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Life In Canada

Welcome to your new life in Canada

Canada has many wonderful opportunities for newcomers. However, in the first few weeks there are several things you will need to do for yourself or your family to settle yourself into Canadian life Here are 10 of the foremost important things to try to so as to determine yourself in Canada.

Within your first week …

  1. Permanent Resident Card

    Permanent residents (PRs) must have a valid PR card to be able to return to Canada after leaving the country. It is thus advisable not to leave Canada without your PR card.

    You don’t need to apply for your first PR card, however, you need to provide your Canadian address for the application to be complete. You can provide your address at landing, to the immigration officer, after landing, using Service Canada Website, or by phone at 1-888-242-2100..

  2. Apply for your Social Insurance Number (SIN)

    Apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN). You can apply for a SIN either in person, or by mail.

    To work in Canada, open a savings account, or access government programs and benefits, you need a Social Insurance Number (SIN). The fastest and easiest method to use is to go to your nearest Service Canada Centre and fill out a form.

  3. Protect yourself with medical care

    All Canadian permanent residents are eligible for public health insurance that covers medical care. Each loved one needs his or her own Health Card, issued by the provincial or territorial government. For details on how to apply, visit:

  4. Set up your finances

    A bank account keeps your money safe and accessible and makes it convenient to buy the things you need and pay for bills. For easy access to your money, choose a bank with convenient locations and hours, a wide network of automated bank machines (ABMs), and products that meet your needs.

Within your first month …

After you have taken your initial steps on arrival, you can start to research other areas that may be needed depending on your situation.

  1. Learn your way around

    Canada is proudly multicultural and has many organizations dedicated to helping newcomers feel reception. You can find government-run services for newcomers in your community at

    Public libraries are excellent places to seek out community and government resources — and sometimes free access to the web. Community centers and ethnic associations are great sources of information, activities, and friendships.

  2. Explore job opportunities

    Government services for newcomers are a good place to start your job search. Look for job listings on the internet, but before you start applying for jobs, it’s best to get some advice from a settlement agency or employment counselor, as job hunting is probably going different in Canada than in your country.

    Your first job may not be your dream job; however, it can be the stepping stone to you obtain valuable work experience to move on in the future.

  3. Register your children for school and/or child care

    You will need to register your children at your local school or school board office. Bring your permanent resident card, the record of landing or confirmation of permanent residence, and your child’s birth certificate and vaccination certificate.

    If you plan to work full-time or go to school and need child care, newcomer service organizations can tell you how to find appropriate child care in your area.

  4. Find a doctor and dentist

    Once you have received your government health card you can go ahead and find a doctor or health-care center where you can go for your medical needs. Make an appointment for a medical check-up for yourself and the family when you receive your government health insurance card.

    Until you find a family doctor, you can visit a walk-in clinic or hospital if you need urgent medical care.

  5. Find a permanent home

    When you arrive in Canada, you’ll be staying with relatives or friends or during a hotel. You will probably start the look for an extended-term home for you and your family. Listings for apartments, houses, and condominiums can be found on the Internet, in local newspapers, and at real estate agencies.

Within your first year …

  1. Get a driver’s licence

    To drive a car in Canada, you need a valid driver’s license and car insurance. A driver’s license from another country could also be valid for a couple of months, but to remain licensed you’ll get to pass a practical test on the road and a written test of your knowledge of Canadian driving rules.

    For more information on requirements specific to where you live, look up the motor vehicle licensing agency in your province or territory.

  2. Enhance your language skills

    If English or French isn’t your mother tongue, ask about Government of Canada programs for newcomers to assist you to improve your language skills. For example, Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) may be a federal program available freed from charge. Check with your local settlement agency about the free English courses they provide.