Visa for Montreal, Quebec

Published on: Mar 31, 2018 | Tags: Canada eTA, Canada Visa

Visa for Montreal, Quebec - Canada


This article provides information on getting a visa for Montreal, or an eTA, to individuals looking for the right travel authorization. A valid visa for Montreal, or eTA, will be required prior your departure to Canada.

Visa and eTA overview

To fly to or even transit through a Canadian airport, you would require a visa or electronic travel authorisation (eTA). This means even if your original travel destination was not Montreal but America (for instance), an eTA or visitor visa would still be needed. As far as the documents required, those would differ depending on several factors such as the country of departure, nationality and mode of transport.

Generally, citizens belonging to visa-exempt territories or countries can transit through or visit Canada with a legally valid passport and a valid eTA for Montreal, provided the stay is not more than six months. Some individuals, such as Canadian citizens residing in another country, permanent Canadian residents, etc. may only need a valid passport to enter Canada. The following are a few more exemptions to the visa rule:

  • United States nationals
  • Individuals already having a temporary Canadian resident visa
  • Some foreign diplomats
  • French citizens who reside in Miquelon and St. Pierre
  • Commercial air crew
  • Individuals with a visa to enter America on a plane bound to the United States, where the sole reason for the plane halting in Canada is refuelling
  • Individuals transiting via Canada as a flight passenger who possess visa needed to enter the destination country
  • Individuals performing as an armed forces member of a nation that’s designated for Visiting Forces Act purposes
  • People with work or study permit re-entering Canada after a visit to America or Miquelon and St. Pierre

An eTA is needed for travellers with a visa exemption. Nationals of countries that aren’t visa-exempt countries wishing to enter Montreal temporarily, such as temporary foreign workers who are on work permits, tourists, and international students should apply for a TRV (temporary resident visa). TRV is essentially a government document issued by a Canadian Immigration Visa Office located outside Canada. It denotes the person in possession of a TRV has met the requirements to legally enter Canada as a guest. These temporary visas could be for individual or multiple entries.

Canadian Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)

The Canadian eTA is an electronic travel authorization that is intended to simplify the process of entering Canada for common travel purposes such as tourism, business or transit. Individuals wishing to visit Canada for under six months, for the purposes of tourism, business, transit, or receiving medical treatment may be eligible. A Canadian eTA is issued for up to five years' from the date of approval, or until the date of passport expiry, whichever comes first.

The Canadian eTA enables passport holders of dozens of countries to apply online for travel authorization without the need of a visa for Montreal. A current list of eTA eligible countries can be found here:

There are a wide variety of uses for a Canadian eTA, from attending family weddings to speaking at a business conference. However, there are limitations to using an eTA. If used in an unauthorized manner, an approved eTA can be revoked from an applicant. It is thus important to make sure eTA applicants understand the full scope of permitted travel uses of an eTA. 

Approved business use

Although a Canadian eTA is typically thought of as a tourist travel authorization, it can also be used for business purposes. 

With an eTA, travelers can visit Canada to meet with business associates, settle an estate or negotiate a business contract. Although it is not a work visa, a Canadian eTA can be used to conduct business meetings in Canada. If you plan to travel to Montreal for a business meeting using an eTA, you may be asked to provide additional documentation during your eTA application or at the Canadian border. You will likely be required to prove that your main source of income is received outside of Canada, and that your employer is also based outside of Canada. 

You can also attend a business conference in Canada with a Canadian eTA. If you use your eTA for this purpose, you may be asked by Canadian immigration personnel to prove that you are not employed nor seeking employment in Canada. 

Approved tourism use

Most people get an eTA for tourism purposes. Permitted tourism purposes include activities such as sight-seeing, and visiting with friends or family.

Approved transit use

A Canadian eTA can also be used for transit purposes, whereby a traveler is switching airplanes on Canadian territory while en-route to a non-Canadian destination.

Unauthorized use

Although there are many approved uses for a Canadian eTA, there are also some things you cannot legally do with an eTA. 

You are not allowed to work in Canada with an eTA. Although you can use an eTA for some business purposes, you cannot hold or obtain employment in Canada using an eTA. Thus, you must apply for a work visa if you wish to be employed in Canada. This is true whether you want to move your career to Montreal or hope for temporary employment. You cannot accept payment for any work in Canada without a proper Canadian work visa. 

You also cannot study in Canada using an eTA. You must get a Canadian student visa if you want to attend school in Canada. 

