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Canada Tourist Visa For Indians: Tips and Requirements.

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In an effort to keep costs low, I always prefer to apply for international visas myself, torturous as that can sometimes be. After three painful Schengen visa applications, applying for a visa to Canada, even with my Indian passport, was almost a breeze! The visa requirements for Indians applying for a Canadian tourist visa are simple, and the process, facilitated by VFS in most of India, is efficient. I scored a multiple entry 7-year visa for Canada, and here are my tips to get you entry into the maple leaf country: 

1) The Canadian Visa Forms and Fee

Download the forms and document checklist from the VFS Canada website. Unlike most visa applications, the forms for a tourist visa to Canada are relatively short and few in number. The Canada visa fee for Indians is INR 4,000 for a single entry visa and INR 8,000 for a multiple entry visa.

However, the visitor form must be filled while you are connected to the Internet. It needs the latest version (11.0) of Adobe reader to be viewed and filled. The form can’t be signed electronically. Once you’ve completed the form, press Validate at the top of the form, which will generate barcodes at the end of the page. If you make any changes to the form before printing, make sure you validate it again. Print two copies of the form, and date and sign them.

2) Flight and Accommodation Bookings

As while applying for a Schengen visa, you need to show your confirmed flight and accommodation bookings. Making these in advance of the visa is always a bit of risk – so you’re better off making fully refundable bookings. Most full-fledged carriers and hotels on booking.com offer full refund upon cancellation. Once you receive your visa, you can cancel these and make your actual bookings. The idea is to show that you have enough money or credit limit to book your flight and stay.

3) Cover Letter and Support Documents

After ensuring that all your documents are in order as per the document checklist on the VFS Canada website, you should write a brief cover letter summarizing your application – why are you visiting Canada, how do you intend to cover your expenses, do you have an invitation letter, which countries have you obtained visas for in the past (having Europe, the UK or the US on the list tends to add to your credibility).

As a freelancer, I don’t have salary slips or a letter from an employer to show. To make up for this, I usually attach my resume, and copies of my past visas.

Canada visa requirements for Indians

My cover letter for my Canada visa application.

4) Choose The Multiple Entry Visa Option

I’ve always found Schengen visas to be stingy when it comes to multiple entry and validity. But I got a multiple entry visa to Canada, valid for 7 years! The best 4,000 bucks every spent. Whether or not Canada seems to be part of your plans again, having a valid multiple entry tourist visa to Canada as an Indian, has its advantages – you get Visa on Arrival in a handful of other countries, and it adds to your credibility while applying for other visas.

4) Applying For The Visa at VFS

VFS has nine visa centers for Canada, across India. If your city or town doesn’t have one, your options might be to go via a travel agent or courier your documents. You can reach the VFS Canada helpline to confirm.

The passport submission timings at VFS are between 8 am-12 noon and 1 pm – 3 pm, and no appointment is needed. You’ll be given a token number when you reach, and if you have all your documents in order, the process is quite straightforward.

5. Passport Collection

The official processing time is between 10 – 14 working days, but I my visa was approved within 2 working days! You can sign up for the free SMS / email alerts at the time of submitting your passport, or track your application online.

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Any other tips or experiences with an Indian passport and a Canadian visa?

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I leave for Canada in 5 days! Join me virtually on this trip via TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

If you have any tips for my trip to Canada, please comment, email, Facebook, tweet and let me know :)

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Also read:

9 Countries That Offer Visa on Arrival For Indians

Confessions of an Indian Travel Blogger

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13 Comments
  1. Any country will give you visa after reading the cover letter . ;)
    Anyways good luck for your trip. Bon Voyage :)

    May 13, 2013
    • Haha, luckily no one’s refused me a visa yet, though the Spain embassy has been so stingy in granting me a long term Schengen – it’s literally the date I enter to the date I leave. Makes me never want to apply for a Schengen again, but I hope I’ll have to soon ;)

      May 13, 2013
  2. Sunil #

    Very informative….And have a great time at Canad.All the best

    May 13, 2013
    • Thanks Sunil, hope to have you travel with me virtually :)

      May 13, 2013
  3. Hope they have u the 3-yr multiple entry like I got.

    May 14, 2013
    • I got the 7 year multiple entry :)

      May 14, 2013
  4. Nice the application for visa. Nice post. If you are travelling in Indian Highway’s then this will help you in the journey. ClickRoadies

    May 21, 2013
    • md.ershad ali #

      thank you if you free plz call me 09883243210 i need a info for canada tourist visa

      October 30, 2013
  5. Ravi #

    Hey Shivya, need a advise from you. I am travelling to Canada in next couple of weeks. I am on a work visa (GATS). I want to take my wife along with me and for her I need to get a Tourist visa. My intention is to taker her along with me. But there is a concern. My visa is getting expired next month and hence I need to be thr in next 2 weeks and again file for an extension.
    So I am confused as to shall I just go ahead and apply for her a tourist visa, but it should not get rejected as my visa has a short validity as of now OR I go there first and then get my visa extended and then initiate her visa process.
    Wat say? :) Thanks in advance!!

    September 20, 2013
  6. Nice tips and info’s on applying for a visa, I’m sure this will help a lot of Indians.

    October 8, 2013
  7. Suma Latha #

    Hi shivya,

    I am suma, presently staying Bangalore, I am a CIBTAC (UK) Certified Esthetician, and I have 8+years of strong experience in Beauty industry, I want to work in any part of canada, plz tell me if I go through tourist visa to find a job is it suggested, or hw to get into canada in work visa, how to get a job, if u have any suggestion plz help ……

    If anybody knows anything related to my question kindly help me………

    November 27, 2013

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