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Life abroad is an appealing thing. Moving to a new country, starting a new life – it’s definitely attractive. Getting there, however, takes some doing, and before you book flights, you’ll want to know the facts behind getting you and your loved ones to the place you’re going to call home. Canada has become an increasingly popular destination for many South African expats-to-be, and with good reason.

There are two open immigration programs to get into Canada permanently; a Federal program and a Provincial one. There are various types of visas that fall under both programs, and it’s a good idea to know which one works for you. While the Canada visa process might look complicated from the outside, it’s just paperwork – and paperwork just takes perseverance.

Making an application is as easy as visiting the Canadian Immigration website and filling out the forms. It’s also worth checking the website for the Canadian Embassy in South Africa for more information.

 

Do I need a visa to get into Canada from South Africa?

The short answer is yes. Unless you’re a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, a citizen of the United States, or the Queen, you’re going to need a visa. You’ll also need to do a health check; because the CDC has strict guidelines for people that intend on immigrating to Canada.

Federal visa program

This program has two options; the Federal Skilled Worker Visa, and the Federal Skilled Trades Class Visa. There is a set of criteria you’ll need to meet if you’re going to qualify for either of them.

Federal Skilled Trades Visa

  • You’ll need to have at two years of full-time work in a qualifying trade within the past 5 years
  • Proof of a full-time job offer for at least a year, or possess a Canadian Trades certificate
  • You’ll have to write and pass an English Language test, and achieve the following scores:
    • CLB 5 – Speaking and Listening
    • CLB 4 – Reading and Writing
  • Possess the necessary amount of settlement funds (dependent on family size).

Federal Skilled Worker Visa

  • You’ll need to prove one year of full-time work experience in a qualifying occupation
  • Achieve 67 points or more on the assessment criteria:
    • Age
    • Education
    • Language
    • Skills
    • Work Experience
    • Adaptability
  • Write and pass an English Language test, and attain a CLB 7 or higher in all sections
  • Possess the necessary amount of settlement funds (dependent on family size)
  • Possess a valid credentials certificate

Provincial Visa Program

This program provides three potential avenues, and are dependent on your family tree, having lived in Canada already, or having been nominated by a Canadian Province.

Family Class Visa

Qualifying for this class requires that you have a Canadian sponsor (18 years of age or older) who has been living in Canada already. The sponsor can take the following roles:

  • A spouse / Common-Law Partner / Conjugal Partner
  • A parent (including adoptive parents)
  • A child
  • A grandchild
  • Brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces, or grandchildren who are orphaned, are under 18 and don’t have a spouse or common-law partner.

Canadian Experience

  • You’ll need at least twelve months of full-time work experience in a suitable position in Canada, within three years of your application
  • Your work experience was gained under the authorized channels
  • You were not a student, or self-employed
  • You fulfill the language requirements for your job
    • CLB 7 for NOC O and A
    • CLB 5 for NOC B
  • Possess the necessary amount of settlement funds (dependent on family size)

Provincial Nominee

  • You’ll need to have written and passed an English Language Test
  • You’ll require a nomination certificate from a Canadian Province, or territory
  • Possess the necessary amount of settlement funds (dependent on family size)

When you’re checking these as possibilities for you and your loved ones, it’s important to remember to take their circumstances into consideration as well. There is a range of ways in which you or a family member could be found inadmissible, but as long as you follow the correct steps, immigration should be a smooth process! Remember to get in touch with the Canadian affiliate for FIDI, an accredited cross-continent moving company.

 

While FinGlobal can’t assist you with the visa process, we can offer world-class assistance with foreign exchange, financial emigration, tax affairs and more – all the financial services that a South African living abroad might need.

 

What to expect from living in Canada?

Each place has a set of virtues that make it unique; this holds true for somewhere as small as a cul-de-sac in your neighborhood, or somewhere as large as an entire country. The differences are what makes the adventure exciting but being open and adaptable to change is just as important as choosing the right visa. Going in with no expectations gives you the opportunity to explore your new home as it is, and let it open itself up to you, but it’s worth doing some preparation first anyway. Besides the cold and the obsession with maple syrup, Canada has a lot to offer; stunning geography and friendly people are just two examples.

Making the decision to immigrate to Canada will put you into a state of experiencing constant change, but those changes shouldn’t affect your finances. As you move, don’t forget to take your finances with you – FinGlobal is an accredited financial emigration leader. Get in touch today to learn about how we can help you maximize your finances, get you access to your retirement annuities from overseas, the process of financial emigration from South Africa, and more…