Application process - Business Visitors

Business Visitors

There are a number of reasons why an individual may come to Canada as a business visitor, including:

  • Attending business meetings, conferences, conventions, fairs, etc

  • Buying Canadian goods or services on behalf of a foreign entity

  • Taking orders for goods or services

  • Providing after-sales service, excluding hands-on work in the construction trades

  • Being trained by a Canadian parent company for work outside of Canada

  • Training employees of a Canadian subsidiary of a foreign company


The Business Visitor category facilitates entry for individuals (without a work permit) who engage in business or trade activities in Canada but will not enter the Canadian labour market. Individuals who plan to enter the Canadian labour market may require a Temporary Work Permit. In addition, a Business Visitor may still require a Temporary Resident Visa or an eTA (electronic Travel Authorization) to enter Canada on a temporary basis.


There are a number of subdivisions under this category, but all business visitors must meet the following general criteria:

  • There must be no intent to enter the Canadian labour market (there will be no gainful employment in the country)

  • The worker’s activity in Canada must be international in scope (it is assumed that a business visitor will engage in cross-border activity of some sort)

  • For business visitors in Canada working for a foreign employer, the following criteria are assumed

    • The primary source of the worker’s compensation is outside of Canada

    • The principal place of employment is located outside of Canada

    • The employer’s profits are accrued outside of Canada

When traveling to Canada, a business visitors should be prepared to present immigration officials with documentation that attests to their desired status in Canada. This documentation will vary on a case-by-case basis. Often, items such as a letter of support from a parent company or letter of invitation from a Canadian company can help to bolster one’s likelihood of acceptance as a business visitor.  

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