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February 8, 2023

Applying for an eTA: A African’s Guide to Traveling to Canada

With extensive expertise as a Canadian immigration consultant, I recognize the complexity often associated with traveling to Canada, particularly for citizens of Nigeria and other African nations. Among the prerequisites for Nigerian travelers to Canada is obtaining an eTA (Electronic Travel Authorization) prior to departure. In this article, I will offer a detailed, step-by-step guide tailored specifically for Nigerian citizens seeking to secure an eTA for their journey to Canada.

Step 1: Gather the required documents: To apply for an eTA, you will need to have a valid passport and a credit or debit card to pay the eTA fee. Make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months from the date of your entry to Canada.

Step 2: Complete the eTA application form: The eTA application form can be completed online, and it takes about 20 minutes to complete. The form will ask for personal information such as your name, date of birth, and passport details. It’s important to provide accurate and complete information as any errors or omissions can result in delays or a denied eTA.

Step 3: Pay the eTA fee: The eTA fee is $7 CAD, which can be paid using a credit or debit card. After paying the fee, you will receive a receipt of payment.

Step 4: Wait for the eTA to be processed: Once the application is submitted, it will take about 72 hours for the eTA to be processed. You will receive an email notification when the eTA has been issued. In some cases, additional information or documentation may be required, and the processing time may be longer.

Step 5: Check the status of the eTA: You can check the status of your eTA by logging into your account on the Government of Canada website. It’s important to check the status of your eTA before your trip to ensure that it has been approved.

It’s crucial to highlight that an eTA remains valid for a period of 5 years or until the passport expires, whichever comes first, a rule applicable not only to Nigerian citizens but also to travelers from across Africa. With an eTA, Nigerian citizens are granted a maximum stay of six months in Canada. However, it’s imperative to verify the entry stamp provided by the Border Services Officer upon arrival, as the duration of stay can vary based on individual circumstances, mirroring practices observed throughout Africa.

In summary, the application process for an eTA presents Nigerian citizens, as well as travelers from other African nations, with a streamlined and uncomplicated procedure for those intending to visit Canada. By adhering to the guidelines detailed in this article and furnishing precise and comprehensive information, applicants can effectively secure an eTA and prepare for their journey to Canada. However, it’s crucial to bear in mind that possessing an eTA does not ensure entry into Canada; the ultimate decision rests with the Border Services Officer at the point of entry. I recommend keeping the eTA confirmation and all the travel documents handy, and to have all the required documents in order to have smooth travel experience.