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Optica Advanced Photonics Congress

Visa Information

Customs Information for Entry to Canada

Make sure to carry proper identification and documents while traveling to the congress. Optica strongly encourages you to apply for any additional documentation (i.e., visa) no later than 6 months prior to the event, as the application process can be lengthy.

All visitors to Canada must have a valid travel document, such as a passport.

Some visitors may also need:

Electronic Travel Authority (eTA)

An Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) is an entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals traveling to Canada by air. An eTA is electronically linked to a traveler’s passport. It is valid for up to five years or until the passport expires, whichever comes first. A new eTA is needed when you get a new passport.

A valid eTA enables you to travel to Canada as often as you want for short stays (normally for up to six months at a time). An eTA is not needed for travel within Canada.



Optica recommends a 6-month lead time to have visas processed. Please plan accordingly.

A visitor visa (also called a temporary resident visa) is an official document that is placed in your passport. It shows that you meet the requirements needed to enter Canada. Most travelers need a visitor visa to travel to Canada. You may also need one if you are transiting through a Canadian airport en route to your final destination.


Letter of Invitation

Individuals requiring letters of invitation to obtain travel visas can complete the online form. 

Important Information
  • Your name must be listed exactly as it appears on your passport. Any differences between the name on your passport and the name on your invitation letter or other documentation could lead to a delay and/or denial of your visa.
  • If you are presenting a paper, include the title and session in which the paper will be presented. If you are exhibiting, please indicate so in your request.
  • Each individual requesting an invitation letter must fill out a separate form.
  • All letters will be sent in PDF form to the email address provided. If you require a paper copy, please provide a courier account number or credit card number with expiration date with the original request.
  • Optica reserves the right to request further information regarding the company or affiliation of the attendee to ensure the validity of requests. Meeting attendees do not need to wait until their paper is accepted to request a visa invitation letter.
  • Optica is unable to contact embassies in support of an individual attempting to gain entry to attend a meeting.
  • We recommend that you secure your travel visa before registering for the meeting as cancellations after the pre-registration cutoff may result in a cancellation fee.

Note: Please allow up to 15 business days to process your request for an invitation letter.

For questions about the visa invitation letter application process, send an email to

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