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Which Visa Application Centres (VACs) are open during COVID-19? | Moving2Canada

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Which Visa Application Centres (VACs) are open during COVID-19? | Moving2Canada

When COVID-19 was identified as a global pandemic in March, 2020, the Canadian government took unprecedented steps to limit the spread of the virus. This included closing Canada’s Visa Application Centres, commonly known as VACs, all around the world. As many countries around the world regain some control over the spread, VACs are reopening with limited services in some countries. Update — September 14: Certain permanent residence applicants applying from inside Canada are being contact individually by Service Canada to schedule in-person appointments for biometrics. Applicants are being contact in the order in which applications were submitted (oldest applications first). At this time, applicants cannot book biometrics appointments unless they are first contacted by Service Canada. This is according to an automated message on the IRCC phone lines.Jump ahead to find out what you need to know about VACs.Skip to: Which VACs are open right now? What services are VACs offering right now? What measures do VACs have in place to limit infection risk? Biometrics from inside Canada during COVID-19 Which VACs are open right now?Canada has reopened VACs in some countries around the world, although with limited services. To get the most up-to-date information, you can look up your VAC using the VAC search tool from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).During our latest update, the following countries had opened some or all of their VACs with limited services.VACs are subject to opening and closing without advance notice. For the most up-to-date information, refer to the IRCC VAC search tool. Refer to your VAC’s website to determine which services are available.AlbaniaAlgeriaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahrainBarbadosBosnia and HerzegovinaBurkina FasoBurma (Myanmar)CambodiaChinaEgyptEthiopiaFijiFinlandFranceGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGreeceGuyanaHong KongIndonesia (closed, but accepting some documents by mail)IraqIrelandIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJordanKenyaKuwaitLebanonMacedoniaMadagascarMalaysiaMauritiusMexico (closed, but accepts some documents by mail)MoldovaMongoliaMoroccoNew ZealandNigeriaOmanPakistanPolandQatarRomaniaRussia (closed, but accepts some documents by mail)RwandaSaint LuciaSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSingaporeSouth AfricaSouth KoreaSpainSri LankaSwedenTaiwanTanzaniaThailandThe NetherlandsTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited States (New York)VietnamZimbabwe (closed, but accepts some documents by mail)What services are VACs offering right now?As certain VACs reopen around the world, they are offering limited services. The services offered by each VAC vary, so be sure to check the website for your VAC. You can find your VAC using the IRCC VAC search tool.At this moment, VACs will not accept or process paper applications for visitor visas, study permits, or work permits. You can still apply for these things, but you must submit your application online.Get the latest immigration news! What measures do VACs have in place to limit infection risk?IRCC has put in special measures to protect the health and safety of staff members and clients. Common health and safety measures implemented at VACs may include:use of hand sanitizer by staff and clientslimiting the number of people allowed inside the VAC at any given timechecking temperature of staff and clientsuse of gloves, face masks and face shields by stafffrequent cleaning of the VACYou can look up the measures in place at your VAC by using IRCC’s VAC search tool.How do I get biometrics if I’m applying from inside Canada?Update — September 14: Certain permanent residence applicants applying from inside Canada are being contact individually by Service Canada to schedule in-person appointments for biometrics. Applicants are being contact in the order in which applications were submitted (oldest applications first). At this time, applicants cannot book biometrics appointments unless they are first contacted by Service Canada. This is according to an automated message on the IRCC phone lines.To get biometrics from inside Canada, most applicants must follow the guidelines on this page. However, on July 15, Canada announced that certain temporary resident applicants who are inside Canada will be exempt from the requirement to provide biometrics (Source: IRCC). This is a temporary measure. The exemption includes those who are applying from within Canada:to extend your stay as a student, worker or visitorto restore your status as a student, worker or visitorfor a work or study permitfor a visitor visafor a temporary resident permitAs well, this temporary measure does not apply if you are outside Canada. Those applying for permanent residence from within Canada are still required to provide biometrics (note that biometrics deadlines for PR applicants are extended due to COVID-19).

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