How to Immigrate to Canada Without a Degree

Did you know that you don’t necessarily need a degree to immigrate to Canada? That’s right! Canada has plenty of options for you no matter your skill set or work experience. The key is finding the right immigration opportunity for you. Moving to Canada with no qualifications is not only possible, there are specific programs that cater to potential workers and immigrants just like you. 

Skill Levels Breakdown

There are various Canadian immigration programs to choose from and a lot more for those without degrees than you may think. The 3 important factors when looking for the right immigration program is your skill level, your work experience, and whether or not you have a job offer.

High-skilled jobs in Canada are usually classified at skill level or type 0, A, or B while intermediate or low-skilled occupations are usually classified as type C or D.

Skill type A jobs are for professionals like doctors, lawyers and accountants and Skill type B is for technical or skilled trade jobs, such as chefs, plumbers, or electricians.

Some examples of skill level C jobs fall in the processing, transportation, and hospitality sectors such as industrial butchers, long-haul truck drivers, and food and beverage servers. Occupations that fall under skill level D include fruit pickers, cleaning staff, and oil field workers.

Take a look at the education level that each skill level usually requires:

Education Requirements for Occupation Skill Levels
AUsually requires a university education
BUsually requires college education or apprenticeship training
CUsually requires secondary school and/or occupation-specific training
DUsually require on-the-job training

Now that you know which skill level you fall under and what education requirement may be expected of you, moving to Canada with no qualifications shouldn't seem so far-fetched. Let's take a look at the top 6 ways to immigrate to Canada without a degree.

The Express Entry System

The Express Entry system is aimed at helping highly-skilled foreigners immigrate to Canada in the fastest and most efficient way possible. The Express Entry System has three major programs:

  • The Federal Skilled Worker Program
  • The Federal Skilled Trades Program
  • The Canada Experience Class

While The Federal Skilled Worker Program does indeed require a university degree, Express Entry's two other programs namely The Federal Skilled Trades Program and The Canadian Experience Class do not. Each program has its own set of requirements, however, your eligibility for the Express Entry system depends on the following factors:

Express Entry Eligibility Criteria
Nationality
Age
Language Ability
Education
Work experience
Links to Canada

Each one of these criteria will allow you to score points. The higher your score the better your chances of success in the application process!

Provincial Nominee Programs

If you are a foreign worker who wants to immigrate to Canada and have a valid job offer of at least 1 year, then The Provincial Nominee Program may be the way forward for you. 11 of Canada’s provinces and territories have their own unique programs and requirements, including occupation in-demand programs that allow you to apply through Express-Entry linked programs, streamlining the application process. The key to success here is to find out where your job is in-demand in Canada. The more in demand it is, the higher your chances of receiving a Provincial Nomination (PN) to apply for permanent residency in Canada!

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot is aimed at foreign workers who want to immigrate to one of Canada’s Atlantic provinces

  • Newfoundland & Labrador
  • Prince Edward Island
  • New Brunswick
  • Nova Scotia

In order to apply to live and work in Atlantic Canada through the AIP, you will need to meet the requirements of one of the following programs:

Atlantic Immigration Programs
Atlantic High-Skilled Program
  • have a degree, diploma, or other qualification from a publicly funded Atlantic education institution
  • have lived in an Atlantic Canadian province for a minimum of 16 months out of the 2 years prior to obtaining your post-secondary qualification
  • language test (English or French)
  • Sufficient fund to support you and your family members
Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program
  • have at least 1 year of work experience in a Skill level 0, A, or B job in the last 3 years
  • at least a Canadian high school diploma or equivalent
  • language test (CLBor NCLC Level 4 in English or French)
  • Sufficient fund to support you and your family members
  • Valid full-time non-seasonal job offer of at least 1 year from an employer in Atlantic Canada
Atlantic Home Care Program
  • have at least 1 year of work experience in a Skill level C or as a registered nurse, licensed nurse, nurse’s aide or home support worker in the last 3 years
  • at least a Canadian high school diploma or equivalent
  • language test (CLB or NCLC Level 4 in English or French)
  • Sufficient fund to support you and your family members
  • Valid full-time non-seasonal job offer of at least 1 year from an employer in Atlantic Canada

Pilots and Temporary Programs

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot

The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) is your ticket to immigrate to Canada without a degree if you are interested in moving to one of 11 participating cities and towns in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and British Columbia. In order to qualify you will need to meet the following eligibility requirements: 

RNIP Eligibility Requirements
Have at least 1 year of work experience in the last 3 years
At least a Canadian high school diploma, post-secondary qualification, or equivalent
Language test in English or French (CLB/NCLC 6 for levels 0 and A; CLB/NCLC 5 for level B and CLB/NCLC 4 for levels C & D
Sufficient funds to support you and your family members
Valid full-time non-seasonal job offer from an employer in one of the 11 participating communities

Note:

If you’re an international student in Canada, you do not have to meet the work experience requirements for this pilot. However, you must present a credential from a post-secondary program that was at least two years long or a master’s degree or higher if your program is under two years.

Agri-Food Pilot

The Agri-food Pilot (AIP), which launched in May 2020, is aimed at helping skilled workers in the meat processing and manufacturing sectors, as well as the agricultural and animal production sectors, immigrate to Canada

In order to qualify, you must meet the following criteria:

AIP Eligibility Requirements
Have at least 1 year of full-time non-seasonal work experience in the last 3 years in an eligible occupation
A Canadian high school diploma or equivalent
Language test in English or French (CLB/NCLC 4)
Sufficient funds to support you and your family members
Valid full-time non-seasonal job offer in an eligible occupation

The Home Care Provider Pilots

Home care providers are in high demand in Canada and because of this, the Canadian government has dedicated 2 specific Home Care Provider Pilots to help home support workers and home child care providers live and work in Canada.

