5 Reasons Why Canada Is Not Tourist Friendly, #travel

Stunning landscapes, diverse cities, and warm-hearted people but not their immigration system.



7/26/20234 min read

Canada is world-renowned for its stunning landscapes, diverse cities, and warm-hearted people. It's no wonder that each year, millions are drawn to explore the Great White North. In 2019, before COVID pandemic, Canada welcomed about 22.1 million international "tourists". However, while Canada is an attractive destination, many travelers and tourists express frustrations over its immigration system. Here are five reasons why Canada's immigration system might not be as travel-friendly as one might expect:


Visa Requirements Designed for Immigrants, Not Tourists:

One significant criticism of Canada's visa process is that it is designed with immigrants or refugees in mind, not tourists. While Canada offers visa exemptions for citizens of many countries, a significant number of others need to go through the meticulous process of acquiring a "Temporary Residence" visa before visiting. Tourists are often subjected to the same stringent requirements as those seeking permanent residence. This means providing a myriad of documents, from financial statements to invitation letters.

Furthermore, the need for some tourists to find a Canadian sponsor can be an added complication. The requirements can be a significant deterrent for casual travelers who might opt for destinations with simpler entry procedures.


Biometrics Appointment:

Introduced in recent years, the biometrics collection process involves visitors from certain countries providing fingerprints and photo identification at official collection points. Though intended as a security measure rather than to speed up the process, this step adds another layer to the already complex process, especially for those residing far from collection centers. It not only extends the visa processing time but also increases the costs associated with visiting Canada.


Strict Scrutiny

Canada's reputation for being stringent about its security and immigration policies means that the screening process is thorough. Some visitors, even those from visa-exempt countries, have recounted experiences of being subjected to extended questioning or even being denied entry at Canadian borders. This strict scrutiny, although essential from a national security perspective, can be off-putting for many tourists.


In-person Interviews

In certain situations, applicants might be asked to attend an in-person interview at a Canadian consulate or embassy. This can be inconvenient for those living far from these locations and can also add to the length of getting an appointment in a lengthy application process.


Processing Delays

In peak times, or due to various administrative reasons, the Canadian immigration system can face backlogs leading to processing delays. A tourist visa application, which might typically be processed in a few weeks, could take months or years in some cases. Such unpredictability makes it challenging for travelers to plan their trips, leading to potential disruptions in their travel agendas, or simply cancel the whole trip in favor other destinations of USA for instance.

Crunching Numbers

While Canada has legitimate reasons for its rigorous immigration policies, from protecting national security to ensuring the welfare of its residents, the system's complexity can be a deterrent for many potential tourists. Canada typically receives fewer international tourists than the USA. In 2019, Canada welcomed about 22.1 million international tourists, approximately 14.8 million came for leisure. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2019, the USA recorded approximately 79.3 million international visitors, 56.4 million came for leisure purposes.

Stress Tourism: Is It Worth ?

Visiting Canada, with its expansive landscapes, multicultural cities, and distinctive cultural experiences, can be a rewarding adventure for many travelers. However, for some, the stringent and intricate visa regulations might detract from the appeal, prompting the question: is it worth the hassle? When there are alternative destinations that are not only closer and more affordable but also offer warmer climates and simpler entry procedures, the lure of the Canadian wilderness or the charm of cities like Vancouver or Toronto might seem less enticing. The globe is replete with stunning locales, many of which have streamlined tourist-friendly processes that allow for spontaneous travel without the red tape. For the spontaneous traveler, budget-conscious adventurer, or those simply seeking warmer shores, the complications of the Canadian visa system might seem like an unnecessary impediment, steering them towards more accessible horizons.

The world is massive and destinations are endless.

It is your call!

Just Keep Traveling!