Canada’s Revised Travel Policies for Mexican Nationals

Canada and Mexico share a dynamic and multifaceted relationship that has evolved and strengthened over many decades. Rooted in mutual respect and cooperation, their partnership extends across various sectors, including trade, diplomacy, and cultural exchange. Both countries have cooperated on issues ranging from immigration and security to environmental sustainability and global governance.

In a bid to facilitate smoother travel and foster stronger people-to-people ties between Canada and Mexico while upholding the integrity of its immigration framework, the Canadian government has introduced modifications to its travel requirements for Mexican nationals.

What are the changes for visitor visa and eTA?

As of 11:30 p.m. ET February 29, 2024, changes have been implemented in the visitor visa and electronic travel authorization (eTA) requirements for citizens of Mexico. To be eligible for an eTA, individuals must now meet new requirements.

  • Any existing eTA issued before the specified time has been cancelled unless the individual also holds a valid work or study permit.
  • Those with eTA applications in progress must apply for a new eTA or a visitor visa.
  • Eligible travelers planning to visit Canada need to apply for a new eTA, while those who are no longer eligible must apply for a visitor visa instead.

This measure acknowledges the significant number of Mexican citizens currently holding US visas, with the majority continuing to enjoy visa-free entry to Canada. However, those not meeting these specific conditions will be required to obtain a Canadian visitor visa.

What’s the reason behind the changes?

This change comes in response to a rise in asylum claims from Mexican nationals, a significant proportion of which are either rejected, withdrawn, or abandoned. It stands as an essential step to uphold mobility for hundreds of thousands of Mexican citizens while ensuring the effective management of Canada’s immigration and asylum systems.

Notably, the application process for Mexican citizens seeking work or study permits remains unchanged. Opportunities for Mexican nationals to work in Canada persist through various existing labor pathways, including the Temporary Foreign Worker Program and the International Mobility Program.

Canada is expanding its network of visa application centers in Mexico to enhance service delivery. This decision was made to alleviate pressure on Canada’s borders, immigration system, housing, and social services while ensuring continued mobility for Mexican citizens wishing to visit Canada.

Canada reaffirms its commitment to encouraging continued travel, tourism, and business interactions with Mexico. Collaborative efforts with the Mexican government aim to enhance regular immigration pathways, alongside cooperation with provincial and territorial counterparts to manage migration effectively and provide support to those in need of protection.

Source: Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada