Immediately the United Kingdom decided to leave the European Union, a good number of British nationals started moving abroad, and much more are still considering leaving the United Kingdom. With over 650,000 British residents, Canada has always been a very perfect location of choice for British nationals, all for very good reasons.
For one, the country has one of the highest per-capita immigration rates in the world and thousands of individuals move to Canada every year. Noted as the second-largest country in the world in area, Canada’s uniquely beautiful and varied landscape includes everything from mind-blowing mountains, extensive shorelines, forested valleys, blue lakes, snowfields, to vast plains.
It is, without doubt, a land of vast cultures with its cities serving as a melting pot for people of different origins and cultures. Canada is bilingual, identifiable to both English and French as official languages – although English remains more pronounced.
Canada features a matured economy with a relatively strong and reliable currency that is easily traded with the UK, and from a cultural perspective, although it’s always ideal to respect any differences, it is quite easy for Brits to acclimate and also feel at home in the country.
The nation remains one of the very few nations that have steadily let Immigrants in, despite the effects of the pandemic of recent years. With a 4 million target for immigrants in 2023, Canada has become one of the most desired countries for migration.
If you are looking to immigrate to Canada from the UK, your first step should be to ascertain if you are eligible to apply, and if so, for which program. Once you find out if you are eligible to apply, you can then start sourcing the necessary documents.
6 Ways to Move to Canada from UK
Indeed, the Canadian government has various immigration programs that may be ideal for anyone looking to move to Canada from the UK. Nonetheless, here are the top pathways for anyone looking to move to Canada from the UK.
Express Entry Program
Express Entry remains Canada’s immigration application management system for top federal economic-class programs such as Federal Skilled Worker Program, Canadian Experience Class, and Federal Skilled Trades Program, coupled with some Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs). In this management system, points are allocated based on various factors like age, work experience, education history, and so on.
- Must be less than 45 years of age
- Have a Bachelor’s degree
- Minimum 2 years in specified professions
- Score minimum 67 points out of 100
- Read, write and speak English
- Have no criminal history
- Clear Medical exams
This is one Canadian immigration program where a job offer from an employer isn’t that necessary. Most often, candidates are selected for permanent residency based upon the intention of the candidate to become economically dependent and permanently residing in Quebec.
- Aged fewer than 40.
- Bachelor’s degree in any stream.
- Previous work experience of at least 2 years.
- You need to score at least 50 points
- Education in Quebec (not mandatory)
- No criminal records.
- Must have good health
IEC (International Experience Canada)
Note that the IEC (International Experience Canada) program is a Working Holiday temporary visa specifically designed for young British citizens who are looking to reside, obtain work experience, and travel in Canada. One of the primary benefits of this Canadian immigration program is that you don’t need a job or work in Canada offer to apply for it.
- Should be around 18 to 30 years of age
- Only permitted to apply once for the IEC program
- Heath and Character certificate
- Travel insurance is valid for the entire duration of the stay in Canada
Atlantic Immigration Pilot
This Canadian immigration program is particularly for Canadian immigration to these provinces or regions: Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Labrador, New Brunswick, and New Scotia. Have it in mind that this immigration pilot features three immigration pathways:
- The Atlantic High-Skilled Program
- The Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program
- The Atlantic International Graduate Program
Each program features its unique eligibility requirements.
This Canadian immigration program is more suitable for individuals with a certain level of experience in owning, managing, and running a business. The 4 Business Visa pathways to Canada include:
a. Start-Up Visa Investor Program
To qualify for this program, you are expected to:
- Have a business
- English and French (CBL5) knowledge
- Letter of support from a designated institution to show funding
- Proof of funds to live in Canada
b. Entrepreneur Program
To qualify for this program, you will need to:
- Invest or start a business in Canada within 2 years after arriving in Canada
- Show active and ongoing business management
- Employ one or more Canadian citizens or permanent residents who are not related to you.
c. Self-Employed Persons Program
To qualify for this program, you will need to:
- Show relevant experience of minimum 2 years in the recent 5 years
- Proof of ability and willingness to be self-employed
- Score a minimum of 35 points
- No criminal records
- Show you are in good health
d. Business PNP Programs
Have it in mind that all the PNP business immigration programs come with varying eligibility requirements such as:
- Certain specific monetary investments that are peculiar to the province or territory
- Expected to have a detailed business plan
- Attain minimum personal net worth
- Show previous business management experience
- Meet age, language, character, and health requirements
6. Family Class Immigration
This Canadian immigration program is primarily to help reunite families in the country. However, you are expected to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada to be eligible to sponsor anyone.
To be sponsored, the person must be one of the following;
- Spouse or common-law partner
- Dependent children
- Adopted Children
- Sibling, nephew, niece, or grandchild under 18, orphaned and unmarried
- Other relatives if you do not have a spouse, dependent children, or parents.
How Much Does It Cost to Move to Canada from UK
The cost of moving to Canada from the UK will vary depending on the exact program or stream you get your visa under. From the UK, a working holiday visa (International Experience Canada program) or a standard work permit will cost $150 CAD per person, or $100 CAD for an open work permit.
