Hi all, I've received my passport with the visitor stamp and wanted to share my timeline & experience. I applied from the U.S. and I'm currently an H1B visa holder.
Application submitted online: 7/20/2019
Materials submitted: imm5257e form, old passport bio page and any page with a visa and/or stamps, new passport bio page and any page with a visa and/or stamps; 3 months of past bank statements and 3 most recent paychecks; digital photo; purpose of travel cover letter (stating my trip itinerary); imm5645eform; invitation letter from my Canadian friend; bio page of my Canadian friend's passport
Biometrics collection letter: 7/21/2019
At the time, the earliest online appointment I could book was August 2. Given that I was applying to attend a friend's wedding in Canada in the middle of August, I decided to attempt a walk-in. I got to a VAC near me on 7/22 right when the center opened and there were about 40 people in front of me in line. I explained at the reception that I was on a tight timeline and showed supporting documents. The guy turned me away but I decided to stay to see how long it would take the line to die down. It was raining outside and I was partly soaked so I think eventually the guy felt bad for me and let me stay. I saw him then turn away a family of three and 2 others for trying to do the same thing. Please don't do a walk-in if you can wait for things to process; go early or during lunch. The process takes about 10 minutes
Biometrics Enrollment date updated: 7/23/2019
Correspondence letter confirming biometrics enrollment: 7/29/2019
Passport request letter: 7/29/2019 (received email late night around 7PM ET)
UPS next-day delivery: 7/30/2019 send before 5PM; UPS tracking showed delivery on 7/31 at 10AM
I sent in the below:
1. 2 copies of the consent form (http://vfsglobal.ca/canada/USA/pdf/Consent-Form-TTS-English-L.pdf)
;: clarifications here: pages1 and 2 should be used obligatorily. Page 3 only sign if the Passport Owner needs to give permission to another person to make the delivery or collection of their passport. Page 4, You will not need to sign it, if you have already provided biometrics.
2. Money order of $19.90 made out to VFS Services (USA) Inc. - got one from USPS - need to pay with cash or debit card
3. Original Passport
4. I also included my plane tickets here and wrote that I would appreciate faster processing given I was flying in 1.5 weeks
5. Contact info (name, passport #, birth date, phone, email, address)
6. Prepaid return label: my local UPS guy helped me sort out the envelopes and suggested shipping my passport back to my office given my apartment has no doorman. It ended up being cheaper given the commercial address for my office!
Email update: 8/5/2019 "Visa application, tracking ID No. xxx has been dispatched to the IRCC Office, on 2019-08-05 11:38:44 PM GMT Standard Time for processing."
Email update: 8/6/2019 "Visa application, tracking ID No.xxx is under process at the IRCC Office."
Email update: 8/6/2019 "Visa application, tracking ID No. xxx– Your processed decision envelope has been dispatched from the IRCC Office, on 2019-08-06 05:26:53 PM GMT Standard Time to the Canada Visa Application Centre in USA, New York."
Email update: 8/7/2019 "The decision envelope for your application, tracking ID No. <refno> has been received from the IRCC Office on <scandate> at the Canada Visa Application Centre, and is ready for collection."
Email update: 8/7/2019 "Visa application, tracking ID No. xxx – Your processed decision envelope has been collected from the Canada Visa Application Centre in Canada Visa Application Centre, New York, on 2019-08-07 03:56:54 PM GMT Standard Time."
Passport received with Canada visa: 8/8/2019