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How to get a visa for Canada from UK: Complete guide

by Juan José Herranz | August 10, 2020
Royal Canadian Mounted Police

The eTA Canada (Electronic Travel Authorization) is a requirement for entry to Canada introduced in 2016 for foreigners travelling by air to the country. The eTA is not a physical document as visas for other countries can be, but is electronically linked to the user's passport. By presenting your passport to the authorities, they will see if you already have the eTA approved.

This entry requirement is valid for five years from the time it is approved or until the passport expires. It allows you to travel to Canada as many times as you like, assuming the length of stay does not exceed six months per visit.

Several countries, including the United Kingdom, do not require a visa to enter Canada and are therefore eligible to apply for an eTA Canada. Here are the essentials that you need to know.

Do I need a visa for Canada from UK?

You won't need a visa, but you will need an eTA for Canada. The eTA Canada is an Electronic Travel Authorization that gives you permission to enter Canada, if you travel from the UK. The eTA is valid for five years. For more information, you can read our article How to get a visa for Canada.

How do I apply for a Canada visa from UK?

UK citizens don't need a visa for Canada, they can apply online for the eTA Canada. This saves time, as you won't have to deal with the embassy. The whole process is approved in less than 24 hours, if everything is correct. It is worthy of adding that with the eTA you can make transit flights in Canada without the need for a visa.

visa for Canada from UK to visit the Manitoba Legislative Building

Visa requirements for Canada visa for UK citizens

In addition to obtaining the eTA, you must comply with a series of Canada entry requirements to be allowed to enter Canada. These may vary according to your case.

In every situation, you will need to present your passport with a validity that covers your stay in Canada and at least six months from your date of entry. If your passport expires, your eTA will no longer be valid and you will need to apply for a new one. The eTA is directly linked to your passport, so there is no need to present any kind of proof at the airport, as the authorities will check on the computer that you have all the documents in order. However, we will provide you with a document with additional information and your reference number to avoid any inconvenience when entering Canada.

If your reasons for travelling are for work or study, we recommend that you check the entry requirements with the Canadian High Commission. Depending on your case, you will need to bring your fingerprints and biometric data to the visa application centre, as an eTA is only valid for tourism or transit purposes.

Upon arrival in Canada, you may need to show that you have enough funds to support yourself during your stay.

Please note that even if your children are minors, if they are UK citizens, they are eligible for the eTA system. If you are travelling with children and only one parent is present, you should carry a letter of consent from the non-travelling parent. Alternatively, you can travel with the legal document granting you sole custody or the death certificate of the other parent.

There are times when having a criminal record or having been arrested, regardless of conviction, may result in refusal of eTA or entry to Canada. For this reason, we recommend that you contact the Canadian High Commission before travel to avoid any inconvenience when you arrive in the country and to resolve matters beforehand.

visa for Canada from UK Sunset over Canadian city

Is it possible to travel to Canada from the UK without a visa?

UK citizens must complete the online eTA application form and have available:

  • A passport that is valid for at least six months from the date they intend to enter Canada
  • An email where we will notify you that your eTA has been approved
  • Credit or debit card to pay for the application.

The application should not take more than five minutes to complete, where you will fill questions about your name, nationality, passport details, etc. So, we recommend that you take special care and check the information you enter several times. In case you mistype information that does not exactly match your real data, the eTA will be invalid.

Once this process is complete, during the following 24 hours you will receive a document in which you will see that your eTA application has been approved and that it is linked to your passport directly.

How much does the Canada eTA cost for UK citizens?

The eTA can only be applied for online and it costs GBP 36, which includes processing fees and government fees.

One of the advantages of applying for the eTA is that you will save unnecessary queuing at the embassy or consulate and you will not need to attach any documentation.

Where is the Canadian Embassy in the United Kingdom?

High Commission of Canada in London

Address: Canada House, Trafalgar Square, London SW1Y 5BJ

Phone: +44 20 7004 6000

Fax: +44 20 7004 6053

Email: [email protected] 

Canada Consulate in Cardiff

Address: St John Cymru Wales, Beignon Close, Ocean Way, CF24 5PB, Cardiff

Phone: +44 292 044 9635

Fax: +44 292 044 9645

Email: [email protected] 

Where is the British Embassy in Canada?

United Kingdom High Commission in Ottawa

Address: 80 Elgin Street, K1P 5K7, Ottawa

Phone: +1 613 2371530

Fax: +1 613 2377980

Email: [email protected] 

United Kingdom Consulate in Ontario

Address: 777 Bay Street, Suite 2800, M5G 2G2, Toronto, Ontario

Phone: +1 416 5931290

Fax: +1 416 5931229

Email: [email protected] 

United Kingdom Consulate in Alberta

Address: 3000-150 6 Ave SW, T2P 3Y7, Calgary, Alberta

Phone: +1 403 705 1755

Fax: +1 403 538 0121

Email: [email protected] / [email protected] 

United Kingdom Consulate in Quebec

Address: 2000 McGill College Avenue, Suite 1940, H3A 3H3, Montreal, Quebec

Phone: +1 514 8665863

Fax: +1 514 8660202

Email: [email protected] / [email protected] 

United Kingdom Consulate in British Columbia

Address: Suite 800, 1111 Melville Street, V6E 3V6, Vancouver, British Columbia

Phone: +1 604 6834421

Fax: +1-604-6810693

Email[email protected]

eta to Canada from Uk Mountain and forest in Canada

Are vaccines required to travel to Canada from the UK?

No vaccines are required for travel to Canada. However, it is recommended to be vaccinated against diphtheria, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, rabies and tetanus.

What is the time difference between the UK and Canada?

Canada is the second-largest country in the world, and as such it has several time zones across its territory. Here are some of its major cities as an example:

Ottawa/Toronto (GMT -4)

Winnipeg (GMT -5)

Calgary (GMT -6)

Vancouver (GMT -7)

London's time zone is GMT +1, so the time difference between the capital of Canada and the United Kingdom is 5 hours.

What is Canada currency and the exchange rate in pound sterling?

The Canada currency is the Canadian dollar (CAD) and is equivalent to approximately 0.60 pounds sterling (GBP).

Are there direct flights from the UK to Canada?

The UK currently has several airlines (Air Canada, British Airways and WestJet) flying directly to Canadian cities such as Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa.

In addition, Air Transat operates direct flights from Manchester and Glasgow to Toronto. A direct flight in this category can take approximately 8 hours, and there are usually at least two daily flights available.

Additionally, airlines such as KLM or Air France operate one-stop flights to Europe and onward to Canada. These flights take approximately 12 hours, depending on the length of the stopover.