Do you have family who lives in Canada whom you are yearning to visit? Maybe a son or daughter who just had the most adorable baby boy you’ve ever seen and you are anxiously waiting for the day when you can hold your new grandchild in your arms.
Or maybe you want your parents to visit you in Canada?
If any of those is the case for you, you’ll be thrilled to know there is a quick and efficient way for your family to get together through the Canada Super Visa program.
What is Canada Super Visa?
The Super Visa is a great program created by the Canadian government designed specifically for parents and grandparents who want to visit their children and/or grandchildren but have no desire to make a permanent move to Canada.
The Super Visa is valid for ten years and is a multiple entry visa allowing the applicant to come in and out of Canada as they choose to stay for as long as two years at a time.
What is the Difference Between Super Visa and Visitor Visa?
Multiple-entry Visitor Visa and Super Visa both enables travellers to come in and out of Canada multiple times. And both could last up to 10 years.
The main difference though between Super Visa and Visitor Visa is that Super Visa holders can stay in Canada for up to two years per entry, while those who have Visitor Visa can stay just up to 6 months without renewing status.
Canada Super Visa Requirements
It is essential for the success that both the host and the invitee meet the super visa requirements.
If you are a parent or grandparent considering the supervisa, your application will need to be submitted by the relative (your child or grandchild) who lives in Canada.
If you are the one wishing to bring your parent or grandparent, first and foremost, you will need to either be a Permanent Resident or a Canadian Citizen. Also, you will need to find out what the requirements for a supervisa are and be sure to meet a few essential criteria.
One of the important criteria for the host is meeting the minimum income threshold. The minimum income requirements for you may see in the table below:
|Size of the family unit||The required income, CAD|
|1 person (the sponsor)||$24,949|
If more than 7 persons, for each additional person you’d need $6,723.
Note: dependents of your parent or grandparent cannot be included in the application. For example, if your parents are planning on visiting you to see their new grandchild, any brother or sister still living with your parents cannot be named as a dependent.
Unfortunately, not everyone who applies will be accepted into Canada. Simply meeting the criteria of being a parent or grandparent does not guarantee entry into Canada through the supervisa. The same exceptions and rules of sponsorship apply for the super visa.
For example, if the immigration officer feels there may be ulterior motives behind the visit, or if the person has a criminal record, they will deny the application.
When the supervisa application is received, some additional things an immigration officer may consider or ask themselves are:
- Will this person leave the country willingly?
- Do they have strong enough ties back to home to go back?
- Is the supervisa a ruse to escape a bad situation back home? For example, political instability.
- Are they likely to claim asylum or refugee status once in Canada?
How your parent or grandparent comes off in the application will have a bearing on whether the application is approved or not. If denied, a letter will be sent explaining the reasons for the denial.
Specific Requirement: Super Visa Insurance
Your parent or grandparent will also need to have medical insurance in Canada with coverage that needs to be valid for a year.
Keep in mind, health insurance cannot be provided from a company in your parents or grandparents home country, the policy has to be provided through a Canadian insurance company, such as:
Talk to a few different companies to see what they offer and what services would be covered before making a decision which is suitable for you. When applying, documentation will need to be provided showing the insurance has been paid for in full.
Super Visa Application Process
How to Apply for the Super Visa
Everything starts with the Super Visa Invitation Letter from a host in Canada. The host should meet all of the requirements and the letter should have all the necessary information.
Even though the letter of invitation has to come from you, a super visa application has to be submitted from your parent or grandparent’s country of origin or outside of Canada.
As part of the supervisa application process, the applicant (your parent or grandparent) may be subjected to a medical examination and be required to submit biometrics, especially if they live in a visa-required country. A letter will be sent detailing how and where to go to do this. The applicant typically has thirty days to submit their biometrics.
Once this is received, a decision will be made. If approved, the applicant’s passport will have the visa stamped inside and sent back to them. If the applicant is from a visa-exempt country, a letter is sent instead with the approval, which will need to be presented to the border services officer when entering Canada.
Super Visa Invitation Letter
The successful super visa application process starts with a brilliant super visa letter of invitation. Below you may see the information that the invitation letter should include.
About the host:
- Complete name
- Date of birth
- Telephone number
- Job title
- Information about status in Canada, including proof of status
- Family details, including names and dates of birth
- The total number of persons residing in the household
About the invitee:
- Complete name
- Date of birth
- Telephone number
- Relationship to the host
- The purpose of the trip
- Length of the stay
- Where the invitee will stay
- How the invitee intends to finance purchases while in Canada
- When the invitee plans to leave Canada
- A signed promise of financial support for the invitee by the host
- Proof of minimum income
Visa Exempt Countries May Still Require Super Visa
If your parents or grandparents live in a visa-exempt country such as Australia or the United Kingdom, you may be wondering whether they need to apply for the Super Visa since they can simply travel using an eTA (electronic travel authorization).
This is of course something you can consider but it depends entirely on how long they’re planning on staying. If the applicant intends on making only one visit and plans to stay for six months or less, an eTA is the easier route to follow. For countries requiring visas, they should consider the visitor’s visa for the same scenario.
However, if they’re planning on staying for longer than six months, you are encouraged to apply for the supervisa since it will allow them to stay in Canada for up to two years and come and go for a period of ten years.
If you’ve applied for a sponsorship and want to consider the super visa instead, it is possible to cancel your sponsorship application and apply through the supervisa program.
Canada has some of the best visiting policies around the world and the government encourages citizens and residents to invite their families to visit and spend time in this beautiful country.
So if you just had a new baby and you’re yearning to have your mom hold him in her arms, or your daughter is graduating from medical school or getting married and the celebrations cannot be complete without her grandparents around, then apply for the super visa!
With everything being done online now, it has never been easier to have family there in the most important moments of your life.