Domains General FAQs
How does .ca
differ from .com?
.ca is the country code Top Level Domain
(ccTLD) designating Canada. .com is the
generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) designating
Commercial. The policies and administration
of the .ca Domain name will be set by
CIRA, and governed by Canadian law. The
gTLDs are managed in the United States
under American law.
services do I get with a .ca registration?
You receive a free business card web page,
e-mail forwarding, and domain forwarding
with each .ca domain registration.
What is CIRA?
CIRA stands for the Canadian Internet
Registration Authority. It is a not-for-profit
organization mandated by the Canadian
government to operate the .ca top-level
domain. CIRA was incorporated in 1998
to set policy for and operate the .ca
domain. It assumed responsibility on December
1, 2000 from the University of British
Columbia. CIRA significantly changed the
rules and requirements for .ca domain
registrations making .ca domain registrations
easier and more accessible to a wider
range of Registrants. For example, it
is now possible for Registrants to register
an unlimited number of domains. .ca 2nd
level domains are now available to anyone
with a Canadian
presence (not just Canadian corporations).
How do I register
a .ca domain name?
Ordering .ca domain name is easy. Just
enter your domain name in the search box
located on any page and follow the steps.
automatically members of CIRA?
A description of CIRA membership can be
found on the CIRA website http://www.cira.ca
in Membership in CIRA shall be limited
to Registrants who become Members at the
time of becoming a Registrant. Registrants
shall have the right to refuse or rescind
membership at any time. Members who cease
to be Registrants or fail to pay membership
fees, if any, or Registrants fees (in
accordance with the Corporation's policies)
shall no longer be Members of the Corporation
forthwith after such event.
Can I be a
Registrant if I don't have a domain names?
CIRA offers the option of becoming a Registrant
without a domain name. This effectively
enters a Registrant's information into
the CIRA database following the Registrant's
confirmation and acceptance of the CIRA
Registrant agreement. This is available
to anyone who does not currently have
a ".ca" domain registration for the same
fee as a 1-year registration. Asia Pacific
IT will process orders for this service
if an e-mail
is sent requesting the service.
NOTE: This procedure
registers a Registrant without a domain
name. However, following its registration,
the Registrant has 90 days to register
at least one (1) domain name in order
to retain a Registrant record in the CIRA
database. The advantage of this service
is that it allows a Registrant to be registered
in the CIRA database by confirming and
accepting the CIRA Registrant agreement.
Once a Registrant is entered into the
CIRA system, all subsequent domain names
that are registered using the Registrant's
confirmed information will automatically
be registered without the need of reconfirming
and accepting the CIRA Registrant agreement.
This would appeal to someone who anticipates
registering a large number of domains
in the near future but does not currently
have any domains registered through CIRA.
are the Canadian Presence Requirements?
CIRA has determined that the .ca domain
space should be developed as a key public
resource for the social and economic development
of all Canadians. Accordingly, those registering
a .ca domain name must meet certain Canadian
Presence Requirements. The new Canadian
Presence Requirements still require a
connection to Canada but enable a much
broader group of people to register .ca
domain names than the old regulations.
can I register my ".ca" domain for?
You may register domain names for a period
of one (1) to ten (10) years.
characters can my ".ca" domain have?
Domain names must be not less than two
(2) and not greater than fifty (50) characters
any restrictions to what I can register
No characters other than a combination
of the following characters may be used
for a domain name registration:
- Letters a through z (no accents will
be accepted). Note that domain names
are not case sensitive. This means there
will be no distinction made between
upper case letters and lower case letters
(A = a);
- The numbers 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,
8 and/or 9; and
- The hyphen character (although it
cannot be used to start or end a domain
name). Length. Domain names must be
not less than two (2) and not greater
than fifty (50) characters long.
CIRA maintains a list of reserved names
that are not available for registration
in the CIRA Registry. This list includes,
but not is limited to:
- .all the existing and future generic
top level domain (gTLD) three letter
names (including .com.ca, .org.ca, .net.ca,
.edu.ca, .gov.ca, .int.ca, .mil.ca);
- .the names, and all abbreviations
of names, of Canada, of Canadian provinces
and territories as well as the names
of major Canadian cities and landmarks.
A detailed list may be found at http://www.cira.ca.
CIRA reserves the right to periodically
review and amend this list and to grant
registrations of any of the names on
the list as it deems appropriate. Geographical
names may be made available to corresponding
government entities under special conditions
to be determined by CIRA in its discretion.