The eligibility requirements are:

Caregiver Pilot Eligibility Requirements
Have at least 2 years of full-time Canadian work experience in the last 3 years in an eligible occupation or a valid full-time job offer in an eligible occupation
Relevant post-secondary educational qualification of at least 1 year
Language test in English or French (CLB/NCLC 4)
Sufficient funds to support you and your family members
Supporting documents showing you are capable of doing the job ie. proof of relevant work experience and education credentials

Are you still asking yourself, can I immigrate to Canada without a degree? What you maybe have noticed is that many of thee degree-exempt programs require you to find a job first, so let's see what Canada has to offer. 

Best Jobs in Canada Without a Degree

A successful or well-paying career often requires a university degree or prior experience. But you don't need to have a degree or work experience in that area or subject to apply for many jobs in Canada. You may better understand your employment alternatives and make educated selections if you are aware of the highest-paying professions available without a degree or experience. Canada values skills and experience as such, you may find yourself working in the following occupations without a university degree.

Miners

National average salary: $78,609 per year.

In an underground setting, miners are in charge of mining materials including ore, rocks, and coal. They also create supporting routes to facilitate their entry and exit from the mines. While moving the rocks and ore they extracted to their ultimate places above ground, miners carefully control explosives to shatter huge boulders or ores into smaller and easier-to-transport parts. In addition, they guarantee the safety of their coworkers and the area around them.

Maintenance Manager

National average salary: $75,003 per year

A maintenance manager develops maintenance protocols, puts them into practice, inspects facilities, spots problems, and fixes them. They are in charge of organizing and managing all construction-related repairs and installations.

The hydraulic and electrical systems of a building are also maintained by maintenance managers. They also keep track of maintenance budgets, costs, and budgets for equipment, as well as connections with contractors and service providers.

Receptionists

National salary average: $33,150 per year.

When visitors arrive at a building or institution, receptionists welcome them and point them in the right direction. They make sure the reception area is tidy and appealing and has all the supplies and stationery needed. Through phone calls and in-person interactions, the receptionist also gives correct basic office information.

Utilizing and maintaining office supplies like computers and copiers are among the technical abilities required for a receptionist. Additionally, receptionists need strong verbal and written communication skills, effective time-management and multitasking abilities, and positive customer service attitudes.

Warehouse Worker

National average salary: $32,175 per year.

Orders are prepared and finished by warehouse personnel for pickup or delivery. Loading, packaging, wrapping, labelling, and shipping the order are included in this. They are also in charge of processing and receiving merchandise for the warehouse. The same goes for tasks like unloading, labelling, and storing the goods.

Workers in the warehouse are also responsible for carrying out inventory controls and upholding a high quality for their audits. Strong organizational abilities, expertise with and knowledge of warehousing procedures and practices, and a current forklift license are some prerequisites for a warehouse worker.

Executive Chef

National salary average: $54,915 per year

Among their many responsibilities, executive chefs are in charge of organizing and supervising the cooking process. In order to guarantee that the menus are of the highest caliber, they also work on tweaking or totally changing them. Similarly, senior chefs coordinate the tasks of the kitchen crew in addition to making plans for kitchen equipment purchases and repairs.

Finally, they address complaints or issues relating to meal services while providing their bosses with estimations of food expenses and requirements. The position does not call for a degree.

Source: Talent.com

FAQs

Can I get a good job without a degree in Canada?

Although a bachelor's degree is typically required for professional-level positions in Canada, candidates without a degree may still be eligible for a work visa if they can demonstrate that they have the necessary skills, experience, education, and language proficiency in addition to meeting the employer's job requirements. There are also various highly-paid job opportunities in Canada in the hospital and mining industries

Can I work in Canada with a diploma?

The completion of a certificate, diploma or degree that is at least 8 months long qualifies you for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), which enables you to stay in Canada and work full-time. You can work in any occupation in Canada, even one unrelated to your education, and you don't need a job offer to apply.

Can foreigners without a degree work in Canada?

Yes. Skilled work in Canada is always needed. Canada’s job market is under strain, not because of a lack of jobs but because there aren’t enough local skilled workers to keep up with the number of available jobs in Canada, which is why Canada is looking to you, a skilled and experienced foreign worker looking to live and work in the Canadian community.

What is the easiest province to immigrate to Canada?

This depends on your occupation and where your job is needed the most. Certain PNPs even have special programs dedicated to specific occupations due to the incredibly high need. The province with the most job-specific programs is Saskatchewan. They are as follows:

Saskatchewan Occupation-Specific Programs That Don’t Need a Degree
Saskatchewan Experience Category: Semi-skilled Agriculture Worker(general farm worker)
Health Professionals (including nurses aides)
Saskatchewan Experience Category: Hospitality Sector (food and beverage server, food counter attendant, kitchen helpers, housekeepers, cleaning staff)
Saskatchewan Experience Category: Long Haul Truck Drivers

Bottom Line: Can I Move to Canada Without a Degree?

Easy Answer: Yes. Canada has various programs that don't require foreigners to have a degree in order to work and immigrate.

How We Can Help You

Applying for a Canadian visa can be time-consuming and difficult to wrap your head around. With strict deadlines, procedures, and requirements, it can be easy to make a mistake that could cost you your chance to immigrate to Canada without a degree. But with the guidance and assistance of one of our knowledgeable Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCIC’s)the process will be stress-free.    

When you choose to use our expert and government-trusted service you will get:

  • An in-depth eligibility assessment
  • Guidance on which of 100+ immigration programs and visas to choose from;
  • An immigration plan tailored to your individual needs;
  • A review and submission of all application forms and documentation; as well as
  • Support through every step of the application process.