Canada Initiates “Visa-Free” Program For Filipinos

Here’s everything you need to qualify for the program

The Canadian Embassy in the Philippines has recently announced that certain Filipinos can now enter Canada by air without a visa. However, there are specific qualifications required for the program.

To qualify for visa-free entry, Philippine citizens must hold a Canadian visa within the past ten years. An alternative would be having a valid non-immigrant visa from the United States.

Instead of getting a visa, eligible Filipinos will apply for an electronic travel authorization (eTA). It’s a digital travel document required for most visa-exempt travelers entering or transiting through Canada by air. The eTA allows Canadian officials to conduct pre-travel screening of air travelers in a streamlined manner.

Applying for an eTA incurs a cost of $7 Canadian dollars. The Canadian Embassy assures that most applications receive automatic approval within minutes. The application process only requires a valid passport, a credit card, an email address, and internet access.

Once approved, Filipino visitors can enjoy a stay of up to six months in Canada. Yet, it’s important to note that visa-free entry is applicable only for air travel. Those traveling by land or sea must still get a visitor visa.

Canadian Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly expressed the country’s commitment to making Canada an accessible destination for people worldwide.

“Canada is a destination of choice for so many around the world. We’re making it easier for more people to visit Canada. Whether they’re coming to do business, sightsee, or reunite with family and friends,” she said.

Enrique Manalo, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs for the Philippines, views the inclusion of the country in the program as a testament to Canada’s growing friendship and trust in the Philippines.

“The Philippines considers Canada as a close partner due to its well-established people-to-people ties. Enrique said.

He also shared that the country “looks forward to charting a new era of engagement under this new policy.”

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