Canada is working to improve border security by proposing the implementation of the Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) requirement. Under this proposal citizens from countries other than the United States that do not currently require a visa to enter Canada will need to obtain online authorization before flying to Canada. The eTA requirement is expected to take effect as of April 2015. In addition to improving border security, the eTA is expected to benefit the nearly three million international air travelers who visit Canada every year.

Canada and the United States Become Partners in Security

As part of the Canada-United States Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness Action Plan, Canada and the United States are working together to establish a system that will screen out threats to national security before they arrive in the North American perimeter. The new plan will be similar to the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA), which has been used successfully in the United States since 2008. As Canadian citizens are exempt from the ESTA requirement, U.S. citizens will be exempt form the eTA requirement.

While barring individuals who are inadmissible from entering Canada, eTA will facilitate travel for individuals who do not comprise a risk. For a small fee travelers will apply online and provide basic biographical information similar to the information that is currently collected when arriving at the border. By being pre-screened it is expected that travelers will experience faster processing upon arrival in Canada. In most cases the eTA will be granted within minutes of applying. Once an eTA is granted it will be valid for five years.

Source- Canada Gazette