While all adult travellers to Canada naturally need to have an official eTA to stay in the country, the question arises as to whether this eTA is necessary for a minor child. On this page we will explain whether you need an eTA Canada for a minor child and whether this document is really necessary. We will also explain how to apply for an eTA for your child.
Is it necessary for a minor to have an eTA to travel to Canada?
Canadian law states that children are subject to the same requirements for entering the country as adults. They must therefore have a passport and a legal entry permit such as a visa or an eTA.
The eTA is therefore a mandatory document for all minors, regardless of age.
As we will see below, the procedure for applying for an eTA for a child can also be done directly online. It is of course the legal guardians of the child's parents who are responsible for this procedure. Children are also eligible to apply for a traditional visa if they do not meet the eligibility requirements for this eTA.
Where and how to apply for an eTA for a child?
A minor child cannot of course apply for an eTA online on his/her own. It is up to the child's legal parents or guardians to apply for an eTA using the form on the official website or on a recognised intermediary website such as the one we recommend on this website.
On this form you will need to fill in a number of details about your child and the trip to Canada, including
- Answer "yes" to the question "Are you applying for another person?
- Answer "yes" to the question "Are you applying on behalf of a minor child?"
- In the personal data window of the parent/guardian or representative, fill in your information.
- You will then be redirected to a second part of the form where you can enter information about the child. Please ensure that you fill in the correct details of your child's passport number and identity here.
- Fill in your own email address to receive the eTA directly by email.
- In the signature field enter your child's name.
Once you have completed the eTA application form for your child, you will need to pay the application fee by credit card. This fee is the same as for an application for a residence permit for an adult.
What other documents are required for a child to travel to Canada?
In addition to a residence permit such as an eTA or visa, a minor child who wishes to travel to Canada must also have several other legal documents with him/her.
They will of course need their own passport as it will not be possible to use a parent's passport, even if their details are on it.
A minor travelling alone should also have a copy of his or her birth certificate, as well as a letter of authorisation to leave the country signed by both parents or by the legal guardian.
A child travelling with only one parent must also have their own passport and a copy of their birth certificate and a signed letter of authorisation from the second parent giving their address, telephone number and a copy of their passport or identity card with the parents' signatures.
For divorced parents with alternating custody who are travelling with one of their children, it would also be necessary to have a copy of the custody order with them. It should also be noted that a minor child travelling with a legal guardian or with adoptive parents must have a copy of the legal guardianship or adoption documents in their possession.
Finally, for minors travelling with someone other than a parent or legal guardian, a letter of authorisation signed by both parents or legal guardians to supervise the child is required. This letter must also mention the addresses and telephone numbers of the parents or legal guardians and it is also necessary to attach a copy of their identity card with their signature.
All of these documents may be requested at border crossings, once in Canada, to verify that the child is safe with the accompanying adults.