go in and out of the country multiple times in the visa period. Also, most temporary visas are issued for 6 months. However, depending on how strong your case is, the visa officer may issue permits valid up to a maximum of 10 years; or until the passport validity date, whichever comes first.

    Documents required for Canada visa

    The documents to be submitted for the application depends on the Canada visa types you are aiming for. There are a constant set of documents that are common for all visas, and a special set depending on the type. The general documents required for Canadian visa are as follows,

    • A valid passport + old passports, if any.
    • 3 photos as per Canada visa requirements.
    • Duly filled and signed application forms.
    • NOC from employer/leave sanction from school/college. 0
    • Travel itinerary - confirmed air tickets, proof of accommodation.
    • Proof of financial means - bank statements, Form -16, passbook, salary slips, etc.
    • Proof that you will return to your home country once the Canadian visa expires.
    • Identity and Civil Status Documents.
    • Police clearances to show no criminal records (if requested).
    • Medical certificate to prove that you have no chronic disease (if requested).
    • A covering letter stating your purpose, motive, and duration of the travel.
    • Letter of support/invitation to Canada.

    Canada Visa Photo Specifications

    The Canada visa photo specifications are as follows -

    • Size: 33mm width and 48mm length.
    • Colour: Must be submitted in colour showing true skin tones.
    • Head size and position: The head must be between 15mm and 22mm wide. Length is 28mm to 33mm. x
    • Recency: Photo must be from the past 6 months. Older photos will be rejected.
    • Background: Solid, plain white or light blue only.
    • Smile: Neutral expression. No smiling
    • Eyes: Wide open. Must be visible
    • Make sure your ears are both visible.
    • The photo should not be blurry.
    • Glasses: Thin rimmed eyewear for medical purpose only.
    • Headgear: None unless for religious purposes.
    • Dimensions and size (pixels): None specified.
    • Attire, clothing, dress code: Be sure what you are wearing does not match the background. This could cause rejection and retake.
    • Beard: Optional.
    • Quantity needed in application: 2

    Canada visa processing time

    The processing time depends on several factors. The time taken for your visa to be processed after submission can vary based on missing documents, wrong application form, biometric and interview appointments, and various other things. For a good application, the Canada visa stamping processing time is around 10-15 days. However, this can go up to more than 30 days in certain scenarios. It also depends on how early you submit your biometrics as well. It is advised to apply well in advance.

    Canada Visa Fees

    The costs for a visa depends on the country of application, mode of application, the number of entries, length of stay, as well as the urgency. The Canada visa fees again depend on the type of Canada visa you have opted for. Apart from the processing fees, there are charges for the biometric submission as well as any other service charges, if you chose to apply at a VAC.

    Entry Purpose Stay Duration Validity Fees
    Multiple entry Normal Business 6 months 12 months 10250.0
    Multiple entry Normal Study 6 months 12 months 10250.0
    Multiple entry Normal Tourist 6 months 12 months 10250.0

    Canada visa status check online India

    The status of your visa processing will be emailed to you along the way. Alternately, if you wish to track them yourself, you can use your passport number and last name to check it through the VAC, or you can also email the embassy you have applied to.

    Where to apply for a Canada visa?

    The applications can be submitted in multiple ways as per your convenience. For submitting the Canada visa online, you can use the Government of Canada website, as well as pay the Canada visa fees there. If you are applying on paper, you will have to do all the procedures at the embassy or a VAC. However, to submit your biometrics, you will have to go to a biometric collection service point near you, or at the nearest VAC. Visa application centers are set up all across India. The Canadian embassy is situated in New Delhi. And the Consulate Generals of Canada are located in Bangalore, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Chandigarh.


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