Picture this: you’ve got your Canadian visa, all the necessary paperwork in order, and your dreams set on studying or working in Canada.
But here’s the catch: the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) holds the key to your entry.
One wrong move, and you could find yourself on the next flight back home.
If the thought of dealing with the CBSA makes your head spin, worry not. I’ve got you covered.
As a fellow Canadian immigrant, I’ve uncovered the crucial six questions they may ask you at the airport when you come to Canada, how to answer them correctly, and most importantly, how to ace them.
But that’s not all. You’ll also discover what the CBSA expects from you and the things you should avoid during your interrogation.
Get ready for an undercover operation as we delve into the world of the CBSA.”
What is the Meaning of CBSA?
When you arrive at a Canadian International Airport, you will encounter the CBSA, which stands for Canada Border Services Agency.
They play a crucial role as the gatekeepers between you and Canada.
The CBSA officers are trained to assess and question immigrants entering Canada.
They possess the ability to observe body language and detect any signs that raise suspicions about the information you provide.
Therefore, it is important to be prepared.
Regardless of your background, the CBSA has the authority to grant or deny your entry into Canada.
Even if you have all the necessary documents and a valid job offer, your decision is not solely based on those factors.
Numerous well-qualified students, employees, and immigrants have been denied entry to Canada due to incorrect answers or behaving in a manner that raised suspicions at the CBSA checkpoint.
Before we delve into the six questions you may be asked when arriving in Canada for work and how to respond to them accurately, let’s discuss a few things you should keep in mind while in the interrogation room.
6 things that May Positively or Negatively Affect you at CBSA
All it takes is one mistake and you’re out.
Let’s face it, the appearance of the CBSA is killing and the butterflies won’t stop rejoicing.
But here are your safe anchors:
1: Direct band Concise Answers:
Answer what you are asked, and cut out the extras, they do not care. You will be implicating yourself in doing so.
2: Matching Answers:
Make sure the answers you’re providing match the information in your application letters or any letter at all.
If you have ever submitted any information about yourself to the US embassy, make sure what you’re giving to the CBSA matches it, these guys share information. Always be intentional about the information you give.
3: Do not Argue
Here, it is not the place for human activists and it talks about twisting, being nice, and being passive.
Don’t give them a reason to check your device; that involves you not trying to show them any information from your device, as you may risk showing what shouldn’t be seen. Put your phone in plane mode.
But if they ask to see your device, please don’t argue. On this note, make sure there’s nothing malicious on your device. Corporate fully.
4: Mind Your Body Language:
The best posture to assume is calm and steady, maintaining eye contact while communicating with the CBSA.
Tapping your legs, biting your fingers, and continuously rubbing your palms sends suspicion.
You don’t have to demonstrate while answering a question. Just be calm and gentle.
5: Understand Before Answering:
Here, communication is key; answering it wrong or nearly is too risky. If you don’t understand English or French, request a translator.
However, before requesting a translator, make sure your language proficiency is below 5.
Otherwise, you have no business with a translator. That’s why you must not hype any of your details to appear qualified.
6: Know Your Documents
Be ready to repeat the exact details in your application form or documents at any time.
Know the details of your purpose for entering Canada; know your employer’s details; or, as a student, know your school, scholarship program, and more.
Always go through your documents so that you won’t fumble.
6 Questions They May Ask You at the Airport When You Come to Canada and How to Answer Them Correctly
This section is mainly for students and employees immigrating to Canada.
The questions may be more; however, you won’t miss out on these 6 questions they may ask you at the airport when you come to Canada.
Read up to learn how to answer them correctly:
6 Questions for Students:
- Which School are you going to be studying in Canada?
- Which program are you enrolled in at this school?
- What is the duration of your study in Canada?
- If your program is a 2 year program, what are you going to do to pay for your tuition in the 2nd year?
- Where would you be studying or what would be your address in Canada?
- Who will be paying for your expenses here? Or, did you already pay your tuition fees?
The Answers to the 6 Questions for Students
PS: no smart talking; hit the nail on the head.
Q 1: Which school are you going to be studying at in Canada?
Tips: you’re expected to know the name of the school you will be studying in. Let’s say you applied to the University of Toronto.
Answer: University of Toronto.
Q 2: Which program are you enrolled in at this school?
Tips: Just tell them the name of the scholarship package you’re enrolled in. For example, it’s the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship.
Answer: the Lester B. Pearson International Scholarship.
Q3: What is the duration of your study in Canada?
Tips: Only give them the number of years that you’re staying. For example, 1 year
Answer: One year.
Q4: If your program is a 2-year program, what are you going to do to pay for your tuition in the 2nd year?
Tips: This question is a trap; do not say I will be working to sponsor myself in Canada in the 2nd year.
Despite your study permit, it includes working part-time. Remember that your application states that you have enough funds to sponsor your stay and return from Canada.
1: I have sufficient funds in my account to sponsor my tuition fee in the 2nd year of studying in Canada, as proven in my statement of account.
2: I have family in my home country sending my funds regularly that I will use to sponsor tuition in the 2nd year of studying in Canada.
PS: Be ready to show proof of whatever you’ve claimed.
Q5: Where would you be studying or what would be your address in Canada?
Tips: Give them the address of where you’ll be lodging. If you have booked an apartment with Airbnb, if it’s a shared apartment, or if it’s a hotel, please share the address and any signed documents and address.
Answer: I will be staying at [address of your lodge]. Here is proof that you have been granted accommodation.
Show them your proof of accommodation. If it’s a shared document, get ready to make phone calls and provide rock-hard proof.
Q6: Who will be paying for your expenses here, or did you already pay for your tuition fees?
Tips: Go ahead and show them your proof of payment and source, not funds. They would love to see them.
Whether you made a minimum payment or a full payment, show them documents that back them up.
What is the role of the Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) at the airport?
The CBSA screens and processes individuals entering Canada at the airport, determining entry eligibility.
Can having a Canadian visa and the necessary documents guarantee entry into Canada?
No, entry into Canada is ultimately decided by CBSA officers based on various factors.
What are some important factors to consider when facing the CBSA at the airport?
When facing the CBSA at the airport, it is important to:
- Provide direct and concise answers without unnecessary elaboration.
- Ensure your answers align with the information provided in your application or any previous submissions.
- Avoid arguing with or being confrontational with the officers.
- Maintain a calm and steady body language, avoiding suspicious behaviors.
- Seek clarification if you do not understand a question, but only if your language proficiency is below a certain level.
- Familiarize yourself with the details in your application form and supporting documents to avoid any inconsistencies or confusion.
When you’re being questioned by the CBSA, it’s important to have the right documents to support your claims.
Actions speak louder than words, so make sure you have valid documents to back up what you say.
During your conversation with the CSBA, it’s important to avoid anything that might raise suspicion, like biting your nails or tapping on something repeatedly. Stay calm and maintain a natural posture.
I’ve provided you with information about the six questions they may ask you at the airport when you come to Canada and how to answer them correctly.
However, be prepared for additional questions and do your research to be well-informed while you’re organizing everything.
Don’t forget to bring a good book along.
It can be a helpful companion on your journey. Good luck!