Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa

Comprehensive guide has outlined the purpose of the visa, its eligibility criteria, application process, and more.

This guide is designed for foreign diplomats and officials visiting Canada for official duties, providing a detailed overview of the Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa, including its purpose, eligibility, application process, and more.

Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa Overview

This specialized category within Canada’s Temporary Resident Visas is intended for diplomats and officials from foreign countries. It facilitates their entry into Canada to perform official responsibilities.

Definition of the Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa

This temporary visa is issued to foreign diplomats and officials visiting Canada for official duties. Eligibility requires individuals to be from a visa-required country and possess a diplomatic or official passport.

Eligibility Requirements for the Visa

To apply for a diplomatic or official visitor visa to Canada, applicants need to submit specific documents depending on their citizenship and passport type. Here are the general requirements based on the information provided in the search results:

 For Citizens with Diplomatic or Official Passports:

– Visa application form (IMM 5257)
– Two recent passport photographs
– Diplomatic or official passport
– Note Verbale (Diplomatic note) indicating position, reason, and duration of the trip
– Itinerary of the trip with dates

For Non-Citizens with Diplomatic or Official Passports:

– Visa application form (IMM 5257)
– Two recent passport photographs
– Diplomatic or official passport
– Diplomatic or official visa in the country of residence
– Diplomatic note indicating position, reason, and duration of the trip
– Itinerary of the trip with dates

For Citizens with Laissez-Passer of an International Organization:

– Visa application form (IMM 5257)
– Family Information Form (IMM 5645)
– Two recent passport photographs
– Laissez-Passer
– Diplomatic or official visa in the country of residence
– Diplomatic note from the International Organization
– Itinerary of the trip with dates

Applicants can submit their applications to the visa section of the main Canadian consulate in their country, apply online, or at the nearest visa application center.

For U.S. visas for diplomats, officials, and international organization personnel traveling from Canada to the United States, applications are processed at the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa. Active diplomats and their family members are eligible for no-fee tourist visas to the U.S., provided they use diplomatic passports.

Foreign nationals in Canada must possess an entry document like a Canadian Passport, Permanent Resident Card, or a Canadian Temporary Resident Visa to enter Canada. Special and diplomatic passport holders should verify visa requirements for each destination as they may differ from regular passport holders.

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Permitted Activities

Holders can enter Canada for official duties, avoiding customs or immigration checks, limited to their official itinerary. They cannot work, study, seek citizenship, or access Canadian benefits like health coverage. For tourism or other non-official visits, a Canada Visitor Visa is required.

Eligibility Criteria

Eligibility varies by position, with specific roles qualifying for either the Diplomatic or Official Visa:

Diplomatic Visa Eligibility

Includes heads of state, government, or government cabinet ministers, diplomatic agents, delegates of international organizations, senior officials of international organizations, senior officers of ICAO, diplomatic couriers, and authorized special cases.

Official Visa Eligibility

Covers administrative and technical staff of diplomatic missions, individuals invited by Canadian or provincial governments, officials on missions for international organizations, private servants of diplomatic or consular members, and family members of officials.

US government officials may require work permits under certain rules, with some positions not qualifying for this visa.

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Application Documents

Required documents include:

  • Mandatory Canadian visa application documents.
  • A written request from relevant authorities or international organizations.
  • A declaration letter to the Canadian government.
  • Two Canadian visa photographs.

Application Process

Applicants from qualifying positions should submit their applications directly to the Canadian Consulate or Embassy in their home country, pay application fees, and may undergo an interview. Medical examinations or biometrics are typically not required.

Fees

The cost of a diplomatic visa application in Canada is CAD$100. This fee covers the processing of the visa application. Applicants are exempt from biometric and passport processing fees.

Visa Validity to process a diplomatic visa application in Canada

The processing time for a Canadian Diplomatic and Official Visa typically takes a few weeks. Applicants are advised to allow at least 15 business days for the processing of special and diplomatic passports, in addition to any time required for visa processing. If traveling to a country that requires a visa, an additional 3 to 45 business days should be considered.

The Canadian Diplomatic and Official Visa is usually valid for three months, corresponding to the duration of the official duties in Canada. Applicants can bring their dependents, including spouses, common-law partners, and children under 22 years old (or over 22 if full-time students), to accompany them on the trip.

To apply for the Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa, applicants need to submit specific documents based on their citizenship and passport type. The application process involves filling out the visa application form (IMM 5257), providing passport photographs, presenting diplomatic or official passports, submitting a diplomatic note indicating position and reason for the trip, and providing an itinerary of the trip with dates.

For U.S. visas for diplomats traveling from Canada to the United States, applications are processed at the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa. Active diplomats and their family members are eligible for no-fee tourist visas to the U.S., provided they use diplomatic passports.

Accompanying Dependents

Dependents, including the spouse, common-law partner, and children under 22 (or over 22 if full-time students), may accompany the visa holder. Children over 25 need a Canada Visitor Visa. Certain service staff may also accompany under specific categories.

The Canada Diplomatic and Official Visa is essential for foreign diplomats and officials with official duties in Canada. This guide outlines the key aspects of obtaining and utilizing the visa, ensuring a smooth application process and compliance with Canadian regulations.