Omar Alghabra, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs (Consular Affairs), and Arif Virani, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, today met with Canadian travelers at Pearson International Airport to launch the government’s Travel Smart app. This new app makes it easy to access real-time information, including entry and exit requirements, border wait times, passport validity and more. Representatives of the Greater Toronto Airports Authority and airlines were also on hand to underline how good planning and preparation can reduce the stresses associated with air travel.
Today also marked the implementation of Canada’s new entry requirement, the Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). This requirement applies to foreign nationals, from countries whose citizens normally do not need a visa to travel to Canada, who are traveling to or transiting through Canada by air. From now until fall 2016 a leniency period is in place to allow travelers without an eTA to board their flights as long as they have appropriate travel documents. Canadian citizens, including dual citizens, and Canadian permanent residents do not need an eTA.
The Government of Canada is committed to providing the right tools and technologies to help Canadians be prepared for today’s evolving travel environment. The Travel Smart app is one more useful tool that provides timely information to Canadians at the touch of a screen and on the go, whether they are traveling to a sunny destination or working or studying overseas. Travel Smart will also help them stay connected in case of an emergency abroad.
– Omar Alghabra, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs (Consular Affairs)
As Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently said, Canada is working to enhance border security while continuing to welcome people to our country. Canada’s new entry requirement does just that. Electronic Travel Authorization allows us to check that visa-free travelers are admissible before they board their flight. At the same time, the fast, easy online process ensures traveling to Canada remains easy and stress-free.
– Arif Virani, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
By working closely with the Government of Canada and with airline carriers, we are seeking to improve and facilitate the passenger experience in the context of an increasingly complex and ever-changing international travel environment. Our collective efforts aim to ease the challenges that Canadians face when they make the choice to travel.”
– Howard Eng, President and CEO, Greater Toronto Airports Authority