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Application Processing Times

Processing times have increased significantly and there isn’t a single agency (private or government) that can expedite your application. Today, you must expect to wait 6-8 months before your application reached the Conditional Approval stage. It wasn’t long ago that you could get conditionally approved within weeks. Conditional approval is the stage in the application process where you can schedule your mandatory interview.

Once you are at this stage you can schedule an interview at any enrollment center. Most are located along the US – Canada border, but some are located at leading airports like Toronto Pearson. Some enrollment centers are so heavily subscribed that it’s impossible to schedule your interview early and some locations will add another 6 months to your processing time. If you want to use your card for air travel, you must attend an interview at an enrollment center offering iris scanning.

The huge applications backlog applies to first time and renewal applications; both child applicants and adults are equally affected. The backlog has been caused by the COVID-19 virus issues. Some enrollment centers have been temporarily closed making appointment slots even more difficult to get.