Canada is a popular destination for visitors, with over 20 million people visiting each year. If you are planning to invite a friend or relative to visit you in Canada, it is important to check whether travellers from their country are required to obtain a visitor visa. This information can be found on the Government of Canada website (see link below).
If a visa is needed, you will also require an invitation letter, which is a letter provided by a Canadian citizen or permanent resident inviting a friend or family member to come and visit Canada.
Understand the Purpose of an Invitation Letter for a Canadian Visa
The purpose of an invitation letter for a Canadian visa is to provide the visa officer with important information about the person being invited, including their name, date of birth, and contact information. It also serves as proof that the person you’re inviting has a genuine reason for visiting Canada and that they will have a place to stay and the financial means to support themselves during their stay.
• Make sure your letter is well-organized
When writing an invitation letter, it’s essential to ensure your letter is well-organized and easy to read. This will help the visa officer understand your request and make a quicker decision. Use bullet points or numbered lists when possible to ensure all the information is clearly presented.
• Tailor your letter to the specific situation
Your invitation letter should be tailored to the specific situation, including information about the number of people living in your home and the relationship to the person being invited.
• Provide all the required information specified by the Government of Canada
It is very important to consult the Government of Canada website, which provides a checklist of all of the information required in a letter of invitation (see link below). Check this information every time you write a letter of invitation, as the requirements can change. As well, there are different types of visitor visas, such as a super visa, which may have different requirements. You need to ensure that your letter is tailored to the specific visa you are applying for.
• Use a professional tone
When writing an invitation letter, it’s essential to use a professional tone. Avoid using casual language or slang, and make sure your letter is free of errors. This will help ensure that your letter is taken seriously.
• Explain the purpose of the visit
Include a brief statement about the purpose of the visit. It could be to visit family or friends, attend a wedding, or for sightseeing. This will give the visa officer a better understanding of the reason for the visit and make it easier for them to process the visa application.
• Include contact information for both parties
Include the full name, dates of birth, and contact information for both the person being invited and the person writing the letter. This will help the visa officer to verify the identity of both parties.
• Detail the length of stay and accommodation arrangements
Provide information about the length of stay, the dates of travel, and details of the accommodation arrangements during the stay in Canada. This will help the visa officer understand the visitor’s plans and assess their ability to support themselves during their stay in Canada.
• Provide proof of financial support
Include supporting documents that prove the visitor has enough financial support for their stay in Canada. This could be a letter from an employer, a bank statement, or the person writing the invitation letter committing to financially supporting the visitor. This will help the visa officer to assess the visitor’s ability to support themselves during their stay in Canada.
• Include any additional relevant information
Include any additional information that may be useful for the visa officer. For example, you can indicate if the person being invited is a minor, if the person writing the letter is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, or if there are any other family members or friends in Canada.
• Proofread and edit your letter before sending
It is essential to proofread and edit your letter before sending it. This will help ensure that your letter is free of errors and that the visa officer can understand your request. Remember, a well-written letter can make a big difference in processing the visa invitation letter.
• Determine whether you need to have the invitation letter notarized
Some visa offices require that invitation letters submitted to them be notarized. The Government of Canada recommends that visa applicants check with the office where they will be submitting the invitation letter to determine whether notarization is required. Notarizing the letter is a way to prove to the visa officer that it has been signed by the appropriate person. Notarization involves signing the letter in the presence of a notary public, an official who is required to verify your identity and witness your signature. It can also involve making a declaration that the contents of the document are true.
In conclusion, writing an effective invitation letter for a Canadian visa can be integral to the visitor visa application process. It is essential to understand the letter’s purpose, ensure it is well-organized and easy to read, tailor the letter to the specific situation, provide all the required information by checking the Government of Canada checklist, and use a professional tone. It is also important to proofread and edit the letter before sending it.
We have knowledgeable and professional Notaries who can prepare and/or notarize letters of invitation. Remember to bring your original valid government-issued photo identification with you, as the notary will need to see this in order to verify your identity.
Red Seal Notary has convenient walk-in offices in Toronto, Ottawa, and Mississauga where you can have letters of invitation notarized. Please visit our website at www.redsealnotary.com or contact our helpful call center at 1-800-922-7325 to make appointments to notarize documents at locations across the country.
Information on Letters of Invitation and Sample template from Red Seal Notary
Government of Canada List of Countries that Require Visitor Visas
Government of Canada Visa Invitation Letter Checklist