Canada’s new online mini-visa-No threat to privacy

Such mini-visas are to be launched for tourists from New Zealand, Australia and European nations wanting to visit Canada.

Canada’s new online mini-visas—Canada will have new online mini-visas for travelers from Australia, Europe and New Zealand wanting to visit Canada.

However, these Canadian mini-visas will not require visitors to answer personal queries, affirmed immigration minister Kenney. It may be worth mentioned that the US also has mini-visas that require visitors to reveal personal information. But, Canadian mini-visas to be issued online will not pry into personal details of the foreign visitors.


Speaking about the issue, Kenney said the there is no intention to ask foreigners questions asked by the US before issuance of a similar version of mini-visas.


Canada ETA by 2015—Canada’s Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) aims to have the steps taken by the US under its ESTA(Electronic System for Travel Authorization) program. The ETA will come into effect in Canada by the year 2015. It requires foreigners from visa- exempt nations wanting to visit Canada to complete certain requisites before flying to Canada.

Applicants will have the facility of submitting their applications for ETA online visa online. Applicants can submit their application forms through their smart phone even at the airport itself if they did not sent it before. An affirmative reply will be forwarded to the applicants within a couple of minutes.

Some applicants may, however, be required to have a follow-up with a Canadian visa official.

Concerns about queries in Canada mini-visa process—Although, the aim of Canadian government is to give entry to legitimate foreign visitors wanting to come to Canada, there have been concerns about the type of questions to be asked from visitors.

Jennifer Stoddart, a privacy watchdog commissioner, wanted the Canadian government to have details about questions to be asked from foreign air travelers to be contained in law.

She said the new Canada mini-visas will ask some foreign visitors to reveal details about the status of their mental health and drug abuse and such information might be shared with the US.

She feels the need for having more transparency in the program. The CIC (Citizenship and Immigration Canada) has, meanwhile, affirmed that all such details will be mentioned in the regulations.

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