News report | | 18/10/2023 | ±4 minutes reading time

If you are an adult travelling to Canada with (your) underage children, you will need several other documents in addition to a passport and a valid travel authorisation. Read this article to find out which ones.

Standard travel documents for Canada

Each travel needs a valid passport (which must stay valid throughout the stay), regardless of their age and the length of their stay in Canada. In addition to a valid passport, every traveller must hold a valid travel authorisation, such a visa or eTA Canada. British travellers visiting Canada for a holiday, business trip, transfer or short study programme (no longer than 6 months) can generally do so with an eTA.

An eTA is valid for 5 years and can be used for multiple trips during this period. The eTA is not suitable for those who wish to work in Canada for a Canadian employer, start their own business in the country or attend a course that lasts longer than 6 months in total. If you intend to stay in Canada longer than 6 consecutive months, or you do not meet the eTA requirements, then you need to apply for a visa via a Visa Application Centre (VAC). The eTA, on the other hand, is easy to apply for online.
Apply now for an eTA

Travel documents for travelling to Canada with children

If you’re travelling with children, depending on the situation, the border control might ask you to provide additional documents. Below are different scenarios and the additional documents that may be asked for in each situation. In any case, you and each of your children should have a valid passport and an eTA or visa. Also, in case of travelling with children, it is advisable to bring a copy of the birth certificate of the child or children.

Travelling with either parent

If only one parent is travelling to Canada with their child(ren), the border control may request other documents in addition to a copy of the birth certificate, depending on the situation:

One of the parents is deliberately not travelling
In this case, it might be necessary to provide a signed letter (in French or English) in which the parent not travelling with the child gives their permission for the trip. The letter should include the address and phone number of this parent. A copy of the non-travelling parent’s passport or ID must be attached to the letter.

One of the parents is defunct
In this case, a copy of the deceased parent’s death certificate may be requested.

The parents are divorced and only one parent has custody of the child
If the parent without custody is travelling with the child to Canada, they may be requested to provide a letter of authorisation, signed by the parents with custody, authorising the trip. If the parent with custody is travelling with the child to Canada, a copy of the custody documents may be requested.

The parents are divorced and both have custody of the child
In this case, it might be necessary to provide a copy of the custody documents. It is also advised to bring a letter o authorisation, in which the non-travelling parent authorises the trip to Canada.

Child travelling with adoptive parents or legal guardian

Legal guardians should bring a copy of the guardianship documents, while adoptive parents should bring a copy of the adoption papers. Again, if only one of the two guardians or adoptive parents is travelling to Canada with the child, it is advisable to bring a letter of authorisation signed by the other guardian or adoptive parent.

Other adults travelling to Canada with children

Adults travelling to Canada with one or more children who are not their own, such as grandparents or other relatives, must be able to show a letter of consent in which the parents or legal guardians give them permission to travel to Canada with the child. The consent letter must also state that the adults travelling with the child are responsible and liable for them during their stay in Canada. In addition, the consent letter must include the address of the parents or guardians and their telephone numbers. The traveller must also show a copy of the ID (passport or identity card) of all parents or guardians.

If you cannot show these documents, border control officials might not believe that you are entitled to travel to Canada with the child. In this case, you might even be detained for (suspicion of) kidnapping. Therefore, make sure you have all the documents that may be asked for. If you still have questions about the required documents or about the eTA Canada, check out the frequently asked questions about this travel authorisation.

e-Visa.co.uk is a commercial and professional visa agency, and supports travellers in obtaining, among others, the eTA Canada. e-Visa.co.uk acts as an intermediary and is in no way part of any government. You can also apply for an eTA directly with the immigration service (7 CAD per eTA, via onlineservices-servicesenligne.cic.gc.ca). However, not with our level of support. If you submit your application via e-Visa.co.uk, our support centre is available to you 24/7. We also check your application before submitting it to the immigration authorities on your behalf. If we suspect any errors or omissions while doing so, we will personally contact you to ensure that your application can still be processed quickly and correctly. To use our services, you pay us 7 CAD in consular fees, which we pay to the immigration service on your behalf, as well as £25.86 in service fees as compensation for our services, including VAT. Our services have saved many travellers from major problems during their trip. Should an application be rejected despite our support and verification, we will refund the full purchase price (unless an application for a previous eTA Canada was rejected for the same traveller). Read more about our services here.