How to Renew Permanent Residency Outside Canada

How to Renew Permanent Residency Outside Canada

A Canadian permanent resident is allowed to leave the country for an extended period of time. If the individual plans to return to Canada, they are required to present their permanent resideny card upon re-entry. The card confirms an individual has permanent resident status.

The majority of permanent resident cards last for five years. However, some permanent resident cards last for less than five years. If your permanent resident card expires, it doesn’t mean you have lost permanent resident status although it does mean you need to renew your Permanent Residency from outside Canada.

You must be in Canada to apply for a permanent resident card. If you are outside of Canada when your permanent resident card expires, you cannot apply for a new card.

However, you can apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD). If your PRTD is granted, then you can use it to re-enter Canada. The PRTD is valid for six months once it has been issued. You can only use the PRTD once. After returning to Canada, you need to apply for a new permanent resident card.

If you plan to apply for a PRTD, you must have permanent residence status in Canada. You must also be outside of the country.

The cost of the PRTD is just $50 CAD. To apply for the PRTD, send your application through the mail at your nearest Canadian Visa Application Center. You can also apply for the PRTD online if you are unable to mail the application.

You will need to send in your original passport for the application. You may also be called to attend a virtual or in-person interview. However, interviews do not take place in all cases. Successful applications will be granted a PRTD.


Requirements to apply for a permanent resident travel document


If you want to apply for a PRTD, you must:


  • Prove your identity
  • Confirm your permanent resident status
  • Meet the residency obligation for a permanent resident


A Canadian permanent resident must show and carry a valid permanent resident card or PRTD when they board a flight to Canada.


If you do not show a permanent resident card or PRTD, you will not be allowed to board your flight, train, bus, or boat to Canada. It is your responsibility to have a valid permanent resident card to return to Canada. It is your own responsibility to apply for a new permanent resident card.


Rermanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) eligibility


The following people can apply for a PRTD card:


  • Canadian citizens
  • Foreign Nationals who do not possess permanent resident status
  • Permanent residents with a valid permanent resident card
  • Permanent residents in Canada
  • Permanent residents who plan to renounce their permanent residence status
  • Past permanent residents who lost their permanent resident status


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Alexander King is a leading authority in the field of migration, holding a prominent role as a Head of Compliance at Migration Consultant LLC ( With years of expertise under his belt, King has guided countless individuals and families on their journey to immigrating to Australia and Canada, shaping countless lives with his professional advice and in-depth knowledge of immigration law and procedures.

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