How to Immigrate to Canada from Ireland

Immigrating to Canada opens opportunities for individuals seeking a fresh start in a vibrant and diverse country. From understanding the various immigration pathways to confidently navigating the application process, we've got you covered every step of the way.

Irish immigrants have made significant contributions to Canadian culture, economy, and society from Toronto to Vancouver. The Irish community, numbering 4.4 million strong based on the Canadian government census, maintains strong connections to their heritage while embracing the opportunities and challenges of life in Canada.

Gain the knowledge to navigate the immigration process from Ireland to Canada with our guide, ensuring a smooth transition and access to abundant opportunities in your new Canadian journey!

Permanent Residency Pathways to Canada From Ireland

permanent residency pathways to canada from ireland

Here are the Canada permanent residency (PR) immigration pathways you can use to immigrate to Canada from Ireland.

Express Entry System

The Express Entry system is an online points-based application management system used by the Canadian government to manage immigration applications from foreign skilled workers and tradespeople. You create an online Express Entry profile through the Express Entry system, where your points are calculated based on factors such as

  • Work experience,
  • Education,
  • Adabtability to Canadian society,
  • Language proficiency, and
  • Age.

Applicants with high scores are placed in a pool of candidates, and the highest-scoring individuals receive invitations to apply (ITA) for permanent residency. Within the system, there are three essential programs:

Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)

The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) is open to skilled workers with at least one year of continuous paid, full-time, or equivalent work experience in an occupation on the National Occupation Classification (NOC) list.

Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)

The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) is part of Canada's immigration system, specifically designed for skilled trades workers who wish to obtain Canadian PR.

Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

The Canadian Experience Class (CEC) is ideal for individuals with skilled work experience in Canada through temporary work permits or international student programs and who want to obtain Canadian PR.

Find out which Express Entry program is best for you.

Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)

Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) address specific Canadian provinces' specific labor market needs. Each province establishes its own PNP program with unique eligibility criteria and application processes. Often, these programs have lower requirements than Express Entry and can offer a faster route to permanent residency, depending on the province you settle in.

Irish citizens with skills in high demand within specific provinces are encouraged to explore the websites of each provincial government to discover relevant PNP programs.

Learn more about Canada’s Provincial Nominee Program.

Canadian Immigration Pilots

The Canadian government has implemented immigration pilots to address specific needs or test new immigration approaches. This includes the:

Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP)

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP) is a pathway to permanent residence for skilled foreign workers and international graduates who want to work and live in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.

Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) is designed to spread the benefits of economic immigration to smaller communities by creating a path to permanent residence for skilled foreign workers who want to work and live in participating communities.

Agri-Food Pilot

The Agri-Food Pilot addresses labor needs in the Canadian agri-food sector. It provides a pathway to permanent residence for experienced, non-seasonal workers in specific industries and occupations.

Home Care Provider Pilot

The Home Child Care Provider Pilot and Home Support Worker Pilot comprise the Home Care Provider Pilots, initiatives in Canada aimed at qualified caregivers and their families to become permanent residents.

Business Immigration

For entrepreneurial Irish citizens, Canada offers business immigration programs you can use to obtain Canadian PR. This includes:

Start-Up Visa Program

The Start-Up Visa Program supports innovative entrepreneurs who can secure funding from designated venture capital firms or angel investor groups.

Self-employed Program

The Self-employed Program caters to individuals with relevant experience and proven ability to establish and operate a successful business in Canada.

Family Sponsorship

If you have a close family member who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, they can sponsor your application for permanent residency under the Family Sponsorship program. This program has specific requirements regarding the type of family member and their financial ability to support you.

Temporary Residency Pathways to Canada From Ireland

Several temporary residency options provide valuable stepping stones to Canadian PR if you’re initially ineligible for permanent residency as an Irish citizen.

Temporary Foreign Work Permit (TFWP)

The Temporary Foreign Work Permit (TFWP) is the most common option for Irish citizens seeking work experience in Canada. The TFWP is an employer-specific work permit, which authorizes you to work for a specific Canadian employer in a specific occupation for a predetermined duration.

The work experience gained with a TFWP enables you to apply for Canadian PR via programs like the Canadian Experience Class (CEC). Ensure your employer has a Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Find out more about the Temporary Foreign Work Permit.

