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Canada Mexico Travel Requirements: An In-Depth Analysis and Updates

Canada-Mexico Travel Requirements

The geopolitical landscape is always subject to change, and immigration policies are often at the forefront of these shifts. One such example is the recent amendments to the Canada-Mexico travel requirements for Mexican citizens visiting Canada. This article aims to shed light on these changes, their implications, and the reactions they have garnered.

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Canada and Mexico have enjoyed deep, positive, and constructive diplomatic ties for over eight decades. However, recent developments have led to the Canadian government revising its travel requirements for Mexican citizens. Let's unpack this issue further.

Historic Relationship between Canada and Mexico 

The diplomatic relationship between Canada and Mexico has been marked by cooperative efforts to fortify North America as a competitive economic region. Both nations have consistently worked towards fostering bilateral, regional, and multilateral collaboration. This cooperation is evident in the travel and people-to-people connections that bridge the two nations.

Canada Mexico Travel Requirements Update for Mexican Citizens

As of late February 2024, the Government of Canada has adjusted its travel requirements for Mexican citizens. Mexican nationals who possess a valid US non-immigrant visa or have held a Canadian visa in the past decade can apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) if they are travelling by air using a Mexican passport. However, those who do not meet these conditions will need to apply for a Canadian visitor visa.

The Reason behind the Changes 

The decision to revise the travel requirements was propelled by a surge in asylum claims made by Mexican citizens. A significant number of these claims were either refused, withdrawn, or abandoned. The Canadian Government believes that these changes are necessary to preserve the integrity of the country's immigration and asylum systems.

Implications for Mexican Citizens 

The travel requirement changes will affect a significant number of Mexican citizens, especially those who do not meet the conditions to apply for an eTA. It may deter some Mexican citizens from visiting Canada, impacting tourism and familial visits. However, the application process for Mexican citizens seeking a work or study permit will remain unchanged. Mexican citizens wishing to work in Canada will still have access to existing labour pathways, including the Temporary Foreign Worker Program and the International Mobility Program.

Mexican Government's Response 

The Mexican government has expressed its regret over Canada's decision to revise its travel requirements. It believes there were other options available that may not have necessitated a change in visa requirements. Additionally, the Mexican government has stated that it reserves the right to respond reciprocally to this change.

Reactions from the Public 

The public response to the new travel requirements has been mixed. Some people, especially those with family members or loved ones in Mexico, are concerned about the possible implications these changes could have on them. Others, however, understand the need for the government to take measures to ensure the integrity of Canada's immigration system.

Impact on the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP) 

The Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP) plays a crucial role in the migration between Canada and Mexico. The Canadian government has expressed its readiness to work with Mexico to build on this program, offering Mexican workers new opportunities and benefiting businesses on both sides of the relationship.

The Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) 

The eTA is a digital travel document required by most visa-exempt travellers to travel to or transit through Canada by air. The Canadian government began expanding its eTA program to eligible citizens from visa-required countries in 2017. With the new changes, Mexico has joined the list of countries whose citizens can fly to Canada on an eTA if they meet certain requirements.

Work and Study Permits Unaffected 

It's important to note that the application process for Mexican citizens seeking a work or study permit remains unchanged. Mexican citizens holding a valid work or study permit can still travel by air to Canada with their existing eTA as long as it remains valid. They can continue to study or work in Canada based on the validity and conditions of their permit.

Future Monitoring of Visa Policies 

The Canadian government will continuously monitor the impacts of its visa policies for both visa-exempt and visa-required countries, as well as asylum claim trends. Any future adjustments to Canada's travel requirements will aim to preserve the integrity and sustainability of the country's asylum and immigration systems.


In summary, as of February 29, 2024, Mexican citizens will now face new travel requirements to Canada. Changes affect eligibility for electronic travel authorizations (eTAs) and visitor visas, impacting tourists, students, and business visitors.

Those with existing eTAs may see them automatically cancelled unless holding valid work or study permits. New applications must align with updated criteria, emphasizing the need for valid Mexican passports and, in some cases, previous Canadian visas or valid US nonimmigrant visas.

This pivotal update signifies a major shift in travel dynamics between Mexico and Canada, underscoring the importance of staying informed and prepared for seamless travel experiences.

For a comprehensive understanding and assistance with navigating these changes, Border Law clients are encouraged to reach out for expert guidance. Our team is ready to provide detailed insights and support to ensure your travel plans to Canada remain unaffected. Visit the official Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada website for more information.

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Canadian Immigration Services

This update has been compiled with the latest available information for the general information of Border Law clients and other interested parties. This Update is not comprehensive and should not be relied upon without appropriate legal advice.


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