If you’re about to apply for a Canadian passport, then you must have already got acquainted with the list of documents you need to submit. It includes 2 identical photos to go along with your set of documents.
Heading to the London Drugs to take them is probably the first thing that comes to mind. Although, there are a few alternatives you could resort to as well other than going to London Drugs.
What is So Different about Canadian Passport Photos
Official size is 5×7 cm, which is slightly bigger than other passport photos from all over the world. Check out the passport standards in other countries:
- USA – 2×2 in (51×51 mm)
- France and UK – 35×45 mm
The specifications also include:
- White background (light-grey will also do)
- No retouching of face features
- Matte paper
- Identical images, no older than 6 months
- Relaxed expression (don’t frown or smile; close the mouth but don’t press lips together)
- Prescription glasses are allowed, with eyes clearly visible and no glare on the lenses
- No sunglasses
- Look directly at the camera
- A full-faced picture, with the upper part of the shoulders present in the frame
- Face is from 31 to 36 mm
- A stamp or signature at the back is a must
Note that a photo for a Canadian visa has different requirements – 35×45 mm, the size that’s common in most countries.
London Drugs Photo Alternatives
If you don’t want or don’t have the opportunity to visit this popular retail chain, there are 2 ways you can go about it: head to its competitors or use online services.
The most popular places are pharmacies and retail chains, such as:
- Shoppers Drug Mart
- Jean Coutu
Located across Canada, they’re not hard to find. However, their prices vary around $13-20 CAD, which is generally slightly more expensive than at London Drugs.
Apart from that, you can go to local photo salons. But bear in mind that not all of them have the means to give you the digital image, which you are required to submit for an online application. Even if they do provide their clients with such service, it is usually way overpriced, making it the least cost-efficient way to get your Canadian passport photo.
Opt for Online Services
It’s more convenient to apply through online software. Visafoto is the most convenient way to get a Canada passport photo.
How does it work? First, submit your selfie here. Then wait while the website converts it to the passport photo format. The whole process takes just a few seconds.
In the end, download the results, which contain 2 files: the photo for an online application and another for printing. This way you can get the right picture for any official ID, whether it’s for a visa or a driving license, etc.
Where Can I Take a Picture?
You don’t have to go anywhere to take a shot. You’re able to get it done with your phone’s camera. Three ways to make it work:
- ask a friend
- use a selfie stick
- use a tripod
Make sure there are 1,5-2 meters between your face and the camera. Don’t worry about the background. The online service will remove all unwanted elements and make sure it’s white.
I Need a Hardcopy: Where to Print?
If you have a device that can print 4×6” paper, it’s great. Just make sure you use matte paper. In case you don’t have such a printer, your first thought is to go to post offices or retail stores. However, going there directly with a USB stick might be a little pricey, as some of them may charge you the same amount as for a regular passport photo. So the best way is to order your prints online, so you can get it for about $0.39 CAD only.
What about a Stamp at the Back?
The back of the image must contain the stamp of the studio, where it was taken. Instead, you can ask your friend to put their name and signature at the back. Don’t forget to mention the date it was taken, as well as the address of the person who confirms your identity.
As you see, there are a few London Drugs photo alternatives. The most cost-efficient one is to use the online service. Not only you save your money, but you also save your time, and it gives you a 100% competent photo.