Apply for a Visa
Getting the Information You Need to Apply for a Visa
All of the information an individual needs to apply for a visa and schedule a visa appointment can be found on our website, U.S. Department of State and other U.S. government online resources, or through our toll-free visa information and appointment scheduling telephone service. Please beware of online or private services offering expedited appointments or visa assistance. In many cases these businesses offer services for a fee that an applicant can do on their own for no charge. In some instances these businesses provide inaccurate information that may negatively impact an individual's visa application.
Canadian citizens do not need a non-immigrant visa to travel to the United States in most circumstances
Canadian citizens may apply for most non-immigrant entries (i.e. as visitors, temporary workers or students) without a visa, directly at a U.S. port of entry through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Customs and Border Protection (CBP). We strongly urge Canadian citizens to review the information at the State Department website before paying the non-refundable visa application (MRV) fee and scheduling a visa appointment as fees erroneously paid are not refundable.
It is generally advisable for short-term visitors to Canada to apply in their home country for a U.S. visa
If you have no long-term status in Ontario (i.e. you are a visitor and not a permanent resident, immigrant, refugee, student or worker in Canada), the best place to apply for a U.S. visa is in your home country. It is usually more difficult for short-term visitors to Canada to demonstrate that they qualify for a visa and are often refused. The U.S. embassy in your home country can provide visa information specific to your nationality. Here is a full list of U.S. embassy websites.
The next available visa appointment at the U.S. Consulate General in Toronto is usually four weeks from the current date. Individuals needing visas should schedule an appointment well in advance of their travel plans to the United States. The current wait time for a visa appointment at our office can be found online at the State Department website.
Scheduling a Visa Appointment
The U.S. Consulate General in Toronto handles all visa applications by appointment only. Visa appointments can be made online or by phone from Canada at 437-887-1448(calling from the greater Toronto area) or 703-439-2319 (calling from the United States). There are no service fees or additional toll charges for the web or telephone services beyond standard data and telephone rates.
Applicants residing in Canada who need to travel to the U.S. expeditiously for humanitarian reasons, for education and to attend important meetings, conferences and cultural events may request that their visa appointment be expedited. We receive requests for expedited appointments in excess of our ability to grant each and every request and many requests are denied. Additional information about expedited appointments can be found on the U.S. Visa Service website.
NOTE: An appointment must first be scheduled (even if it is beyond the date needed to travel) before we can consider a request to expedite it. Also, an expedited appointment does not guarantee issuance of a visa. An applicant with an expedited visa appointment still must prove to the satisfaction of the interviewing officer that he/she qualifies for a visa under U.S. law.
Access to the Consulate is limited
We must see all visa applicants in person, with the exception of applicants for diplomatic (A) visas. An applicant who has special needs (minor children, elderly or disabled) or cannot communicate in English may bring one helper or translator. Due to space limitations and security requirements we cannot permit entry to applicants' relatives, friends, travel agents, advisors or attorneys. Minor children of applicants with a scheduled appointment are permitted to enter with their parents.
Entry for visa appointments and American citizen services is at 225 Simcoe Street, at the rear of the Consulate. The Consulate is located at 360 University Avenue in downtown Toronto. The nearest subway stop is Osgoode.
All applicants must undergo security screening prior to entering the Consulate. Please review the security procedures before visiting the Consulate.
Please come to your appointment on time and fully prepared
Take time before your visa appointment to ensure that you have all of the information required for the type of visa for which you are applying. Applicants who come unprepared may be turned away and may be required to reschedule their appointment.
EACH VISA APPLICANT IN TORONTO, REGARDLESS OF AGE/GENDER/NATIONALITY, MUST BRING SEPARATELY:
- Your appointment letter.
- Passport or travel document valid for 6 months beyond your U.S. stay.
- Confirmation sheet for the DS-160 online non-immigrant visa application. All applicants applying for nonimmigrant visas in Toronto must use the new DS-160 application form, which is accessible online.
