Transiting through Canada with an ETA
When you wish to transit through Canada, an ETA is required for a transfer. The procedure for applying for an ETA in Canada is simple and can be completed online.
Get an ETA to travel to Canada
When you travel to Canada, an ETA Canada is mandatory from the moment you enter Canada or if you are only stopping over or transiting through Canada.
There is no distinction between a flight from France to the United States via Canada and a flight from the United States to France via Canada. However, a number of conditions must be taken into account.
Exception for transit if you do not disembark
If you are travelling to Canada on a transit flight to Chicago and you will not disembark in Canada, then an ETA is not required. This applies when the flight is simply stopping to refuel, which is less and less common. Remember that you will only be allowed to board if you also comply with all applicable US immigration regulations. This often means that you will need to apply for an ESTA USA. However, if you are arriving in Canada for travel to Latin or South America, then in Canada you will need an ETA.
The purpose of your trip does not affect your ETA
Whether you are travelling for tourism, business or simply in transit does not affect your application. An ETA is valid for a maximum of 5 years. It allows unlimited travel. Once you have a valid ETA, then you can use it to transit through Canada as often as you like.
What are the alternatives?
If you have a Canadian (or US) passport or a Canadian visa, then an ETA application is not necessary. Also, it is not necessary to apply for an ETA if you already have one for study purposes.
If you do not leave the airport
If you do not intend to leave the airport while in Canada, you must still apply for a valid ETA. An ETA entitles you to stay in Canada for 6 months. Therefore, you can leave the airport at any time during your trip if you wish to visit Canada. For example, you can stay overnight, but you can also go on holiday.