In my years working with a Canada Immigrations Consultant, this is one of the first questions that any client who is interested in a Canada Visa asks; how long do I have to wait to get my Canada visa after submission?
Some say 3 weeks, some say 16 weeks, and we believed it took 64 days, if you submitted via the authorized representative online portal (which allows you to keep your passport ).You will possibly get as many answers to this question from as many people as you ask.
My default answer is, it takes anywhere from 60 days to 90 days.
But of course, I know that is not always true; there are applicants who got responses to their applications in around four weeks or less, while there are some who had to wait up to five months to get a response.
On many occasions, I visit a website by the VFS Global (the Canada application submission centre) supposedly dedicated to answering that question, and the average duration I get is 60 to 90 days; only difference is, the time stated on the website changes erratically, without prior notice.
This made me believe that there must be certain factors that can affect the processing times of your Canada visas, but these factors are not immediately obvious to the public.
Imagine the frustration; you have to resume at school or attend an even in Canada, you applied for your visa in the hopes that you will be granted, but you had to wait till after the event or your resumption date at school has passed before getting a response.
I have seen people in this kind of situation, hence from my experience; I came up with some suggestions which are listed below in no particular order of importance:
- Submit Complete Documents: Endeavour to submit complete and correct documents in your application. This is kind of obvious, but if you submit incomplete documents or applications, chances are high you would have to wait long for a response – which could in fact be a negative response.
- Apply ahead of time: It is important that you apply many months before the event or the school resumption date. Many applicants assume that the visa processing officer should notice that the date for their events or resumption is close and therefore expedite their application processing; many have been proven wrong, there is a slight chance you could get a response in time, but the most likely result is that you would wait till after the date to get your response, or if you are applying for a study permit, you may be asked to get a new resumption date from your school. It is advisable not to take this gamble, just submit your visa application way ahead of time.
- If possible, do your medicals upfront: When required (especially for students), it is advisable that you do your medical examinations upfront. Although I am usually careful giving this advice, as the medical examination comes with a separate fee and applications can still be and are refused despite having provided the results of medical examination. I give this advice to undergraduate applicants, who are heading to Canada for a pre-university or post-secondary school education – all other things being up to requirements, this class of applicants are more likely to get their visas, so they can take the advice to do an upfront medical examination just to speed up the processing.
Bonus: In addition, another factor that can affect the visa processing duration is the number of applications currently being treated by the processing officers. Just like other businesses have peak and off-peak periods, there are times of the year when visa application submissions are high and there are times when they are low. The peak of visa application submission is the mid-year periods, between May and August, particularly for students, so if you can, plan your application submission away from the middle of the peak periods.
To conclude, no one can tell you exactly how long it would take to process your Canada visa, but certain factors could militate against your application and when you get a response.
It is usually difficult to give an exhaustive list of possible scenarios and how to work your way around them; if you have questions about Canada visa or additional information, kindly write them in reply to this topic, so experts can help you and to benefit others as well.
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