- If you did not upload your photo to the application, bring a front view 2"x2" passport photo taken within 6 months of your visa interview.
- Original (no photocopies) proof of current visa/immigration status in Canada (e.g.,Permanent Resident Card, student visa, or work permit)
- Students or exchange visitors (F, M, J): I-20, I-20M or DS-2019, and SEVIS fee receipt, paid at www.fmjfee.com, and proof of funds, e.g., six months of bank statements.
- Temporary workers or transfers (H, L, O, P, Q, R): notice of action (I-797).
- For any scientific or high-technology related travel: a letter explaining what you do outside of the United States, your intentions in the United States, your current resume and list of your publications.
- If you were previously in the United States, any documents attesting to your status.
- If you were ever arrested, criminal/court records pertaining to any arrest or conviction, even if later pardoned.
- If you do not speak English well enough to communicate with Consulate staff, a translator to assist you with the interview.
- Translation into English of any non-English document.
Please note that a consular officer may request additional information or documents not included on this list, including student transcripts or school enrollment letters, evidence of your employment, or evidence of other social and economic ties abroad.
I was approved a visa, now what happens?
If the interviewing consular officer informed you that your visa has been approved and your case does not require any additional administrative processing, your visa will be printed in one to two business days and placed in your passport. Your passport and visa will be turned over to our courier service, Loomis, and delivered to the Loomis location you selected when you scheduled your appointment for you to pick up. You may log onto your personal profile on our scheduling website to see whether your passport has been delivered to the Loomis location. Questions about passport delivery should be directed to the Consulate's visa scheduling service by telephone at 437-887-1448(calling from the greater Toronto area) or at 703-439-2319 (calling from the United States). There is no charge for calls to these numbers beyond standard data and long distance telephone rates.
Some cases require additional administrative processing before we can issue the visa to the applicant. Applicants whose cases require this additional processing will be advised at the time of their interview. Most administrative processing is resolved within 60 days of the visa interview. When administrative processing is required, the timing will vary based on individual circumstances of each case. Visa applicants are reminded to apply early for their visa, well in advance of the anticipated travel date.
How to Contact Us
The best way to contact us is through our e-mail address at: TRTNIV@state.gov.
Inquiries sent to this address will receive an automatic reply that answers many of the common questions we receive. E-mails that require an individual response will generally receive one in two to four business days.
Our telephone numbers are:
- 437-887-1448 (calling from the greater Toronto area) for general visa information and to schedule visa appointments. There is no charge for calls to this number.
- 703-439-2319 (calling from the United States) for general visa information and to schedule visa appointments. There is no charge for calls to this number.
- 416-595-1700 for the Consulate switchboard operator, who has no visa, immigration, passport or citizen services information.
Our Canadian mailing address is:
360 University Avenue, Toronto, ON, M5G 1S4, CANADA
Please see the following websites for further information:
- General U.S. visa and consular matters in Canada.
- Information from the U.S. Department of State on visas, passports and international travel.
- Visa information and to schedule visa appointments online.
- Information about entry requirements for the United States, border wait times and ESTA .
- U.S. citizenship and immigration information.
- Links to U.S. federal, state and local agency websites.
- Links to Canadian federal, provincial and local agency websites.
Important Information for U.S. Residents
Due to increasingly heavy demand by Canada-based visa applicants, U.S. visa processing posts in Canada are unfortunately extremely limited in the ability to accept visa applications from U.S. residents during the peak demand period of June through August. Appointments for visa renewals for U.S. residents who are currently studying or working in the U.S. will be more readily available during non-peak periods in October and November, and January through May.
For information on options for extending or renewing authorization to continue studies or employment while in the U.S., contact U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Many travelers to Canada and Mexico are eligible for automatic revalidation at a Port of Entry without a new visa.
U.S.-based applicants who need a visa are encouraged to schedule an appointment in their home country. Information on worldwide appointment availability is found on the State Department's website, www.Travel.State.gov.