International Mobility Program (IMP)

The International Mobility Program (IMP) is a Canadian immigration program that allows Canadian employers to hire you as a temporary foreign worker in Canada without an LMIA. This provides an expedited process for obtaining a work permit in Canada and quickly gaining the experience needed to apply for Canadian PR via the Canadian Experience Class.

Study Permit

A study permit is essential for Irish citizens pursuing academic ambitions in Canada. Study permits allow you to enroll in designated learning institutions (DLIs) like universities and colleges. They also enable you to work in Canada while studying, allowing you to gain the necessary work experience to apply for Canada PR via the CEC.

Working Holiday Visa

International Experience Canada’s (IEC) Working Holiday Visas are available for young adults, typically aged between 18 to 35, but in some countries, only up to 30. These visas allow individuals to travel and work in various countries for up to 24 months, allowing you to gain the experience needed to apply for Canada PR via Express Entry, PNPs, etc.

Benefits of Moving From Ireland to Canada

Benefits of moving to Canada from Ireland

Canada offers a multitude of benefits that can significantly enhance your quality of life:

Canada’s Strong Economy and Job Market

Canada boasts a robust and diversified economy, consistently ranking among the strongest in the world. This means ample job opportunities across various sectors, with skilled workers in high demand. Compared to Ireland, Canada often offers higher salaries, particularly in technology, engineering, and healthcare.

Canada is ranked 14th out of 137 countries in terms of global competitiveness, according to the most recent report of the World Economic Forum (WEF). In contrast, Ireland is ranked 24th out of 137 based on the same organization.

Find out more about Canada’s economy.

Canada’s Diverse and Multicultural Society

Canada is renowned for its diverse and multicultural society, where individuals from various backgrounds and ethnicities thrive. This fosters an inclusive and welcoming environment, allowing you to embrace new cultures, traditions, and perspectives. You'll find vibrant communities celebrating their heritage nationwide, creating a rich tapestry of experiences.

Learn more about multiculturalism in Canada.

Canada’s Pristine and Diverse Natural Beauty

Canada's natural beauty is unparalleled, encompassing majestic mountains, pristine lakes, rugged coastlines, and vast forests. Whether you're an avid adventurer seeking outdoor pursuits or simply appreciate scenic surroundings, Canada's diverse landscapes offer something for everyone. This proximity to nature fosters active lifestyles and provides breathtaking backdrops for everyday life.

Explore Canada’s beauty via its National Parks.

Canada’s Enhanced Work-Life Balance

Canada prioritizes a healthy work-life balance, encouraging employees to disconnect and enjoy personal time. This is reflected in shorter work weeks, generous vacation time, and accessible childcare options, all administered via Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC). This emphasis on well-being allows you to pursue personal interests, spend quality time with loved ones, and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

Cultural Connections With Canada

Irish citizens often find a sense of cultural connection with Canada, thanks to shared British colonial historical ties and ongoing cultural exchange. With a significant Irish diaspora community nationwide totaling 4.4 million, you'll encounter familiar traditions, celebrations, and similar cultural nuances, easing your transition to a new life in Canada.

Visa Exemptions For Irish Citizens

As an Irish citizen, you enjoy the advantage of visa-free entry to Canada for stays under six months. This allows for convenient short-term visits to explore the country and experience its offers firsthand before making a permanent move.



Where Can I Find Additional Resources And Assistance For Immigrating to Canada From Ireland?

You can find additional resources and assistance for immigrating to Canada from Ireland through government websites like the Irish Canadian Immigration Centre, Canada Ireland Foundation, or Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann. There are Immigration consultants, Irish community organizations in Canada, and online forums dedicated to Irish immigrants.

How Long Does The Immigration Process Typically Take For Irish Citizens Moving to Canada?

The immigration process typically takes several months for Irish citizens moving to Canada, with varying processing times depending on the type of visa or immigration program. Ensure you submit all required documents accurately and promptly to avoid delays.

Find out more about the IRCCs Processing Times.

Can I Work in Canada Immediately Upon Arrival As An Irish Immigrant?

While certain immigration programs may grant immediate work authorization, most Irish immigrants must obtain a valid work permit before working in Canada legally. Consulting with an immigration professional as a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) can help clarify your specific eligibility and requirements.