In a statement, Sean Fraser, the Canadian Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship said the visa-free travel is extended to Antigua and Barbuda, St Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago, St Kitts-Nevis, Panama, Argentina, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Morocco, Seychelles, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Thailand and the Philippines.
While North Africa’s Morocco and East Africa’s Seychelles joined the list, Ghana, Nigeria the most populous African nation didn’t make the cut.
It said “An expansion of the electronic travel authorization better known as the eTA programs makes it easier for “known travelers” from those countries to come here for fun and business.”
It added that the expansion not only enhances convenience for travellers, it will also increase travel, tourism, and economic benefits, as well as strengthen global bonds with these 13 countries.
“The known travellers from these countries can save a lot of money as a result of the visa exemptions,” the statement read.
A visitor visa currently costs $100 per person and $500 for a family of five or more, but an eTA only costs seven dollars per person and is valid for as long as five years.
According to the government, introducing visa-free air travel will make it faster, easier, and more affordable for thousands of travellers to visit Canada for up to six months for either business or leisure.