One of the most awesome things about becoming a Canadian Permanent Resident is having the opportunity and flexibility to visit many countries without the hassle of going through visa applications.
I have had a bunch of countries in North America on my travel bucket list for years.
Unfortunately, I was discouraged from visiting when I saw the long visa application requirements and duration.
It just looked like too much work. Depending on the country, it could also be a very expensive process.
Thankfully, when you become a Canadian permanent resident, the ease of discovering new places opens up so much more.
All you have to do is book a plane ticket, an awesome hotel, grab your passport and PR card and you’re good to go. Becoming a Canadian permanent resident certainly makes spontaneous traveling a lot more fun.
Which Countries Can Canadian PR Travel to Without a Visa?
There are 26 countries that grant Canadian Permanent Residents visas on arrival unless your passport is already sufficient for exemption. For example, a British passport or a US passport.
I think by the time you get through this list, you’ll already be a Canadian citizen so you will have even more flexibility with travel:-
- Aruba – 90 days
- Anguilla – maximum 3 months
- Bahamas – 90 days
- Barbados – dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Bermuda – maximum 6 months
- Bonaire – 90 days
- British Virgin Islands – up to 6 months
- Cayman Islands – 60 days
- Costa Rica – 30 days, PR card must be valid for more than six months
- Cuba – 30 days
- Curacao – 90 days
- Dominican Republic – 60 days
- El Salvador – dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Georgia – 90 days in 180 days
- Guatemala – dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Honduras – dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Jamaica – up to 6 months
- Mexico – 6 months
- Nicaragua – 90 days within 180 days but dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Panama – 30 days or 180 days
- Saba – 90 days
- Sint Maarten – 90 days
- Sint Eustatius – 90 days
- South Korea – 30 days when in transit but dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Taiwan – 30 days but dependent on nationality. Check with the embassy
- Turks and Caicos Islands – 90 days
Travel to the UK as a Canadian Permanent Resident
You may be able to transit through the UK if you have a valid PR card issued after 2002. For clarification on this regarding the UK, see HERE.
Travel to the US as a Canadian Permanent Resident
If you’re disappointed the US isn’t on the list, not to worry.
Getting a US visa as a Canadian Permanent Resident is not that difficult but you will have to submit an application and pay for it. You will also be required to attend an interview.
In most cases, you will be granted a 10-year visa as a Canadian permanent resident.
Applying for a US Visa as a Canadian Permanent Resident
Applying for my US visa as a Canadian Permanent Resident was quite a challenge. Completing the DS-160 non-immigrant application form was straightforward.
However, after completing the application, I received an email to go to a different website to make a payment for the visa application and schedule an interview.
After the payment, the next available appointment date in Toronto was 2024 which was out of the question as I had to also travel for work so every few nights between 12 pm – 2 am, I would refresh the appointment page to check for cancellations. Sometimes, I did it early in the morning.
This went on for months before I finally managed to reschedule my interview date to Jan 2023. On the interview day, there was a long line in the embassy but they tried to get through everyone ASAP.
They asked me where I worked and why I wanted to visit the US then let me know my visa was approved and my passport would be sent across via courier (extra charges). I was at the interview window for less than 10 minutes. lol.
My passport came back about 10 days later with a 10-year visit visa and that was it! I was super glad when it was over and I’ll be a Canadian by the 10-year expiration date of the visa.
It seems standard that if you’re a Canadian Permanent Resident without any security flags, you’ll be issued a 10-year visa.
If you want to visit the US, apply ASAP because those interview dates are unreal!
You can find out more about applying for a US visa as a Canadian Permanent Resident HERE.
13 US Cities You Can Drive To from Canada
The good news is when you get your US visa, you can do a road trip to 13 US states who share a border with Canada. These include:-
- North Dakota
- New York
- New Hampshire
Travel Tips for Canadian Permanent Residents
There are some important things to note if you are traveling to countries that grant visas on arrival to Canadian permanent residents:-
- Your passport needs to be valid for at least 6 months valid prior to travel. They will likely not let you board the plane anyway if you overlook this but this is airline dependent.
- Just because it’s visa-free doesn’t mean you won’t be charged minor administration fees on arrival. This varies greatly from country to country so check with the specific embassy prior to traveling.
- In all cases, you should call the country’s embassy anyway to reconfirm the travel requirements before traveling in case you need to bring additional documentation along. You can find a list of country embassies in Canada HERE.
- Before you head out, be sure to check the Government of Canada’s Travel Advice and Advisories website for safety and security updates for over 100 countries.
My Travel Bucket List
Despite the hassles of applying for a visa on my current passport, traveling is one of my passions and I have been to quite a few countries so far:-
- Spain (Barcelona & Madrid)
- Germany (Frankfurt)
- Switzerland (Geneva, Montreux & Zurich)
- Mexico (Riviera Maya)
- Italy (Venice & Rome)
- USA (New York)
- USA (Miami)
- USA (Las Vegas)
Travel Within Canada
Trying to make my way around as much of big a** Canada as I can too 🙂
- Blue Mountain, Collingwood
Abi has lived and worked abroad for over 13 years. She loves traveling, reading, and writing. She is a big believer in following your dreams and has been marching to the beat of her unconventional drums for a long time. She funds her adventures by making smart financial decisions and investing wisely. Her top personal finance tools include trading with Questrade, investing change on MOKA, and no-fee banking with Tangerine and Neo Financial. Learn more about Abi HERE.
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