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May 2, 2017
Ottawa eases visa requirement for Bulgarians and Romanians in view of CETA implementation
The Government of Canada announced that, starting May 1, 2017, citizens of Bulgaria and Romania who have held a Canadian visa in the last 10 years or who currently hold a valid United States (U.S.) nonimmigrant visa will be eligible to apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), instead of a visitor visa, to travel to Canada by air.
For now, those who do not meet the above criteria or are travelling to Canada by car, bus, train, or boat will still need a visitor visa.
Bulgaria and Romania are the only countries from the European Union (EU) whose citizens require a visa to enter Canada. The two countries made their approval of the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) conditional to the repeal of the visa requirement.
Canada intends to fully lift the visa requirements for all Romanian and Bulgarian citizens on December 1, 2017. At that point, these citizens would no longer need a visa to travel to Canada. However, similar to other visa-exempt travellers, they would need an eTA to board their flight to Canada.
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