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AC: Feds need to do more to warn travellers about Electronic Travel Authority (eTA)

AC: Feds need to do more to warn travellers about Electronic Travel Authority (eTA)

Old Nov 16, 16, 7:07 am
  #1  
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AC: Feds need to do more to warn travellers about Electronic Travel Authority (eTA)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toront...rise-1.3852177

Robin Ince tells jokes for a living, so when he was stopped at Heathrow Airport on his way to a gig scheduled for last Saturday night in Toronto hosted by former astronaut Chris Hadfield, he thought someone was pulling a fast one.

Not so.

Staff at the Air Canada check-in counter asked him for his Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).

"That's when it all went wrong," Ince said in a phone interview Tuesday with CBC Toronto from backstage at a show in Cardiff, Wales. He ended up missing his flight.


---------------------

Air Canada says it's been working to get the word out about the government's change through its social media and website.

"We have been encouraging the government to do more to publicize its eTA requirement," said Peter Fitzpatrick, a spokesperson for Air Canada.

"We believe the government needs to take immediate steps to further communicate their new policy."
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Old Nov 16, 16, 7:10 am
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The feds need to remove this eTA backwards garbage.

This is Canada, and this nonsensical moneygrab is antithetical to the welcoming and open country that we are.
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Old Nov 16, 16, 7:12 am
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Originally Posted by Bonaventure View Post
The feds need to remove this eTA backwards garbage.

This is Canada, and this nonsensical moneygrab is antithetical to the welcoming and open country that we are.
Well said. Could not agree more ^
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Old Nov 16, 16, 8:03 am
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With the cost of air travel i'd hardly call 7$ over 5 years a money grab.

Lots of stories around this week of people missing flights, including dual-Canadians citizens who are trapped out of Canada because they either don't have or did not originally travel outbound with their Canadian passport
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Old Nov 16, 16, 8:39 am
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Originally Posted by ABG View Post
With the cost of air travel i'd hardly call 7$ over 5 years a money grab.
so where do you draw the line?

Lots of stories around this week of people missing flights, including dual-Canadians citizens who are trapped out of Canada because they either don't have or did not originally travel outbound with their Canadian passport
How does not originally traveling outbound with your Canadian passport influence your re-entry?
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Old Nov 16, 16, 8:46 am
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Originally Posted by pewpew View Post
......
How does not originally traveling outbound with your Canadian passport influence your re-entry?

This discussion of how the new rules relate to dual citizens (Canadian + other. Dual Canadian-American are exempt)

Post from February 2016 in this thread http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/air-c...sengers-5.html


Originally Posted by TemboOne View Post
While this may have been alluded to previously an aspect of Canada's new ETA system may not be clear to many of us who have dual-citizenship.

This is made clear by Kristen Shane in yesterday's edition of EmbassyNews.ca

http://www.embassynews.ca/news/2016/...y-screen/48250

Essentially it means that a Canadian Citizen with dual-nationality from a visa-waiver country must have a Canadian Passport to enter/re-enter Canada. This is because as Canadian Citizens they are not allowed to apply for and be granted an ETA. This in effect precludes most western European countries' citizens who also have Canadian Citizenship from ever entering Canada without a Canadian Passport.

It is interesting to note that this is similar to the U.S. rules whereby dual U.S. citizens must enter the U.S. only on their American Passports.

It is very much a matter of opinion as to whether or not the example quoted whereby a dual British/Canadian renewed her passports for alternate terms of validity was/is a wise choice.

With Canadian Passports now also being available for ten year terms it makes no sense to not always have a current one - as well as whatever other nationality to which we may be entitled.
I also get the sense there have been some "adjustments", but I have not paid close attention to the details.
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Old Nov 16, 16, 8:48 am
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Also, on Canadian Government site

https://travel.gc.ca/returning/customs/entering-canada
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Old Nov 16, 16, 9:07 am
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Oh I see. I thought
Originally Posted by ABG View Post
because they either don't have or did not originally travel outbound with their Canadian passport
Meant that not having your Canadian passport (with you) was somehow different from not traveling outbound with it, but I guess I'm just too exhausted to understand life right now. Sorry about that
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Old Nov 16, 16, 10:24 am
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MrsQQ and I came back from the US and had nothing but problems this weekend. She is a Canadian PR, had her valid card as usual but kept being asked for eTA. She is not eligible for an eTA
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Old Nov 16, 16, 11:32 am
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The issue is not just a lack of communication about this - and to be honest, it's been pretty clearly communicated according to the people I know who have gotten one (ie: those abroad). They were travelling AC if that makes a difference, other than this being an AC forum. I think it boils down to how closely people pay attention to the website and it's possible non-AC/LH (my only two experiences) don't make it very obvious.

