USA and the UK
- Canadian Passport Application Process Overview
- Eligibility Requirements
- Supporting Documents
- Passport Photo Guidelines
- Forms Needed
- Guarantors and References
- Submitting the Application
- Emergency Passport Services
- Exchanging Your Temporary Emergency Passport
- Applying for a Child’s Passport
- Renewing a Canadian Passport
- Processing Times
- Passport Validity
- Take Care of Your Passport
- Canadian Passport to Travel to the US
- Canada Refusal, Revocation, Cancellation, and Suspension of Canadian Passports
- How IAS Can Help?
- Frequently Asked Questions
Canadian Passport Application Process Overview
Canadian citizens can apply for a passport by mail or in person at a passport office or a Canada Service Centre.
Passport applications must be submitted with proof of Canadian citizenship, such as a birth certificate or Canadian Citizenship certificate.
You must also provide two recent photographs that meet specific requirements and prove that you need the passport.
In most cases, passports will be mailed out within six weeks of applying. However, if you need your passport sooner, you can request expedited processing for an additional fee.
People who need a passport within 48 hours are given priority over those who do not. If you need a passport quickly, let the passport office know when you apply.
Measures have also been implemented recently to manage wait times at passport offices, meaning that some applicants may be asked to mail their passport application or go to a different location.
Renewing a passport is more straightforward than applying for a new one. You can do so if you have an adult passport issued within the past 15 years and was valid for 5 to 10 years. You also need to meet other criteria, like having the same name, place of birth, and gender identifier that you want on your new passport.
Whether you are applying for a new passport or renewing an existing one, allow enough time for your application to be processed before your next trip.
To apply for a Canadian passport, you must be a Canadian citizen, have proof of citizenship, and be 16 years of age or older.
You will need to provide proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or a Canadian Citizenship certificate.
In addition to proof of citizenship, you’ll need to provide one piece of valid ID issued by a federal, provincial, territorial, or state government.
Your piece of ID needs to include:
- Date of birth
You can combine IDs if one does not contain all the required information.
IDs you can use:
- Driver’s license
- Health card
- Military ID
- Foreign passport
- Government-issued ID card
- Old (expired) passport
Documents from a foreign country need to be in English or French; otherwise, you must provide an official translation.
Passport Photo Guidelines
You must also include two identical passport photos taken within the past six months. One of them must be certified by your guarantor.
In Canada, passport photos must meet specific requirements to be accepted by Passport Canada.
The passport photo must be in color and must be square-shaped, with a minimum size of 50 mm wide by 70 mm high (2 inches wide by 2¾ inches high). Your face must be visible in the photo, and you must be facing the camera directly. You must also have a neutral expression, and your eyes must be open. Your photo must be in line with the passport photo requirements.
Once you’ve gathered all the necessary documentation, you’ll need to complete the appropriate forms. The form you’ll need to fill out depends on whether you’re applying for a new passport or renewing an existing one. You can download these forms on the Government of Canada website. Or pick one up at a Passport Canada Office, Service Canada Centre, or a participating post office.
You must fill out all three pages of the application and sign within the past 12 months of the time you apply. The application also needs to be certified by your guarantor.
One of the things you will need to apply for a Canadian passport is to have a guarantor. A guarantor is someone who can vouch for your identity.
Your guarantor must:
- Be a Canadian citizen
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Have known you for at least two years
- Hold a 5 to 10-year adult valid Canadian passport that has not been expired for more than one year
- Be available if the Government of Canada needs to contact them
If you don’t have a guarantor, you will need to find someone qualified to be your guarantor. A notary public, justice of the peace, or commissioner of oaths can sign your passport application instead of a guarantor. In this case, you must also fill out the Statutory Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor form.
If you are outside Canada, you can use a licensed and working occupation-based guarantor, such as a judge, notary public, lawyer, doctor, pharmacist, veterinarian, police officer, university dean, or a signing officer at a financial institution.
You also need to provide two references. These must be two people who are not your guarantor, nor are they related to you by blood, marriage, common-law partnership, adoption or guardianship, or live at your exact address.
Your references must:
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Have known you for at least two years
- Agree to be used as a contact in your application
- Be available to be contacted
Submitting the Application
Once your application has been filled out, and all required documentation has been gathered, it’s time to submit it along with payment proof to Passport Canada.
You can submit your application in person, or by mail, depending on the time frame you are requesting to have your passport issued.
You can submit your application in person or by mail at any passport program office or Service Canada Centre.
Any original documents will be returned to you.
Emergency Passport Services
The issuance of emergency passports is a procedure that should only be used in genuine emergencies. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to travel urgently but you do not have a valid passport, you may be able to get an Emergency Canadian Passport. This type of passport is issued on a case-by-case basis and is valid for the duration of your travel or a period of up to one year.
To be eligible for an Emergency Canadian Passport, you must be able to demonstrate that you have a legitimate, urgent need to travel and that you will be able to submit the required documentation. If you meet these criteria, you can apply for an Emergency Canadian Passport by visiting a passport office or contacting them by phone or email.
