Canada’s new passport requirements come into effect in late September, forcing Canadians with dual citizenship to carry a valid Canadian passport to enter the country when travelling by air.
Starting September 30, all air travellers must have the appropriate documents to travel to Canada before boarding their departing flight.
“A valid Canadian passport is the only reliable and universally accepted travel document that provides proof that you are a citizen and have the right to enter Canada without being subjected to immigration screening,” reads a statement posted on the Canadian government website.
The new requirement, known as an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), was introduced earlier this year but hasn’t been strictly enforced. However, the government had been encouraging dual citizens to obtain a valid Canadian passport.
“Leniency will be shown to travellers who are caught unaware until September 29, 2016,” reads a notice on the Government of Canada website.
Prior to the change, Canadians who hold dual citizenship were able to enter Canada with their foreign passports and use a driver’s licence or citizenship card to prove Canadian citizenship. Now, air travellers must have either a valid Canadian passport; a Canadian temporary passport; or a Canadian emergency travel document for proof of citizenship.
The new requirements only currently apply to air travel.
American citizens and American-Canadian citizens can still fly into Canada on a valid U.S. passport.