On December 5, a webinar featuring experts from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), provided insights on the topic of Visas for International & Domestic Business Events in Canada. The webinar was moderated by MMBC chair Minto Schneider, with presentations by Jacqueline Jung and Mathieu Joanisse, Senior Program Advisors for IRCC’s Special Events Services.
Here are just a few of the highlights from the webinar:
- IRCC’s Special Events team acts as a single point of contact between IRCC and the organizers of international events hosted in Canada. The team provides resources and guidance to event organizers on the visa and eTA application process, biometrics and entry requirements.
- If you’re planning an event that will attract attendees from outside of Canada, especially those from countries that are not Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) approved, be sure to register your event with IRCC at least six months before the event start date.
- Visitors from 67 countries can now apply for an eTA instead of a visa, which means quicker approval timelines. Click here to see the lists of visa-exempt (eTA eligible), and visa-required countries.
- In cases where a visitor visa is required, IRCC recommends that event attendees apply a minimum of 12 weeks before their travel date (not the event start date), especially if they plan to arrive in Canada days or weeks ahead of the event.
The Special Events Services team supports organizers of international events hosted in Canada by acting as a single point of contact for communications within IRCC, providing information on Canada’s visa and entry requirements and working with organizers and IRCC’s processing networks to coordinate the timely processing of visa applications for event participants.
Many thanks to the Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC), Canadian Association of Exposition Management (CAEM), Destination Canada, Convention Centres of Canada and Destination International’s Canadian Destination Leadership Council for making this webinar possible.
Stay tuned: We plan to schedule a followup session with IRCC toward the end of Q1 2024.