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Immigration Procedure for Newcomers Upon Arrival in Canada

This article outlines the immigration procedure for newcomers upon arrival in Canada. It also outlines information about the funds, personal belongings and other items than you can bring into Canada. The procedure is similar for immigrants entering Canada at all ports of entry including air, sea or road.

When you arrive in Canada, you will be greeted by an officer from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). The CBSA officer will ask to see your passport and other travel documents. Make sure they are handy and not packed in your luggage. This will help speed up your entry to Canada. Most airports in large cities like Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancovers also have interpreters available if needed.

You will need to present the following documents to the CBSA officer:

  1. Your valid passport and/or travel documents. Your passport must be a regular, private passport. You cannot immigrate to Canada with a diplomatic, government service or public affairs passport.
  2. Your valid permanent resident visa, and your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR). The officer will make sure you are entering Canada before or on the expiry date shown on your permanent resident visa. Please note that this document cannot be extended, therefore you should make sure to enter Canada before your visa expires.
  3. Proof that you have sufficient funds to support yourself and your family after you arrive in Canada. officer will need to see the supporting documents such as a recent bank statement.

The officer will ask you a few questions to confirm that you still meet the requirements to immigrate to Canada. There are a few routine questions to establish your identity and to make sure you gave correct information that match your application. They will be similar to the ones you answered on your application for permanent residence. This should only take a few minutes.

You will not be allowed into Canada if you give false or incomplete information, or if you do not satisfy the officer that you meet the requirements for entry into Canada.

If there are no problems at the point of entry, the officer will authorize you to enter Canada as a permanent resident. The officer will also confirm your Canadian mailing address. Your permanent resident card will be mailed to you at this address.

Disclosure of funds

If you arrive in Canada with more than C$10,000 (or equivalent foreign currency), you must disclose this information to the CBSA officer.You will be asked to complete a reporting form, sign it, and hand it to a border services officer at the nearest CBSA office that is open at the time you are traveling. If you do not disclose this information, you could be fined or put in prison. These funds could be in the form of:

  • cash
  • securities in bearer form (for example, stocks, bonds, debentures, treasury bills) or
  • negotiable instruments in bearer form, such as bankers' drafts, cheques, traveller's cheques or money orders.

What you can bring into Canada

Be aware that you will be asked to declare items you bring in Canada. Take a moment to check out what you can and cannot bring in Canada, and what you must declare. You may want to check "How to I bring my belongings with me?" as well.

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