Can I take my firearms to Canada when I immigrate?


You could be an avid hunter, a collector, or simply the owner of a rifle with sentimental value. Would you be allowed to take your firearms to Canada with you when you immigrate, and if so, how many?

Firstly, it must be understood that the firearm regulatory law in Canada is stricter than most other countries in the world. For example, in South Africa, there are no magazine capacity restriction laws, while in Canada magazines are limited to 5 rounds for centre-fire, semi-automatic rifles or shotguns and 10 rounds for semi-automatic handguns, (with exemptions for certain magazines). Furthermore, you are prohibited from practicing concealed carrying in Canada (except if you receive a difficult-to-obtain Authorisation to Conceal permit.) Silencers or weapons with bullpup stocks are also prohibited.

The point being, if you ensure you only attempt to take firearms to Canada that are not entirely prohibited from entering Canada, you will be able to take them with you if you pass the required tests and fill in the right forms. The details of how it would work would depend on what weapons you have and what your occupation will be in Canada. Just know that it is definitely possible to legally bring your firearms to Canada. Although we do not specialise in advice about the specific nuances that influence what weapons can be taken to Canada, feel free to do a Skype Consultation or an in-person Consultation with us for advice about the overall process you would follow to immigrate to Canada – and we will then also give you some pointers to assist you with contacting customs about the movement of firearms to Canada.

2 thoughts on “Can I take my firearms to Canada when I immigrate?

  1. I have an air rifle a BSA torpedo I inherited from my grandfather and I own a CZ P07 handgun and my wife owns a Glock 43 handgun. Will I be able to take them with from South Africa. I can sell the hand guns but want to bring the air rifle.

    1. Hey Jaco.

      According to an official statement by the Candian Border Services agency (
      “Other barreled weapons, such as pellet guns, may be considered as non-restricted or restricted firearms if they meet the legal definition of a firearm and have a muzzle velocity of more than 152.4 meters (500 ft.) per second and muzzle energy of more than 5.7 joules. Owners of such firearms have to meet all import, licence, registration and authorization requirements for non-restricted or restricted firearms.
      If the muzzle velocity of a weapon is 152.4 meters (500 ft.) per second or less or if the muzzle energy is 5.7 joules or less, the weapon may still, technically, be a firearm. However, owners of such weapons do not need a firearms licence, the weapons do not have to be registered, and owners do not need an authorization to transport such a weapon for importation purposes.”

      Please note that, even if your air rifle falls under the “restricted” category, you should be able to take it (and the handguns) to Canada. But, to be sure about that, you have to get into contact with the Canadian Border Services agency, and go through their paperwork etc.

      If you need extra help, Deanne would be happy to assist you with the Canadian Border Services paperwork, and any other immigration related questions you might have, in an in depth consultation. (

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