This will depend on your disembarkation points, your nationality, and the individual visa policy of each country to be visited. Aside from that, the type of cruise and also the point of embarkation also have a massive influence on whether you need a visa or a travel authorization for an Alaska cruise.

Travelers are always advised to take into consideration all these factors to know if they need a Canadian visa for their Alaska Cruise. Note that visitors from countries who do not have visa-free entry to Canada will be expected to obtain a Canada visa instead of an eTA.

Canadian cruises can be a wonderful and mind-blowing adventure. Whether sailing along the coast of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island or having to deal with the icy Arctic, there is so much to see and enjoy. Cruise ships are renowned as a place to relax with luxurious accommodations.

A good number of cruise companies provide entertainment for the evenings in addition to a wide array of facilities for passengers. Cruising around Canada gives passengers a small bit of Canadian hospitality at very alluring port cities such as Halifax, Nova Scotia, Saguenay, and Quebec, and offers dramatic views of the Canadian fjords.

Whether or not you need a Canadian visa (or an eTA) for an Alaska cruise will depend on the point of embarkation and disembarkation and your nationality. Have it in mind that US citizens are not expected to obtain a visa for Canada if on a cruise, nor do they need to obtain an eTA for Canada.

Howbeit, if the traveler is eligible, they are advised to apply for the eTA, which tends to have a more streamlined registration process. If you are a non-US citizen (not Canadian) and are on a cruise between the US mainland and Alaska, you can choose to remain onboard the ship and not present yourself to Canadian immigration when the cruise stops in Canada.

If your nationality or passport is eligible for a visa waiver, then you can go through immigration. You only need to provide your passport to Canadian immigration to get into Canada, but if you require a visa, then it’s recommended you remain on board.

How to Obtain a Canadian Visa for Alaska Cruise

If you are a citizen of a country that requires a visa to enter Canada, then you will be expected to obtain a Canadian Transit visa for Alaska Cruise. There are two main ways to apply for this kind of Canadian visa: mail or online. Most often, it is recommended that you apply online to ensure that you don’t have to deal with processing delays and additional courier fees.

The transit and visitor visa is classified under Temporary Resident Visa (TRV). To apply for this sort of visa, you only need to complete the two-page application for a Temporary Resident Visa Made Outside of Canada or reach out to your nearest Canada Visa Office.

At the very top of the application, you will need to select the box noted “Transit.” You can select to mail this completed form to a Canada Visa Office or fill it out online. Also, remember that this visa application is free. During your application, you will be expected to provide your travel plans either from the Transportation Company or travel agent.

Immediately after your application is sent, officials will review the documents attached to it. If they feel it’s incomplete, your application will be rejected and your documents sent back. If your application is complete and satisfactory, you will be sent an update asking that you submit a Police clearance, a medical exam, and also choose an interview date.

To ensure that you fulfill all these processes and on time, it is recommended that you apply for your transit visa at least 30 days before your cruise departure date. In terms of where you can apply, you can apply for your transit visa from your country of residence.

How Do You Obtain an eTA For Alaska Cruise?

The Canada eTA is not needed to board a cruise ship, but you will require an eTA if you intend to fly into Canada to start your cruise at a Canadian port or if you need to transit through a Canadian airport on your way to start your cruise. Nevertheless, you will not need a Canada eTA for a cruise if you enter Canada by land or by boat before embarking on the cruise.

You will also not have to bother with an eTA if the cruise departs from the United States and you flew directly to the US beforehand or if you are on a trans-Atlantic cruise to Canada and arrive on Canadian soil by ship. The Canada eTA will not be required if you also intend to leave Canada by plane, but if any of your travel plans see you arriving at a Canadian airport by aircraft, then you will more or less have to pass through border control.

To obtain your eTA to transit through Canada, you have to provide your details by completing the Canadian eTA application form online. Note that this process only takes a few minutes and ensures that you don’t go to an embassy or consulate.

The eTA is processed quickly and is often received within 1 to 3 business days. It is electronically linked to the individual’s passport, and this allows for a faster and more convenient entry through border control upon arrival in Canada.


The Canadian government requires foreign citizens from most countries other than the U.S. to obtain a visa for entry into Canada. This law affects all cruises that make a port of call in Canada including most cruises to and from Alaska and the Pacific Coast. Failure to come with the required visa will result in denied boarding with no refund.