Except for Canadian citizens and Permanent Residents, all others require permission to enter Canada as a visitor, with or without a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV).
Canada welcomes more than 35 million temporary residents (non-immigrants) each year.
Unless they are citizens of a visa-exempt country, persons who wish to enter Canada for a temporary purpose, such as tourists, temporary foreign workers (work permits) and international students (study permits) must apply for and be granted a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV).
The TRV is a document issued by a Canadian Immigration Visa Office outside Canada, showing that the holder has satisfied the requirements for admission to Canada as a visitor. Temporary Resident Visas may be for single entry or multiple entry.
As a general rule, tourists are admitted for a period of six months. Temporary foreign workers and international students are admitted for varying periods of time, as determined on a case-by-case basis. Extensions may be applied for within Canada.
It is important to note that possession of a valid Temporary Resident Visa does not necessarily mean that the Citizenship and Immigration Canada Officer at the Canadian Port of Entry will admit the visitor into Canada. At the Port of Entry, all visitors must demonstrate that the purpose of their visit to Canada is of a temporary nature. Citizenship and Immigration Canada Officers at the Port of Entry will deny admission to all persons who, in their opinion, do not intend to leave Canada at the expiry of their visitor status.
In addition, criminality and medical issues may prevent a visitor from entering Canada. Visitors to Canada must also be able to prove their ability to support themselves during their intended temporary stay in Canada.