Do French citizens need a visa or some other travel paperwork aside from their passport to attend a conference in Canada?

I’m interested in entries by air and by land. I know that for tourism, they need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) for entries by air.

  • 3
    What makes you think that the requirements for conferences would be any different than any other temporary visit?
    – littleadv
    Oct 6, 2023 at 6:53
  • @littleadv conference visas in India, working being disallowed when entering as a tourist or visa-free in some some countries and my 1 hour wait in the secondary last time I entered Canada by land because the presence of screen monitors in my back seats made them thought I was planning to work in Canada. Oct 6, 2023 at 12:26

1 Answer 1


No. In any case, a temporary resident visa (for visits, work or study) cannot be issued to a visa-exempt national. If they come to Canada by air, an electronic travel authorization is required (other than for a U.S. citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident).

Usually, the only issue, assuming standard admissibility requirements are met, is whether a work or study permit is required.

Foreign business visitors, including those who attend conferences, do not require a work permit, if the following is met

To qualify as a business visitor to Canada, you must show that

  • you plan to stay for less than 6 months
  • you don’t plan to enter the Canadian labour market
  • your main place of business, and source of income and profits is outside Canada
  • you have documents that support your application
  • you meet Canada’s basic entry requirements, because you
    • have a valid travel document, such as a passport
    • have enough money for your stay and to return home
    • plan to leave Canada at the end of your visit
    • are not a criminal, security or health risk to Canadians
  • 2
    @littleadv ircc.canada.ca/english/visit/visas.asp suggests that ETA is not required for US permanent residents.
    – phoog
    Oct 6, 2023 at 13:08
  • @phoog the question is about French citizens. What does US permanent residency have to do with that?
    – littleadv
    Oct 6, 2023 at 17:22
  • @littleadv given all the questions Franck has asked on expatriates about naturalization in the US, and before that about obtaining a green card, it's fairly likely that the French citizen in question is a permanent resident.
    – phoog
    Oct 7, 2023 at 2:21
  • @phoog and how would a random French citizen who came here from a google search know that you're just assuming that Franck is going to a conference? Why not just answer the question as asked without making assumptions?
    – littleadv
    Oct 7, 2023 at 5:19

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