Requirements affecting eTA eligibility

  1. You can only use an eTA for entering Canada via aircraft.
  2. You must not have any prior refusals to enter Canada and no prior deportation history in Canada. If so, you will likely be denied an eTA.
  3. You must have an electronic passport.
  4. You must not have any highly infectious diseases, such as tuberculosis, at the time of your visit or at the time of your eTA application.
  5. You must not have been previously convicted of any crimes causing serious harm or damage to people or property.

Canada eTA application process

To apply for an eTA, you will need your passport and employment details. You should allow between 15-20 minutes per application. Applications are usually processed and approved within minutes for most applicants. However, due to enhanced and automated security screening, your application may be flagged and require a manual review. During a manual review, you will be requested to provide additional information or documentation to process your eTA application. Failure to provide this information or documentation in a timely manner during the manual review will result in a denied eTA application.

If you are eligible for an eTA, get started on your application by visiting

Types of Canadian visas and permits

Canadian eTAs are only for individuals from visa-exempt countries and permanent residents of the United States. If you are not from a visa-exempt country, are not a U.S. citizen, and are not a permanent resident of the United States, then you will need a visa for Montreal.

Tourist visa

A Canadian tourist visa is known as a Temporary Resident Visa, or TRV for short. Like an eTA, you can apply for this online. You can also apply using a paper-based application. The application requires more information and entails longer processing timelines than an eTA application.

Work permit

If you plan to work in Canada, either temporarily or indefinitely, you will need a work permit in addition to your eTA or TRV. Before you can apply for a work permit, you must usually have a job offer from a Canadian employer, although it is sometimes possible to waive this requirement depending on profession or the type of work an individual is able to do in Canada.

You can apply for a work permit either online or on paper. When you apply, you will need to certify that you will only work for the specific employer who has offered you a job, and that you will leave Canada at the end of your employment.

Study permit

Study permits are similar to work permits. To apply for a study permit, you must also have a TRV or eTA. All students need a study permit, with very few exceptions. Unless you will attend preschool, plan to apply for a study permit.

You can apply for a student visa online or on paper. You must agree that you will leave Canada at the end of your studies (unless you subsequently get a work permit), and you must show that you have adequate financial support to live in Canada.

Canadian visa application process

To apply for a Canadian visa, there are set number of steps which need to be followed. You can either apply online or apply on paper. For either type of application, you will be prompted to select the country where you are applying from as well as provide some information on your eligibility for your desired travel purposes.

Online application (eligibility restrictions)

The online application includes an instruction guide which is to be used to prepare the documents and forms needed to submit your Canada visa application. However, only eligible applicants can apply for a Canadian visa online. You can apply using the following link:

Paper-based application

To apply for a Canadian visa using the paper-based application, you will need to first download and print the application package, which includes all the relevant forms you will need to fill out. Once completed, you will need to pay a fee to process your visa application. Once paid, you can then submit your visa application for processing. To get started on your paper-based Canadian visa application, visit the following link:

Montreal travel information

Montreal is a diverse metropolitan city of Canada. It seamlessly blends yesteryear culture and modern prosperity, just like how Vienna does in Austria. This means the city has a lot to offer to both old-school travellers and the youth who are looking to have some fun in the city.

There’s a lot to do and see in Montreal. Public markets, nightlife, multiculturalism avenues, music festivals, etc. are part of life in Montreal. The biggest church, St. Joseph’s Oratory, in Canada is in Montreal. However, it’s located on the city’s west end, which means you would have to do a bit of travelling to get there.

The best time to visit Montreal is short spring – starting early May or late April. This is the time when the weather isn’t below-freezing temperatures and crowds are scanty. If it’s your first time visiting Montreal or you don’t know the city well, don’t self-drive your way around the city – things can get seriously tricky. Fortunately, there are several metro stations in the city.

Most of Canada is snow-clad. The southernmost border is where most human activity occurs. This naturally makes winter not the right time to visit Montreal. That said, the city doesn’t enter hibernation mode during winter. In fact, a lot of things happen during the snowy season too. For instance, there’s Mount Royal, which stays equally vibrant during winter as it’s in the warmer months. By the way, Mount Royal is a big hill and Montreal’s largest treasure, which was designed by the same person who created Central Park in New York.


At the end of the day, how good your Montreal vacation or visit turns out would depend on the time of the year you visit the place, and the planning you’ve done. And do not forget to obtain the right travel authorization for your trip to Montreal, as the last thing you need is being held by Canadian immigration officers for a breach you could have easily avoided.

Get the right travel authorization for Montreal

If you hold a passport from a country that is eligible for the Canada eTA such as the UK, Ireland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, or many other eTA eligible countries, you will need to obtain an approved eTA before your tourism, business or medical visit to Canada. Get started on your application, otherwise, visit the FAQ to learn more about the Canada eTA

Apply for Canada eTA