News report | | 11/06/2021 | ±4 minutes reading time

Canada is a great place to do business. But what do you need to consider before you leave for Canada on a business trip? This article provides information regarding business travel to Canada. Those flying to Canada for business do not always require a specific work visa. In most cases, an eTA Canada that you can apply for online is sufficient.

Doing business in Canada

In Canada, meetings with business partners are often scheduled in the mornings. Be sure to arrive at least 15 minutes before the meeting. Canadians are punctual and expect the same from their business partners. It is common practice in Canada to address each other by your first name.

In Canada, as in any country, it is appreciated if a person has put some effort into preparing for the meeting. Canadian business partners are often very direct and like to get to the point quickly. You can invite your business partners to lunch for a follow-up meeting. Business lunches with Canadians are often short and sweet, and no alcohol is consumed.

Applying for the eTA Canada

The eTA Canada can be used, among other things, to visit a business partner or to attend business meetings, trade fairs or tours, as well as to pursue work-related education or training. In many cases, a specific work visa is not required for a business trip in Canada. The advantages of an eTA over a Canada visa are that the eTA is easier and faster to apply for than a visa, and the eTA is also cheaper. Since the eTA Canada can be applied for online, there is no need to visit a Visa Application Centre (VAC).

The eTA Canada is valid for five years. Once approved, the eTA is digitally linked to the passport number of the passport that was used to apply for the travel authorisation. This means that the eTA Canada loses its validity when the passport expires, even if the eTA has not yet expired. If your passport is not valid for long enough, you must first apply for a new passport and then use this new passport to apply for an eTA. As the travel authorisation is linked to your passport number, it is often sufficient to show your passport on arrival in Canada.

Working for a Canadian employer requires a visa

Canada offers an excellent quality of life, and it is therefore not surprising that thousands of people travel to Canada every year to live and work there.

A job application in Canada usually consists of sending a curriculum vitae (CV) and a motivation letter. Diplomas and certificates are often only required upon request. Great value is placed on personal references. The documents sent by applicants are anonymised: an applicantʼs age, nationality and marital status may not be disclosed in advance and no photograph is required on an application letter.

The eTA Canada is suitable for a holiday, study, transfer or business trip in Canada, but is not sufficient for business trips longer than six months or to work for a Canadian employer. In those cases, a work permit or Canada visa is required. These documents can be applied for online, but the application always requires a visit to a Visa Application Centre for the collection of biometric data.

Requirements of the eTA Canada

Before applying for a visa or eTA, it is important to ensure that you meet all the requirements attached to the eTA or visa.

After submitting your eTA application, it is processed and reviewed by the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada). On arrival in Canada, you may be selected for a random check in which a member of the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) will verify that you meet all the eTA Canada requirements.

In addition to the general requirements of the eTA, there are additional requirements for those who wish to use the eTA to work in Canada, which you and your travel plans must meet. It is also advised bringing a letter of invitation from your business partner that describes your personal details, your accommodation address, details of your employer and the company you will be visiting, and the business relationship between you and your business partner. It is also advised asking your employer for a statement explaining the reason and purpose of the business trip and to ask your business partner to be available by telephone at the time of arrival.