However, if you intend to move to Canada via one of the skilled worker programs, note that the principal applicant’s fee is $2,075 CAD and another $1,325 CAD if your spouse/partner is coming with you. Also, note that the fee for each dependent child is $225 CAD. If you are being sponsored by a Canadian family member, this will cost $1,050 CAD per adult applicant and $150 CAD for each dependent child.
Have it in mind that these fees do not include the $500 CAD Right of Permanent Residence fee (RPFR), which is expected to be paid once an application for permanent residence has been accepted, and there are also requirements concerning how much money you are expected to have in savings (known as ‘settlement funds’) when you move into Canada. If you do not have employment confirmed before arrival, these settlement funds might be much higher.
After Getting your Canadian Visa, What Next?
After you must have gotten your Canadian Visa, the move from the UK to Canada can be as easy as simple as taking a flight with all your belongings. Once you’ve scaled through the immigration process and obtained your Canadian visa, you only have to arrange your belongings and move there either by air, or even ship.
Every year, including during the pandemic, tens of thousands of UK residents and citizens move to Canada to work and study. Although getting a valid job offer from a Canadian company can help you in the immigration process, a good number of successful economic class immigrants come to Canada without prearranged employment.
Note that UK citizens are allowed to stay in Canada for up to six months with a simple visitor visa, however, if you’re considering moving to Canada from the US permanently, you’ll have to apply for permanent resident status. While permanent residents can work, study, and have healthcare in Canada, they can’t vote, run for office, or get certain jobs with high-security clearance.
If you are not already a citizen and you intend to become one, note that you have to spend at least five years in Canada as a permanent resident — and will be expected to prove that you were physically present in Canada for at least 1,095 days during those five years. You will also be expected to be at least 18 years old, speak English or French, take a basic quiz on Canadian history, values, and institutions, and provide income tax filing, among other things.
Simple Steps to Follow After Getting Your Canadian Visa
If you have gone through the immigration process and have already received your Canadian visa, here are simple steps to guide you when moving to Canada.
Prepare for Your Move
Once you have gotten your Canadian Visa, the next thing is to plan your move. You need to make a detailed list of all your belongings, and have them in two copies. You should note items that are coming with you and items that will arrive later, and for those goods where applicable, make sure to include the value, make, model, and serial number.
While you may not necessarily be expected to pay taxes for everyday goods such as clothing, furniture, jewelry, silverware, family heirlooms, books, computers, musical instruments, it is still advisable you check the entry requirements to make sure that you have nothing to worry about.
Rent or Buy a Home
When you first get into the county from the UK, note that you can leverage temporary housing like hotels, hostels, or Airbnb until you can find your footing. Gradually, you can begin to search for more permanent accommodations that will suit your taste or pocket.
Have it in mind that renting is always recommended over buying during the early stage of the move; the average price for a one-bedroom apartment goes around CAD 1,500. Do not forget that prices in big cities tend to be quite exorbitant compared to other moderate towns.
Invest In Durable Clothes For Your Local Climate
Aside from being the second-largest country on earth behind Russia, Canada has no singular “Canadian climate,” even if people tend to think it’s just cold most of the time. Depending on how close you live to the British Columbia coast, spring can begin as early as February, and summer temperatures can rise into the 90s.
Find out what the weather is like in the province you intend to live in and the sort of clothes you will need. This will ensure you don’t waste money or space buying unnecessary items.
Open a Bank Account
After you move to Canada, have it in mind that you will require a bank account to carry out money transfers and transactions. To open a bank account, you will first need to get an identity card. In your case, a permanent resident card will surely work. To make this more convenient for you, the following banks make available specific “newcomer” programs:
- National Bank of Canada.
- Bank of Montreal.
- Royal Bank of Canada.
- Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.
Declare Your Intent To Reside
To become a permanent resident in Canada, you will be expected to confirm your plans to stay in Canada. The government considers permanent residence as living in Canada for at least three years in five years.
However note that days spent in Canada before permanent residence status count as half-days, up to a maximum of a year, and can be used toward the citizenship requirement. If you fail to spend that amount of time within the borders, you can lose your permanent residence status.
Provide Your Income Tax Filing
To be considered a permanent resident, you will also be expected to provide three years’ worth of tax returns in the five years leading up to the date of your application. The aim here is to ascertain if your job is legit. Canada offers one of the world’s most accessible paths to citizenship. About 85 percent of Canada’s immigrants go on to become citizens.
Truth be told, it’s quite easy to immigrate to Canada from the UK. According to data, there are more than 600,000 residents of Canada who are British-born, and British people form a very crucial part of economic and social life in Canada. However, remember that while moving to Canada from the UK may not be that challenging, living in another country can be very difficult if you are not prepared financially, mentally, and socially for the move.
Howbeit, in terms of moving or immigrating to Canada, so many things will depend on your individual case. However, to get an idea of how close you are to meeting the requirements, ensure you work with the right RCIC or agency for UK residents.