Moving to Canada Checklist


For many, moving to a new country is a time for new beginnings, and hopefully a better life. However, it can also be a scary and daunting process, with its fair share of challenges, including language barriers and culture shock. For this reason, it helps to have a detailed immigration checklist, with tasks to be completed under certain timeframes. The following things will hopefully make your transition smoother and less stressful:

  • Seek out organizations in your new community that can help you settle in and assist you in finding work or learning the required language
  • Apply for the Canadian identification you will need to fit into society.  This includes a social insurance number and a health insurance card.  Once you have ID, open a Canadian bank account.

After you have been in Canada for a couple of weeks, think about:

  • Registering your children for school.
  • Exchanging your foreign currency for Canadian dollars.
  • Looking at various housing options.
  • Learning about public transportation in your area, and shopping for whatever you need

After a couple of months have passed and you are feeling more comfortable:

  • Find somewhere to live.
  • Get a family doctor and have your children immunized.
  • Keep working on your language skills and find out what types of immigration services are available in your area.
  • Apply for the GST/HST credit and the Child Tax Benefit, if applicable.

As time goes by and you become more assimilated into Canadian society, you can broaden your horizons even more.  Keep up with your language lessons and if you haven’t already:

  • Go get a driver’s license.
  • Apply for a Permanent Resident Card.
  • Consider applying for continuing education in your chosen field, or in a field you wish to enter.

Although this list may seem extensive, by using it as a guideline you can successfully integrate into Canadian society and way of life.

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