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Working in Canada as an Expat

Living, and working in Canada can be a very rewarding experience either for short term or for long term goals. Canada has a very high standard of living, and is still considered as a land of opportunity, yet there are still a number of hurdles to overcome for expats wanting to live, and work there. First of all, in order to enter Canada, there are two visa types: An employment authorization visa, and an immigration visa. The former being for a limited period of time, and does not confer permanent residency, the latter, on the other side does not put any restrictions on where to work, for how long, and does grant permanent residency but is much harder to receive. Some employers, though, are willing to sponsor you, so you could get a work visa.

Since Canada is a very cosmopolitan country, thanks to the bilingual government, and the culture influenced by British and French, lots of companies look for people who can speak French and English. Multiculturalism has even been adopted as an official governmental policy since the 1970’s. This really shows Canada’s effort at being an international country and at trying to bring people from all over the world.

There are multiple ways of finding a job in Canada. Newspapers, recruitment websites are always a very good resource as they feature daily to weekly job vacancies updates; albeit, the best way to find a job still remains via networking, talking to friends and to other people. Working in Canada can become very beneficial, and can be a great boost to your career. Toronto, Montréal, for example both are major hubs for business and finance, and thus offer quite a variety of jobs for expats who are pursuing an MBA degree, or for those with an international background. This also applies to Vancouver, for example, as it is situated on the Pacific Rim, and has Canada’s largest port, making it one of North America’s major gateway for Pan Pacific trade. Canada has very strict laws governing salary (more specifically the minimum wage), working hours, and working conditions. Of course, Canada stands by the principle of equal opportunities for everyone, in that employers cannot refuse someone because of their race, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, or disability.

One of the things that make Canada very different, and that is a very controversial topic among its neighboring country, America: The, so to say, Europeanized healthcare system. Every citizen has to pay for health insurance via their income taxes. This amount depends on where you live, as each province has its own healthcare system; although, there is always the possibility of receiving health insurance via your employer. But in the end, all Canadians or permanent resident receive free healthcare. If you are granted Canadian permanent residency, you will almost immediately have to apply for your health insurance card to your respective health insurance department.

All in all, Canada is a very special place to live and work. Once you have overcome the common hurdles of red tape, applicable when moving to any new country, you will finally be able to see the true beauty and advantages of what Canada has to offer.