canadian photo visa requirements

By Aleksandra

March 15, 2023

Canadian Visa Photo Requirements

Do you need to take a photos that are needed to apply for a Canadian passport or a visa? Are you wondering about the requirements? In this article you can learn more about all the details set by the Canadian government. Prepare earlier, and enjoy the hassle-free process of getting travel documents.

What type of photo is required for a Canada visa?

There are several photograph specifications for a Canadian visa photo:

  • The head should be centered within a frame.
  • You should have a neutral facial expression and be on a white background. You can’t frown or smile.
  • You need to have two identical, recent (not older than 6 months) photographs in color.
  • The photo should be clear, focused, and well-defined.
  • In the case of digital photos, you can’t change them in any way.
  • The full face must be square to the camera with a closed mouth.
  • Don’t wear sunglasses. If you have prescription glasses that are non-tinted, you can have them in the photo, but your eyes must be visible.
  • Cosmetic accessories are acceptable, but they can’t disguise your casual appearance.
  • Facial features can’t be obscured.
  • You can wear a head covering for religious reasons as long as the face is visible and without shadows.
  • The photo should be taken at a professional photo studio in person.
  • The own photo must show a full head facing the camera directly and a natural skin color.
  • Eyes must be open and visible. Red eyes and off-white background are not acceptable.
  • The length of the face from the chin to the crown of the head should be between 31 mm (11/4 inches) and 36 mm (17/16 inches).
  • The image of face and shoulders must be centered in the picture.

What size are Canada visa passport photos?

The sizes of acceptable photos are as follows:

  • The frame should have at least 35 mm x 45 mm (1 3/8″ x 1 3/4″).
  • The full face must be in the middle of the photo.
  • The head from the crown (top of the head) to the chin must be between 31 mm (1 1/4″) and 36 mm (1 7/16″).

Children’s photo requirements

Conditions for children’s photos are mostly the same as for adults. However, in addition:

  • Photos should only show the child’s head and shoulders.
  • The hands of parents or a child can’t be visible in the color photo.
  • No shadows on the face or in the background should be in the photo, as the facial features must be seen.
  • A newborn’s photo can be taken in a car with a white blanket placed over the seat.

How to take a photo for a visa?

The easiest method is to visit the nearest professional photo studio in person. Also, you can do it on your own using the SCIS Photo App. Whether the option you choose, the photo requirements must be met. Otherwise, your application will be rejected.

How to submit the photographs?

You need to provide two passport-style photographs that are identical and printed on plain, high-quality photographic paper if you submit photos with your application in person.

On the back of your photographs, write your full name, the date when a photo was taken (not printed), a guarantor’s signature, and a signed date (if applying for the first time).

You can also upload photos via the SCIS Photo App (only if you apply for a Secure Certificate of Indian Status). You need to download the app and follow the instructions.

Is the Canada visa photo the same as the US passport?

There are some differences when it comes to Canadian and US passport photographs:

  • The passport photo size in the US is a square (2 x 2 inches or 51 mm), while the Canadian passport photo is a rectangle (2 x 2 ¾ inches or 50 x 70 mm).
  • Canadians can wear glasses in the photo as long as the eyes are clearly visible, while Americans can’t have them (except for some rare medical cases).
  • The stamp of the photo studio should be on the back of the Canadian passport photos.
  • Besides, in the case of a new passport (the first one), the guarantor’s signature is required. In the US, the back of the photo is blank, and you don’t need a guarantor.
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Aleksandra is an experienced visa expert passionate about writing and creating professional content. She loves reading fantasy books, traveling, and board games. 📚🐱✨