Can a Canadian eTA be cancelled?

Updated: Jan 04, 2024 | Tags: Cancel eTA Application, Canada eTA Status

Learning about the process of Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) cancellation in Canada can be complex. Whether it’s due to a change in travel plans, passport renewals, or other reasons, understanding the specifics of how and if an eTA can be cancelled is essential for any traveller. This article aims to provide a detailed exploration of the eTA cancellation process, including timelines, options, and likely outcomes.

Can a Canadian eTA be cancelled?
Can a Canadian eTA be cancelled?

What is a Canadian eTA?

An eTA is a requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals travelling to Canada by air. It's linked electronically to your passport and typically valid for five years or until your passport expires. Understanding the nature and conditions of an eTA is crucial before delving into the cancellation process.

Can an eTA be canceled?

Manual cancellations initiated by the applicant

An eTA cannot be canceled once the application is submitted. If you have already finished and paid for your application, you cannot retract it. Nor can an eTA be manually cancelled by the applicant once it is approved and issued. the Canadian government maintains the right to revoke or invalidate an eTA, but this is typically done under specific circumstances.

If you entered your home address incorrectly or made a mistake in another field, you will have to wait until you receive an email about your eTA status before you can update the information. Furthermore, your mistake may cause your application to be rejected. If so, you will need to wait to receive a rejection email before reapplying with the correct information.

Government-initiated cancellations

False information

If it's discovered that an eTA was obtained based on false or misleading information, it will be revoked by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Change in circumstances

Significant changes in the applicant's circumstances that affect eligibility. This could lead to eTA cancellation.

Security or health risks

If the applicant is deemed a security or health risk these could also be deemed reasonable enough to warrant eTA cancellation.

Timelines and options

Whether you want to cancel your eTA because of a change of plans, a mistake, or another reason, you cannot retract your application once it is submitted. So, what can you do instead?

Waiting for automatic expiry

An eTA is automatically cancelled if the linked passport expires. In this case, a new eTA application is necessary when a new passport is issued.

Other options for trying to terminate an eTA application or getting a refund

  • If you realize that you are not actually eligible for an eTA at all, then you can assume that your eTA application will be rejected. You can apply for a Canadian visa to enter Canada for your travel purposes.
  • If you wish to cancel your application or eTA because you no longer want to travel to Canada, there is no option for a refund or revoking your eTA unless your eligibility circumstances change, visit the eTA eligibility and requirements page for more information. Your eTA will still be linked to your passport. The good news is that if your application is approved, you could go visit Canada spontaneously sometime while your eTA is still valid.
  • If you have ordered your eTA through a third-party website, contact the website support team for further information on getting a refund.

Implications of eTA cancellation

Travel plans

A cancelled eTA means you cannot travel to Canada using that authorization. A new application would be necessary for future travel.

Immigration records

The reasons for cancellation will be logged on your immigration records and may affect future Canadian visa or eTA applications. Depending on information sharing agreements between governments, this information may also be shared with other non-Canadian authorities.

How to prevent eTA cancellations

Provide accurate Information - Ensure all details in your eTA application are accurate and truthful to avoid cancellation.

Understanding the conditions of travelling on an eTA - Understand the activities permitted under an eTA and adhere to them strictly.

Handling a cancelled eTA

Reapplying - If your eTA is cancelled, you may need to reapply, ensuring that the reasons for the previous cancellation are addressed.

Seeking professional advice - In complex cases, consulting with an immigration lawyer or advisor may be beneficial.

Can an eTA be refunded?

If you decide not to use your eTA, or if you need to reapply, can your eTA be refunded? Again, the answer is no. Once you pay the processing fee, the service is performed within minutes. Even if your eTA is flagged by the electronic processing system and has to be manually-processed over a few days or weeks, the non-refundable payment stands. Withdrawn approved application are also non-refundable. However, if you have applied through a third-party, you may have the option of a refund. Contact the website support team where you placed your order for further information.


While the direct cancellation of a Canadian eTA by the applicant is not standard, understanding the scenarios in which an eTA can be cancelled and the steps to take afterward is essential. Maintaining the integrity of your application and staying informed about the conditions of your travel authorization are key to avoiding issues. In the event of a cancellation, promptly addressing the underlying reasons and seeking professional advice can guide you in successfully reapplying for an eTA or exploring other travel options to Canada.