1. News & Issues

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:


was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing About.com with others!

Taking Guns to Canada? Beware!
Tough new Canadian gun control laws apply equally to visitors
 Join the Discussion
"Are all the extra deaths and injuries really an acceptable price to pay for the privilege of having a weapon?"

"The fact that guns are easily available to criminals through illegal channels just illustrates what a failure gun control is."


  Related Resources
• Gun Control News
• US Brady Act
• Canadian Gun Laws
Who Can't Own Guns
 From Other Guides
• Guns and the Law
• Canadian Gun Laws
Canadian Gun Laws II
Canadians Register
Are You a Gun Lover?
Canada - The Dark Side
Gun Law Fiasco
 Elsewhere on the Web
• Required Forms
• Restricted & Prohibited
About.com Poll
Should US gun owners be required to register with state or federal government?


Current Results

The Canadian government is warning Americans bringing firearms across the border, or even borrowing guns while in Canada, that the new Canadian Firearms Act applies equally to visitors.

Canada's tough new gun control law, which took effect Jan. 1, 2001, requires individuals to obtain licenses to posses or purchase either guns or ammunition. By Jan. 1, 2003, registration of all guns in Canada will be required. The Firearms Act regulations apply to the importing, exporting, possession, use, storage, display and transportation of all firearms, and are in effect across the country.

As of January 1, 2001, the procedures for bringing firearms into Canada, or for borrowing firearms while in Canada, change as a result of mandatory license requirements for all firearms owners and users in Canada.

Canadian firearms laws severely restrict the types of guns persons can legally posses. In addition, the laws apply equally to both Canadian citizens and to anyone bringing or shipping guns into Canada, or borrowing guns while in Canada.

Under the Canadian Firearms Act, the three classes of firearms are:

  1. Non-restricted (most ordinary rifles and shotguns);
  2. Restricted (mainly handguns); and
  3. Prohibited (full automatics, converted automatics, handguns with a barrel length of 105 mm (approx. 4") or less, and .25 or .32 caliber handguns among others).

Bringing Guns Into Canada

Prohibited guns, or replicas of prohibited guns cannot be taken into Canada. No exceptions. 

To bring a Restricted gun into Canada, you must be 18-years of age or older and acquire an Authorization to Transport (ATT) from a provincial or territorial Chief Firearms Officer (CFO) before you arrive at the point of entry into Canada. You cannot get an ATT for purposes of hunting or self-protection

To bring Non-Restricted guns into Canada, you must be 18-years of age or older, declare your guns at your first point of entry, complete a Non-resident Firearms Declaration form in triplicate, have it confirmed by a customs officer and pay a $50 (Canadian funds) fee. 

Once confirmed, the Non-resident Firearms Declaration will act as a temporary license and registration certificate while in Canada and is valid for 60 days. Visitors may renew their temporary license any time during a 12-month period without paying an additional fee. Unlicensed non-residents who plan to borrow a firearm in Canada must obtain a Temporary Borrowing License.

Visitors will be able to purchase ammunition with Canadian firearms license, a confirmed firearms declaration form or a Temporary Borrowing License.

Additional laws apply to non-residents who purchase or borrow guns in Canada, to persons importing guns into Canada, and to use and possession of guns by minors while in Canada.

Complete information on Canadian firearms laws for residents and visitors, as well as fee lists and all required forms can be found on the Canadian Firearms Centre Web site at: http://www.cfc-ccaf.gc.ca/Default-en.html

• Also see: The Darker Side of Traveling to Canada
"Please be aware that whichever country you come from, Canada has it's own set of laws. As ridiculous as it may sound, the laws in your home country are not worth the paper they are written on here in Canada." -- From Canada for Visitors Guide Elke Mairs.


Subscribe to the Newsletter

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.