With this service, you can get an urgent passport in two business days, an express pick-up passport in two to nine business days, or an emergency weekend or statutory holiday passport. Extra fees may apply.
Contact the nearest Government of Canada office abroad and request emergency assistance if you are outside Canada.
Exchanging Your Temporary Emergency Passport
When you are issued a temporary emergency passport, you should sign a temporary passport exchange agreement.
This agreement outlines when you will need a regular passport (which should be within 60 days of signing the agreement) and the exchange location (which you can’t change).
You can exchange it by mail or in person at a passport issuing authority office and a $20 fee applies.
Make sure to use traceable mail when sending passports or other important documents in the mail.
Applying for a Child's Passport
If you’re applying for a child’s passport, they must be under 16 years of age. If they are 16 or 17, they must sign the application themselves.
In addition to the child’s birth certificate, you’ll also need proof of parental relationship if you’re not the child’s biological parent or legal guardian.
There are also additional requirements that must be met when applying for a child’s passport. For example, both parents or legal guardians must sign the application form and consent to passport issuance.
In addition, guarantors for children under 16 years of age must personally know both parents or legal guardians to sign the application form.
The parent or legal guardian applying for the passport on the child’s behalf cannot be their guarantor. However, the other parent or legal guardian can be as long as they meet the regular guarantor requirements.
When it comes to your Canadian passport, you have two options: apply for a new one or renew your existing passport. If your passport has expired or is about to expire, you can renew it. The renewal process is faster than applying for a new passport.
If you renew your passport, you do not need a guarantor, proof of citizenship, or supporting identification. You do require, however, two references.
A Canadian passport can be renewed if it’s expired, damaged, lost, or stolen as long as it was an adult passport issued within the past 15 years, it was valid for 5 to 10 years, has the same name, date, of birth, place of birth, and gender identifier that you want on your new passport.
Please note that you cannot renew a child’s passport.
If you are a Canadian citizen and your passport is expired or will expire within the next six months, you can renew your passport by mail. You will need to download and fill out the application form, gather the required documents, and send them to the Passport Office.
The conditions for renewing a Canadian passport by mail are:
- Your current passport was issued when you were 16 years of age or older
- Your current passport is valid or has been expired for no more than five years
- You were issued your last passport in Canada or from a Canadian visa office
- You have not changed your name since your last passport was issued, or you can provide proof of your name change
- You are not under a removal order, probation order, or peace bond
- You are not prohibited from entering Canada
- Your current passport is not damaged, and you have all the pages
If you meet all of these conditions, you can renew your passport by mail; otherwise, you will need to apply in person.
Lost or Stolen Passport
If your Canadian passport is lost or stolen while traveling, you must take immediate steps to protect yourself and your identity.
First, contact the local police and file a report. Then, contact the nearest Canadian consulate or embassy and inform them of the situation. They will be able to provide you with a list of documents that you will need to replace your passport. In most cases, you must submit an application for a replacement passport with two photographs and proof of Canadian citizenship. If you have a valid Canadian driver’s license, it can be used as one form of identification.
Replacing a lost or stolen passport can be time-consuming and costly, so it is essential to take precautions to prevent it from happening in the first place. Always keep your passport in a safe place and make copies of important pages before you travel. That way, if your passport is lost or stolen, you will have the information you need to get back on your way.
Remember that if your passport has been lost or stolen while traveling overseas, the nearest Government of Canada office can issue you an Emergency Travel Document so you may return home.
If your passport is damaged, you must apply in person. If you are traveling and need your passport urgently, you can request expedited service for an additional fee.
In most cases, you should receive your new passport within ten business days.
Processing times can vary depending on how you submit your application and whether or not you request expedited service (an additional fee applies).
Processing time may also take longer if the applicant does not meet all requirements or if additional information is required.
Two business days
If you need your passport within two business days, you must apply at a passport office that provides urgent pick-up passport services. This service is a walk-in service only (no appointments). Don’t go to a regular Canada Service Centre.
You will need to provide proof that you need the passport. This could be a plane, bus, or train ticket, your travel itinerary showing evidence of the dates that you will be traveling, or a written statement explaining why you need to travel.
Extra fees apply for this service.
3 to 45 business days
If you need your passport within 3 to 45 business days, you can make an appointment or walk into a passport office. Don’t go to a regular Canada Service Centre.
You will need to provide proof that you need the passport. This could be a plane, bus, or train ticket, your travel itinerary showing proof of the dates that you will be traveling, or a written statement explaining why you need to travel.
Extra fees apply for this service.
46 business days or more
If you need your passport in 46 business days or more, you can make an appointment, walk into a regular Service Canada Centre, or apply by mail. Don’t go to a passport office.
Regular 5-year adult passport – CAD 120
10-year adult passport – CAD 160
5-year child passport – CAD 57
Outside of Canada Fees
Regular 5-year adult passport – CAD 190
10-year adult passport – CAD 260
5-year child passport – CAD 100
All prices are in Canadian dollars and do not include applicable taxes. You can pay by credit card or debit card. Cash or cheques are not accepted.
