dot-caRegistering .ca domains can often be confusing. Here’s a quick, “how to” guide.

Registering a .com, .org, .net or many other top level domains is quite straitforward: you sign up with a registrar, pay them around $9 to $20 depending on their services and the domain, and you are set.

But with Canadian .ca domain names, the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA) adds some extra steps. It goes like this:

  1. After you register with your domain name registrar and purchase your .ca domain you receive an email from CIRA.
  2. The email contains a link, a username and a password.
  3. You must follow the link, user the username and password, and confirm your legal status in Canada, your address, and other information. They’ll ask you if  you want to establish an account or membership with them, although it’s not necessary to complete the domain name process.
You must confirm within a week, or they will assume that you cannot confirm your status as a Canadian person or company, and will cancel your application for the .ca domain!

So, it’s not a scam, it’s not particularly complicated… and it is essential to confirm on time with CIRA, if you want to get up and running with your .ca domain name.

CIRA has more info for new registrants.

Tips? Questions? Comments? Please leave me a message in the comments for this article.

P.S. For registering .ca domain names, and .com, .org., .net, and others, I’ve used for several years, and I appreciate their simple, inexpensive service. There are many others, including Godaddy and Network Solutions for example, that work well, but because they complicate their offerings with lots of addons and up sells, my experience has been that they are more trouble than they are worth.