A new move by the Government of Canada makes it compulsory for Canadian expats to carry Canadian passport. Without a passport of their home country, they will not be allowed entry into Canadian borders. Being recognized as the citizen of two countries is known as being a dual citizen.
The citizens of Canada have been enabled by their constitution to take up foreign nationality while retaining their Canadian one. The people who select to gain a foreign nationality and are living outside the Canadian borders are known as Canadian expatriate. These expats had no obligation of carrying their passports but all of this has changed with the advent of a new system, Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).
A spokesperson from Immigration and Citizenship Canada stated, ‘The Government of Canada is implementing a new electronic system to assist airlines in verifying that all travelers have the appropriate documents to travel to or transit through Canada by air,’
This will also make it obligatory for the airlines to check that each passenger heading to Canada has the appropriate documents required to enter the confines of that country. The spokesperson also added, ‘Every Canadian citizen has the right to enter Canada and is not subject to immigration screening. Travelling with a valid Canadian passport proves that you are a citizen. If you don’t have a valid travel document that proves your Canadian citizenship at check-in, you may not be able to board your flight. People need to be prepared and should renew or apply for a Canadian passport as soon as possible,’ the spokesman added.
A passport is a universal proof of nationality. This particular document will give you the right to enter Canada even when you are an expat. This new system will be made mandatory and no leniency will be shown to the expats after 30 September 2016. You should consider applying for a temporary passport or emergency travel document if your passport has expired.
Of you do not have a Canadian passport or have lost one for more than a year then you should consider applying for a new passport. To apply for this particular document you need to be:
- a Canadian Citizen
- Above the age of 16.
To apply for passport for kids under the age of 16 you must provide documented proof that you are the legal guardian or custodian parent of the child.
To get your passport renewed, you must meet the following criteria’s:
- Must have been 16 or over at the time passport was issued.
- Your passport must not have expired for more than a year.
- Must not change the essential information like name, sex, date and place of birth.
- Your passport must never have been reported stolen.
- Passport must not be damaged
To renew your passport, you can apply through mail. You need to apply in person to renew your passport within 20 days. You will be required to fill in an application form and submit it in person or by mail.
You need to attach 2 identical passport photos and the most recent passport that you want to get renewed. Two references, who have known you for more than 2 years need to include in the renewal application. The references must not have been your guarantor or a family member and must be 18 years of age or above.
You can make your payment online through credit or debit cards and offline through money orders. These passport offices do not accept cash or personal check. You will receive your renewed passport through mail if you would have signed up for a pickup service.
The eTA can be applied for online and is processed and granted within a few minutes. Sometimes it can take up to a few days due to some discrepancy in the information provided by the applicant. The eTA is not only useful for Canadian expats but also for people from visa exempt countries. You should apply for an eTA at least a week before you need to fly to Canada.