May 07

Hey Canada, WTF? Or: Wow, I Thought Getting My Passport Was a POTA!

I'm investigating registering my soon-to-be-born baby's birth with Canada so we can get the passport to visit Canada for Xmas.

Before I can do that, I need to get a certificate of citizenship (which apparently can take 6-12 months). The form that I need to fill out is… well, typical bureaucratic nonsense, but that's fine.

Here's the kicker, among the many items they require are two pieces of photo ID.

What? For a newborn? Okay, assuming I get the Japanese passport first (which I don't want to do, because we need the Canadian one to force them to use the correct Romaji), that's one piece. What the fuck other piece of ID is a newborn infant going to have? His tractor-trailer operator's license?

How would I do this if my wife wasn't Japanese and my child didn't have the potential of having a Japanese passport to travel under? Would we be stuck in Japan until Canada finished the paperwork? Am I just simply misunderstanding something?


(This is all aggravated by the fact that I made myself a pizza tonight and then accidentally dropped it on the floor, upside down.)



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  1. Andrew Woolner
    Andrew Woolner

    +James Watt, you must have experience with this? Was it really as much of a pain as it appears? What did you use as the two piece of photo ID?

  2. James Watt
    James Watt

    Not me. I hate the Canadian embassy so much that I haven't even told them I have kids. My hate for the embassy and the passport renewal process is so strong that I consider just getting Japanese citizenship so I can stop bothering with it.

  3. Jon Southurst
    Jon Southurst

    Hmm, I'm in the middle if this same process with the Australian Embassy. Citizenship was very easy & took only 4 weeks, but maybe they're not as busy as the Canadians. Now into the 2nd passport (already got a Japanese one).

    For passport photos, either lie the baby down on a white sheet or take it to a passport photo place; they're pretty used to dealing with babies. We tried both but the pro got the better pic in the end.

  4. James Watt
    James Watt

    P.S. When you get the Japanese passport, just tell them what romaji you want to use. We did this with Carina, and when they asked us about the "C" rather than "K" we just told them that's the way we wanted it.

  5. Andrew Woolner
    Andrew Woolner

    +James Watt That's interesting… The official docs say you can't do that with the name. Good to know it's not true.

  6. James Watt
    James Watt

    Keep in mind that this was five years ago and we were in Sagamihara. The rules might have changed. Or the person we had might have just been very nice.

  7. Jon Southurst
    Jon Southurst

    It's possible, both my wife & son did it with their surname.

  8. Andrew Woolner
    Andrew Woolner

    Correction: my mistake, only one of the two pieces of ID needs to have a photo. I misread the version posted on the website. The form itself is much more clear. Still… that means getting the Japanese passport issued first (which is okay, based on what +Jon Southurst  and +James Watt have told me, but hopefully they don't require photo ID, or I'm fucked!).

    But still, 6-12 months for processing just the citizenship certificate before I can even apply for the passport. What fuckers. Good thing my kid will have Japanese citizenship, or I wouldn't be able to travel to Canada for Xmas this year at all, apparently.

  9. Jon Southurst
    Jon Southurst

    6-12 months for baby citizenship is insane. Why such a delay? It's not like the kid has had time to rack up a police record, or attend a Yemeni Madrasa. All the Aussies wanted was a photo, his birth records & our family register (plus my passport).

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