Up to $50/hr for waiting in front of the passport office

The passport crisis is forcing Quebecers, angered by the endless delays, to pay $20 to $50 an hour to have someone queue for them outside the Service Canada passport office.

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“Most of the time it’s the assistants of wealthy businessmen who contact me. I was told that they don’t have time to wait in line all day. I do it for them because it’s easy money,” says Bryan Buraga, smiling.



Bryan Buraga - passport crisis




Photo Francis Pilon

the protocol met the 23-year-old young man yesterday at the Guy Favreau complex in Montreal. This is where he usually lines up for those who refuse to hang around for hours to get or renew their passports.



Bryan Buraga - passport crisis




Photo Francis Pilon

It is the “unprecedented volume of applications being processed” and labor shortages in the midst of a pandemic that have led to these colossal delays of several months, according to Service Canada.

the only chance

Mr. Buraga charges $21.17/hr on the platform TaskRabbit for his services, which he has been offering since May last year. So he gets up at dawn to queue for hours outside Service Canada’s offices.



Classifieds - Passports




Screenshot of Taskrabbit

As he is about to enter the passport office, Bryan Buraga writes to his client to take his place. With that he gives him his position in the queue and that’s it.



Bryan Buraga - passport crisis




Photo Francis Pilon

“It’s very simple. For me it’s a win-win formula,” he admits.

Dozens of announcements

The newspaper also found dozens of ads across the country for this type of job. You have been reported Facebook Marketplace, Kijiji and TaskRabbit.



Classifieds - Passports




Screenshot from Facebook

Most of these service providers charge $20/hr to $50/hr for the passport office queue in Ottawa, Toronto, Quebec and Montreal. The most motivated are in line for their customers at 4 a.m. in the morning.



Classifieds - Passports




Screenshot from Facebook

“I’m a single parent. I have to take care of my daughter so I can’t go there all the time. But I can tell you it’s a mess and people are discouraged. I get requests every day,” says Sam, a Montrealer who refuses to give her last name because she doesn’t know if the program is legal.



Classifieds - Passports




Screenshot from Facebook

When contacted about this issue, Service Canada did not respond to our questions yesterday.

Note that Service Canada offices, including the media relations department, are closed on weekends despite the endless lines during the weekday.

With Pascal Dugas Bourdon

AVERAGE WAITING TIME FOR EACH PASSAMMT:

  • Guy Favreau Complex in Montreal: 4 hours
  • Place de la Cite in Quebec: 3h15
  • Meadowlands Drive, Ottawa: 4 hours
  • 74 Victoria Street, Suite 300, Toronto: 2h15
  • Sinclair Center in Vancouver: 3h30

Source: Service Canada

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