What to Expect When Giving Biometrics in Canada

When immigrating to Canada, there are a number of steps and things to complete before successfully making the move, biometrics being one! This is a system built by the Canadian government to securely allow foreign nationals to enter Canada through a number of visas. Whether you are visiting, working, or applying for permanent residency, you may need to know more about giving biometrics which you can learn more about below!

Biometrics Cost

A fee of $85 CAD is payable per person for biometric enrollment. Families applying together will only pay a maximum biometric fee of up to $170 CAD. There is no fee for biometric verification

Who Needs To Give Biometrics

In most cases thoe applying for the following statuses would need to undergo fingerprinting and screening before traveling to Canada:

  • a visitor visa
  • a work permit or study permit (excluding US citizens)
  • permanent residence
  • refugee or asylum status
  • an extension of your stay in Canada (known as a visitor record)
  • work or study permit extension


COVID-19 Update: Anyone in Canada applying for temporary residence is exempt from giving biometrics. This temporary measure applies to you if you’re both of the following:

  • in Canada
  • applying or have an application in progress
    • to extend your study, work, or visitor visa
    • to restore your study, work, or visitor visa
    • for a visitor visa
    • for a temporary resident permit


Biometrics Exemptions

Additionally, the following individuals would be exempt from needing to provide biometrics:

  • Children under the age of 14
  • Applicants over the age of 79
  • Diplomats and officials traveling on official business
  • US visa holders transiting through Canada
  • Refugee claimants or protected persons who have already provided biometrics and are applying for a study or work permit
  • Temporary resident applicants who have a valid biometric enrollment on file

Why Do I Need To Give Biometrics to Immigrate?

The Canadian government is using this biometrics processing to ensure that the person seeking entry is the same person who was granted a visa, permit, or permanent residence by verifying fingerprints. This will help prevent individuals from using a stolen, borrowed, or altered visa or permit to enter Canada.

How Often Do I Need To Give Biometrics?

Visitor Visa, Work Permit, Study Permit – If you gave biometrics in the last 10 years and they’re still valid, you don’t have to give them again

Permanent Residency – If you’ve never given biometrics in the past, or it’s been longer than 10 years, you’ll need to give them when the biometric collection sites closest to you start offering biometric collection services again.

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