Express Processing Extra Fees
Urgent pickup at a Passport Canada office (2 business days) – CAD 110
Express pickup (2 to 9 business days) – CAD 50
Standard pick-up (on or after 10 business days) – CAD 20
Weekend or statutory holiday – $355
Other Additional Fees
Additional Fees for Lost, Stolen, and Damaged Passports – $45
Certified True Copy of a page of your passport – $45
File transfer to a different passport office – $45
Once your application has been processed, and your fees paid, you will receive your new passport by mail. It is important to note that if you are planning to travel within two weeks, you should apply in person at a Passport Canada office to expedite the process.
If you have recently applied for a Canadian passport and were charged an incorrect fee, or if your application was canceled for some reason, you may be able to receive a refund. The amount of the refund depends on the circumstances of your application.
You must send a letter to the Passport Canada office in Gatineau, Quebec, to request a refund. The letter should include:
- Your name, address, and telephone number
- The reason for your request
- Details of the fees you paid (including the date and amount)
- A copy of your passport application form (if possible)
- A copy of your payment receipt (if possible)
Send the letter to:
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0G3
There is no specific form or template that you must follow when writing this letter. However, it is essential to be as detailed as possible so that Passport Canada can adequately assess your situation.
Please note that applications sent between April 1, 2021, and September 30, 2022, aren’t eligible for fee refunds according to the Service Fees Act.
For adults, passports are valid for five to ten years from the date of issue.
Passports for children under the age of 16 are valid for five years from the date of issue or until the child turns 16, whichever comes first.
Emergency passports are valid for the duration of the travel or a period of up to a year.
Take Care of Your Passport
It’s essential to care for your passport. When you receive it, please read the information page on how to keep it in good condition.
Please keep it in a dry and safe place. Even though it meets specific durability standards, it can still get damaged. If you report lost, stolen, or damaged passports continuously, you might face restrictions when applying for a new one.
Please note that if you report a lost or stolen passport, you won’t be able to use that passport again, even if it’s found at a later time.
Canadian Passport to Travel to the US
Canadian citizens traveling to the United States by land or sea do not need to present a passport when crossing the border. Instead of a passport, they can also present an original or a copy of a birth certificate or an original Canadian citizenship certificate.
However, all travelers to the US by air, including Canadian citizens, must present a passport.
Canada Refusal, Revocation, Cancellation, and Suspension of Canadian Passports
Canada refuses, revokes, cancels, and suspends Canadian passports for various reasons set out in the Canadian Passport Order. One common reason passports are canceled or suspended is because the holder owes money to the Canadian government.
Other reasons for passport refusal, revocation, cancellation, or suspension include criminal convictions, fraudulent activity, immigration violations, and national security concerns.
If your passport is canceled or suspended, you may be able to appeal the decision. You must file a written request with the Passport Office to appeal a cancellation or suspension. A senior official will review the appeal and will decide on the matter. If you are not satisfied with the decision of the senior official, you may have the option to seek judicial review by filing a lawsuit in court.
How IAS Can Help?
Applying for a Canadian passport is relatively simple, as you have all the required documents and information. Be sure to check processing times and plan accordingly; expedited service options are available if you need your passport sooner than 3-5 weeks, but they come at an additional cost. You can find more information on the Government of Canada website or pick up an application form at your nearest participating post office.
If you have any questions about the Canadian passport application process or if you need help with your application, don’t hesitate to contact us on +1 844 290 6312. We’re here to help!
Last modified on June 17th, 2023 at 8:13 am
Comprehensive immigration advice tailored to your circumstances and goals.
Designed to make your visa application as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Fast Track Package
Premium application service that ensures your visa application is submitted to meet your deadline.
Ensure you have the greatest chance of a successful appeal. We will represent you in any case.
The Advice Package
With our untimed Advice Session, our professional immigration lawyers will review your case and provide you with comprehensive advice, completely tailored to your needs and your situation.
The Application Package
With our Application Package, your dedicated caseworker will advise you on your application process and eligibility. Your legal advisor will then complete and submit your forms to the Home Office on your behalf.
The Fast Track Package
Our Fast-Track Application Package is a premium service for those who need to submit their application in time with their deadlines. Your case will become a top priority for our lawyers and you will benefit from our highest-quality services.
The Appeal Package
By choosing our Appeal Package, you can rely on our lawyers’ legal knowledge and experience to ensure you have the highest chance of a successful appeal. We will also fully represent you in any hearings/tribunals.
Yes, a Canadian passport is proof of citizenship. You can apply for a Canadian passport only if you are Canadian.
Yes, you can apply for a Canadian passport while abroad. If you are outside Canada and need a passport urgently, you can apply for an emergency passport.
The cost of a Canadian passport renewal is the same as for a new passport C$120.
No, at this time, you cannot apply for a Canadian passport online. You must submit your application in person or by mail at a Passport Office or a Canada Service Centre.
All Canadian passports have 36 pages. You must renew your passport and pay the corresponding passport fees if your passport is full.