YVR welcomes Canada’s decision to expand visa-free travel

Musqueam Territory / Richmond, B.C. (June 6, 2023): Today, Tamara Vrooman, President & CEO at Vancouver Airport Authority, issued the following statement on the Government of Canada’s announcement that foreign nationals from an additional 13 countries will be eligible to apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), instead of a visa, to travel to or through Canada by air effective June 6, 2023:

“Expanding visa-free air travel presents immediate opportunities for YVR to connect with more countries around the world, including key destinations in Latin America and Asia. That enhanced access to global markets will provide incredible benefits for our community and support local economic growth.

“This decisive policy action is a step in the right direction for YVR, British Columbia and Canada. It continues to provide opportunities for people to enjoy our world-class tourism experiences or reunite with loved ones, creates new jobs, and will deliver more direct revenue for our local economy.”

Quick Facts:

  • YVR has been working for more than 25 years with its partners to expand visa-free transit between Asia and the Americas. The continued expansion of the eTA program will make Canadian airports, and YVR, more attractive to transiting travellers enabling greater connections to the world.
  • This expansion supports economic growth by attracting more transit business to Canada and ensuring our airlines remain competitive in a global market.
  • Every new international flight to YVR can generate up to $36 million to the B.C. economy and generate 320 new jobs in British Columbia.
  • Combining passengers travelling to Canada with those transiting through Canada to another foreign country makes new routes commercially viable while contributing to the local economy.

Background on Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA):

Canada introduced eTA in 2015. It is a digital travel document that most visa-exempt travellers need to travel to, or transit through, Canada by air. Following the successful expansion of Canada’s eTA program to Brazil in 2017, foreign nationals from an additional 13 countries may be eligible to apply for an eTA, instead of a visitor visa, to travel to, or transit through, Canada by air:

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Costa Rica
  • Morocco
  • Panama
  • Philippines
  • St. Kitts and Nevis
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Seychelles
  • Thailand
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Uruguay

More information about eTA and the expansion of eligible countries is available through the IRCC’s news release: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/news/2023/06/eligible-travellers-from-13more-countries-now-qualify-for-visa-free-travel-to-canada.html