Generally, a citizen of a foreign country who wishes to enter another country must first obtain a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay, or an immigrant visa for permanent residence. Visitor visas are nonimmigrant visas for persons who want to enter another country temporarily for business, tourism, pleasure, short-term study, visiting family or relatives, or a combination of any of these purposes.
Different countries may have a list of countries whose citizens may be exempted from obtaining a visa and may have a facility of getting their visas on arrival (at the port of entry).
Different countries issue visitor visa for different durations, however, a visitor is typically allowed to stay in a foreign country for up to 6 months.
General Requirements for obtaining a visitor visa:
Valid Passport with an expiry date of over 8 months (from the date of Visa application).
Purpose of visit
Proof of funds, income and establishment
Invitation letter from a family, friend, business, school, etc.( if applicable)
Supporting documents from the Host in the foreign country
Supporting documents from the applicant
Cover letter and invitation letters explaining your purpose and abilities clearly.
Other documents as applicable.
Type of your visa depends on purpose of your visit.
General Tourist: Holidaying / Sightseeing
Family and Social visits
consult with business associates
attend a scientific, educational, professional, or business convention or conference / exhibition
settle an estate
negotiate a contract
Taking up a short term course (less than 6 months)
Guest of Government visits.
There are two types: a single entry visa and a multiple entry visa. Both are valid for a fixed period and cannot be used after they expire.
A multiple entry visa allows visitors to come and go from Canada for six months at a time, without having to reapply each time. It can be valid for up to 10 years, or one month before your passport expires, whichever is earlier. You must arrive back to the your home country on or before the expiry date on your visa.
A single entry visa allows you to come to the foreign country only one time.
Most visitors are allowed a six-month stay from the day they enter. If the officer authorizes a stay of less than six months, they will indicate in your passport the date by which you must leave the country. If you need more time and do not wish to leave the country upon expire of your visa, you will be required to apply for an extension of your stay.
Visitors are generally granted six months of stay from the date of their arrival into the foreign country, and their passport bears a simple stamp from the Immigration Officer at the Port of Entry. The visitor is then expected to leave on or before the end of the six month period. Sometimes however there are valid reasons to extend your stay, and then you need to get approval to do so. This approval is important, as it allows you to remain with legal status, and leaves your options open for future return visits, or applying for Permanent Residence or for any other visa class at some future date.
What about my family?
Your application can cover your partner, and any dependent children up to the age of 19. Children over 20, and non-dependants, will need to make their own application.
Dependent children of Essential Skills work visa holders
Visitor visa applications for dependent children of Essential Skills work visa holders will need to include evidence that the parent who holds the Essential Skills work visa meets a minimum income threshold.
For more accurate information and detailed discussion on your application, please consider contacting and meeting our experienced counsellors.
GEPSI wishes you a very bright career and success ahead.