A domain name will not be registered
if, at the time the Registration Request
is made to CIRA, the domain name is an
exact match in all respects to a domain
name that is registered in the name of
another person in the CIRA Registry at
any level, whether second, third or fourth,
unless such other person consents in writing
to the registration of a domain name at
a level different than the one for which
the domain name is registered. For example,
if xyz.on.ca (third level) is registered,
another person cannot obtain a registration
for xyz.on.ca , xyz.ca (second level)
or xyz.ottawa.on.ca (fourth level) without
the written consent of the registrant
of xyz.on.ca. CIRA may request DomainPeople
to provide evidence of such written consent.
Other Restrictions. CIRA, in its sole
discretion, has the right to reject and
refuse to register any domain name for
any reason whatsoever. A domain name Registration
may be suspended by CIRA pursuant to the
Registrant Agreement (see Section 12)
and may be cancelled by CIRA pursuant
to the Registrant Agreement (see Section
I confirm my registration with CIRA?
If this is the first domain name registration
for the Registrant, Asia Pacific IT
will provide you with a link to the CIRA
confirmation login page, and supply you
with a customer number and password required
to complete the confirmation. It is the
applicant's responsibility to confirm
their registration with CIRA within 5
days of submitting the order. The CIRA
confirmation page will display the following
NOTE: If the registration
is not confirmed or canceled within five
(5) days of placing the order, an administrative
fee of $10.00 CDN will be charged.
- Confirm (this will
confirm the Registrant's registration
for this and future domains)
- Confirm later (this
will keep the domain reserved for the
remainder of the five (5) days to allow
the Registrant to request Asia Pacific
IT to make any corrections to the Registrant
information. These requests must be
- Cancel (this will
cancel the registration request)
Can I register
a ".ca" domain directly with CIRA?
No. Registrants must go through a CIRA
Certified Registrar such as Asia Pacific IT . As part of the CIRA Registrar
certification process, Asia Pacific IT
(and other Registrars) must provide all
registration services including customer
and technical support, which CIRA does
not provide to Registrants directly.
".ca" domains can an organization or individual
Any qualifying individual or organization
can register an unlimited number of .ca
domain names. These new rules are posted
at CIRA found at http://www.cira.ca.
be registered as a domain name?
No. Applications for the registration
of domain names will be considered and
either accepted or rejected in accordance
with the CIRA rules found at http://www.cira.ca.
the dispute resolution process?
CIRA's dispute resolution process to address
disputes between domain name Registrants
and those who claim trademarks and related
rights. The dispute resolution process
takes into account the interests of domain
name and trademark owners, as well as,
Canada's intellectual property laws. More
information regarding CIRA's Domain Dispute
Policy can be found on its website at
How do I
find out the Whois information on a .ca
To find out who has registered a .ca domain
name or to verify that your own domain
name is in the CIRA registry, go to the
CIRA web site at http://www.cira.ca and
click on Whois. Be aware that it can take
up to 24 hours to show up as registered
from the time you registered your domain
is Change Without Approval (CWA)?
CWA enables .ca domain name Registrants
to grant their Registrar the ability to
submit changes to the Registrant's administrative
contact information without the Registrant
having to go to CIRA's confirmation/approval
site to enter their CIRA user account
number and CIRA private password, to further
approve the changes. More importantly,
CWA enables manual changes to administrative
contact information to be completed without
further approval on CIRA's site. This
will expedite the process and will save
you the administrative fees charged for
the manual service.
does CWA benefit me?
One advantage of CWA is that it enables
you to manage and maintain your domain
contact information as quickly and efficiently
as a .com domain. Another benefit is that
you can avoid paying extra processing
fees should you ever require us to assist
you with a Manual Administrative Contact
change for your .ca domain(s).
How do I add/remove CWA to my
All new .ca domains registered through
Asia Pacific IT will have the CWA
request submitted to CIRA along with your
registration. You simply have to confirm
and approve CWA on CIRA's website as part
of the usual registration confirmation
process. If you have a .ca domain that
does not have the CWA flag activated,
you can add CWA through your Once Click Domain Manager (OCDM).
Once you're logged in, click on the ?CWA
Flag Status? menu item under the domain
section and follow the instructions. You
can also add CWA on the administrative
contact change form of OCDM. The CWA option
can be enabled and disabled at anytime
through the OCDM. Any new activations
of the CWA status will result in an email
from CIRA requiring confirmation on the
CIRA website. We recommend that you leave
this option active to save time and the
service fees in case you require a Manual
Administrative Contact change in the future.