It's a lack of knowledge from airport staff about how it works - as to yyz_atc_qq's point. I commented that I had no issues, and that's the point, it's yet again AC inconsistency and airport staff thinking they know best. I had a poor experience with LH myself where I was told it was my responsibility to understand the requirements - I do. Their staff do not.

The main issue with the eTA is it removes the loophole that allowed PRs to travel commercially abroad without a PR card - a card that unlike a passport can take MONTHS to obtain a new one (and can only be requested 6 months in advance) and only lasts 5 years. You now have to have one if you plane to fly back, just in case it's requested.

The only positive is it's $7/5 years which is < half the price of the ESTA for over twice as long. ($14US/2years). The form was quite a bit more offensive when I reviewed it, though since then the ESTA form has also tripled in length.

At least the ESTA is processed quickly though, from the people I know eTA's are processed fast if you are a visitor, if you have a work permit or PR application in, it seems to incur a manual check. And finding the details requested for all previous applications.

Best hope is Trudeau repeals this with the rest of his immigration reforms due in 2017. I believe someone spent a few billion setting it up.
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Old Nov 16, 16, 12:57 pm
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We can debate the usefulness (or lack thereof) of the eTA program until the cows come home, but the reality is that it remains the responsibility of travelers to inform themselves of all applicable entry requirements when going abroad. I have little sympathy for people who do not spend 30 seconds informing themselves of the requirements and are held up at the airport as a result. Especially people who are traveling for business and need to check whether they require a work permit.

As far as requiring dual citizens to get a Canadian passport - cry me a river. If you want to avail yourself of the rights and privileges of Canadian citizenship you also need to pay for the documentation. Even a birth certificate isn't free.
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Old Nov 16, 16, 1:10 pm
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Originally Posted by eigenvector View Post
We can debate the usefulness (or lack thereof) of the eTA program until the cows come home, but the reality is that it remains the responsibility of travelers to inform themselves of all applicable entry requirements when going abroad. I have little sympathy for people who do not spend 30 seconds informing themselves of the requirements and are held up at the airport as a result. Especially people who are traveling for business and need to check whether they require a work permit.

As far as requiring dual citizens to get a Canadian passport - cry me a river. If you want to avail yourself of the rights and privileges of Canadian citizenship you also need to pay for the documentation. Even a birth certificate isn't free.

A small imperfection in your excellent suggestion is that despite that internet thing and a wealth of information out there (on the Canadian government site and Air Canada's), a portion of the population either don't have a clue or don't care. I can't guess the percent of each.

I'm sure we recall in another thread earlier this year, the media news story about the couple and baby who went on vacation to the UK and then on to France where problems ensued as one of the adults had a Canadian passport that was to expire in a period of time that was shorter than that allowed for entry.

The couple complained no one told them or they didn't know.

Well, why not? Sure, it sounds a bit harsh, expecting those who choose to visit other countries not to take a moment to peek at the (actually) excellent travel resources that are available.

The eTA is a bit more challenging perhaps. Some rules may have changed along the way, but the information is there as per the link I posted and it's on AC's site.

I know the wild card might be people who book their travel on OTAs or with other agents who do not remind the pax what documents they need for travel, entry to another country and return back to Canada.

I know quite a few people who do not know that dual Canadian-American citizens are exempt from this eTA.
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Old Nov 16, 16, 1:38 pm
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Originally Posted by eigenvector View Post
the reality is that it remains the responsibility of travelers to inform themselves of all applicable entry requirements when going abroad. I have little sympathy for people who do not spend 30 seconds informing themselves of the requirements and are held up at the airport as a result. Especially people who are traveling for business and need to check whether they require a work permit.
Completely agree.
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Old Nov 16, 16, 1:41 pm
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Originally Posted by jc94 View Post
At least the ESTA is processed quickly though, from the people I know eTA's are processed fast if you are a visitor, if you have a work permit or PR application in, it seems to incur a manual check. And finding the details requested for all previous applications..
PR are NOT supposed to get an eTA. So how do you deal with airlines that keep asking for one when the CIC.gc.ca website says that PRs don't qualify
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Old Nov 16, 16, 1:49 pm
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Originally Posted by yyz_atc_qq View Post
PR are NOT supposed to get an eTA. So how do you deal with airlines that keep asking for one when the CIC.gc.ca website says that PRs don't qualify
2 options, depending on one's "pain threshold":

1. Pay the $7 (and consider it possible stress prevention)

2. Show the airline staff the Gov website page and/or printed version and see how that goes. If they were given instructions to follow that were incorrect, they will likely follow those instructions before accepting this:

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