Canadian Super Visa
A super visa is a multiple entry visitor visa specifically for the parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents. It allows holders to stay in Canada for up to two years at a time without needing to renew their status.
The super visa allows eligible parents and grandparents to stay temporarily in Canada. To stay permanently, parents and grandparents must be sponsored for permanent residence by their Canadian child or grandchild.
Super Visa vs Visitor Visa
Super visas are a type of Canadian visitor visa that is only available to parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens or permanent residents. The biggest difference between a super visa and a visitor visa is the length of time you are allowed to stay in Canada. Normally, a visitor visa can be valid for a stay of up to 6 months. To prolong your stay in Canada you need to apply to extend your visa. With a super visa, you may be able to stay in Canada for up to two years at a time without needing to apply for an extension.
How to Apply for a Super Visa
You can apply for a super visa online, or by submitting a paper-based application. In either case, you must prove that you are the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. Your application needs to include a letter of invitation from your child or grandchild that includes plans for your care and information about the number of people living in their household in Canada. You will also be required to demonstrate that you have private health insurance from a Canadian insurance company valid for at least one year. Your child or grandchild will also be required to demonstrate that they have enough funds to support you during your visit by meeting the Low Income Cut-Off (LICO) minimum for their family unit size.
Super Visa for Visa-Exempt Visitors
Depending on their country of citizenship, some foreign nationals do not require a visitor visa to visit Canada. These are referred to as visa-exempt visitors. Visa-exempt visitors are only allowed to remain in Canada for a period of up to six months without renewing their status. So, parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents who are visa-exempt may still want to apply for a super visa. This will allow them to remain in Canada for up to two years at a time, increasing the time they can spend with their loved ones in Canada.
Visa-exempt parents and grandparents who apply for a super visa have to follow the same application procedure detailed above. However, successful applicants will be issued a letter to present to the border services officer when they enter Canada, which authorizes their stay, instead of a visa. Visa-exempt visitors who travel to Canada by air are required to apply for an electronic travel authorization (eTA), even if they have successfully applied for a super visa.
Super Visa Extensions
Super visas allow holders to remain in Canada for up to two years. If you want to stay in Canada for longer than two years, you must apply to extend your stay. You should submit your extension application no later than 30 days before your current status expires. If your current visa expires while your extension application is still being processed, you may remain in Canada while waiting for a decision to be made. This is called implied status.
Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship
As an alternative to the super visa, which allows holders to stay in Canada temporarily, you may wish to pursue permanent immigration through the Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship program.
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