Canada – Immigration Authority Extends eTA Leniency Period to November 9, 2016

Canada – Immigration Authority Extends eTA Leniency

This GMS Flash Alert reports on an announcement from Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada on the deadline for the “leniency period” for the electronic Travel Authorization (“eTA”) requirement.

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Flash Alert 2016-110

Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada (“IRCC”) recently announced that the “leniency period” for the electronic Travel Authorization (“eTA”) requirement is extended until November 9, 2016.1  (For prior coverage, see GMS Flash Alert 2016-038, March 16, 2016.)

eTA became effective on March 15, 2016.  However, IRCC allowed an initial six-month grace period such that foreign nationals may be eligible to fly to Canada without an eTA until Fall 2016.


Visa-exempt foreign nationals – other than U.S. citizens – are required to obtain an eTA to enter, or transit through, Canada by air.  The extension of the “leniency period” allows travelers more time to take necessary steps to apply and obtain an eTA prior to their travels to Canada.2 

Starting November 10, 2016, commercial airlines will begin to enforce the eTA requirement – they will receive a “Board” or “No Board” flag from the Interactive Advance Passenger Information System (IAPIS) for each passenger. Airlines will have no discretion to allow individuals with a “No Board” flag to travel to Canada.

All foreign nationals who require an eTA and have anticipated travels to Canada should obtain an eTA at the earliest opportunity. 

Background in Brief

In April 2015, IRCC introduced the electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). The objective of the eTA is to allow IRCC to identify individuals with admissibility concerns prior to their arrival at a Canadian port of entry. 

An eTA is required for the following individuals traveling to, or transiting through Canada by air: 

Canadian Citizen travelling
with a Canadian Passport
Canadian Permanent Resident travelling with a valid PR Card or PR Travel document    x
U.S. Citizen   x
U.S. Permanent Resident / Green Card holder x  
Visa-Exempt Foreign Nationals x  
Visa-exempt foreign nationals who received a work permit, study permit or a visitor record between August 1, 2015 and March 14, 2016   x
Foreign Nationals from visa required countries   x


An eTA is obtained electronically from  The process typically only takes a few minutes and requires a passport number and a credit card payment of C$7.00. The eTA is valid for five years or until the passport expiry, whichever comes first.  An eTA may be cancelled by an Immigration Officer if it is determined that the foreign national subsequently becomes inadmissible to Canada. 


1  For more information, see the IRCC webpage.

2  See the government’s September 20, 2016 News Release “Leniency period for Canada's new Electronic Travel Authorization extended until November 9.” 


For additional information or assistance, please contact your local GMS or People Services professional* or the following immigration professional with the KPMG International member firm in Canada:


Howard Greenberg

National Practice Leader - Immigration

Tel. +1 416-943-0288 ext. 224


 Please note that KPMG LLP (U.S.) does not offer immigration services

The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Canada.

© 2016 KPMG LLP, a Canadian limited liability partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.

Flash Alert is an Global Mobility Services publication of KPMG LLPs Washington National Tax practice. The KPMG logo and name are trademarks of KPMG International. KPMG International is a Swiss cooperative that serves as a coordinating entity for a network of independent member firms. KPMG International provides no audit or other client services. Such services are provided solely by member firms in their respective geographic areas. KPMG International and its member firms are legally distinct and separate entities. They are not and nothing contained herein shall be construed to place these entities in the relationship of parents, subsidiaries, agents, partners, or joint venturers. No member firm has any authority (actual, apparent, implied or otherwise) to obligate or bind KPMG International or any member firm in any manner whatsoever. The information contained in herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavor to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.

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