My First Steps in Canada

Congratulations! You have arrived in Canada and your new life in the exciting country is stretching before you. Find out what is now expected of you to get things started in Canada:

Arriving in Canada

Once you have landed in Canada, you will be asked to produce certain documentation to enter through the Port of Entry.

What should I bring when going through the Port of Entry?

At the Port of Entry, you will need to show your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (CPC) and your Canadian Immigrant Visa to a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) officer at the Port of Entry.

At this point, the immigration officer will ensure that you do not have any expired documentation. You will need to provide the following documents:

  1. A valid passport
  2. 2 Copies of a detailed list of your belongings
  3. Proof of funds

At your point of arrival, you will be handed application papers to complete for your Permanent Resident Card. This card is essential in proving your permanent residency.

What other documents do I need?

Make sure that you have the following documents:

  • Birth certificate or adoption papers
  • Family records (such as marriage certificate or divorce papers)
  • Medical records (such as immunization records)
  • Dental records
  • Official school records for children
  • Diplomas, degrees and transcripts
  • Academic credentials evaluation report
  • Reference letters from previous and current employers
  • Professional or trade licences or qualification certificates
  • Up-to-date résumé or summary of work experience
  • Valid driver's licence or other identification documents
  • Vehicle registration documents (if you are importing a vehicle into Canada)

What should I do first?

PR card: Apply for your Permanent Residence card on arrival as you will always need this card to re-enter the country.

SIN card: Without your SIN (Social Identity Card), you will be very limited. This card is crucial in applying for a job, getting any government assistance and applying for credit.

Medical Services card: When entering Canada, it is important that you apply immediately for your Medical Services card, as it will take up to 3 months to receive the card. This will give you access to government-funded medical care, but in the meantime, it is recommended that you apply for private health insurance.

Child Canada Tax Benefit: Did you know that if you have children, you may qualify for the Canada Tax Benefit? This financial government service is paid monthly to parents who are caring for a child under the age of 18.