Top 3 Ways to Migrate to Canada That Could Get You Permanent Residency

Choosing to immigrate to Canada permanently is a big step and may not be an option for some people. Well, what if we told you that all is not lost if you do not qualify for one of Canada’s top immigration programs?

A lot of people choose to migrate to Canada because not only is it easier to qualify for but it will allow you to live and work in Canada and experience Canadian life in person before committing to make the move to Canada permanently.

How are thousands of people taking this indirect route to becoming a permanent resident? Well, let's take a look at the top 3 ways in which foreign workers find a pathway to Canadian permanent residency.

Top 3 Canadian Migration Options for Foreigners

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1. Study in Canada

One of the most popular ways to move to Canada is by getting a Canadian education. Whether you want to study in Canada as an undergraduate or are thinking of furthering your studies abroad, Canada has hundreds of world-class universities and colleges to choose from.

The best part about getting a Canadian qualification (besides getting an incredible education) is the fact that you could be setting yourself up to gain valuable work experience which could help you qualify for permanent residency in Canada.

There are various provincial and territorial graduate programs that offer international students the opportunity to stay and work in Canada (which we’ll touch on later in this article); however, the most popular route for most foreign students is the Post Graduate Work Permit Program.

Post Graduate Work Permit Program )PGWPP)

Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) allows students who have recently graduated from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) to stay and work in Canada for up to three years.

The length of your Canadian work visa or permit will depend on the length of your study program. For example, if your study program was eight months long (which is the minimum study program length for the PGWP), your work permit will be valid for eight months. If your study program is two years or longer, you could qualify for a three-year work visa for Canada.

2. Work in Canada

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Getting a temporary job in Canada as an immigrant is another great way to get your foot in the door to qualify for permanent residency. Many migrants who land a job offer for Canada end up qualifying to apply to immigrate to Canada through various < ahref=https://canadianvisa.org/canada-immigration/provincial-nominee>Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs). Some provinces have occupation-specific programs that allow skilled workers who have been living and working in Canada for a specified length of time, stay permanently.

Below are some of the provincial and territorial programs that offer permanent residency for skilled workers with Canadian work experience.


PNP Pathways to Permanent Residency
Province or TerritoryImmigration Program
AlbertaAlberta Opportunity Stream
British ColumbiaBritish Columbia Skilled Worker, Semiskilled and Entry Level Streams
ManitobaManitoba: Skilled Workers in Manitoba/Overseas
New BrunswickNew Brunswick Skilled Worker Stream
Newfoundland & LabradorNewfoundland & Labrador priority Skills and Skilled Worker Streams
Northwest TerritoriesNorthwest Territories Skilled Worker, Semiskilled and Entry Level Streams
Nova ScotiaNova Scotia Labour Market Priorities, Skilled Worker, Occupations In-demand, Physician and Nova Scotia Experience (Express Entry) Streams
OntarioOntario Employer Job and Human Capital Streams
Prince Edward IslandPrince Edward Island Critical Workers and Skilled Workers Streams
SaskatchewanSaskatchewan International Skills and Work Experience Streams
YukonYukon Skilled Worker and Critical Impact Worker Streams

When you apply through these programs, if successful you will receive a nomination from the province or territory you are applying to. A provincial nomination, which is worth 600 permanent residency (PR) points can also be used if you want to apply through and Express Entry-linked PNP.

3. Working Holiday

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If you are between the ages of 18 and 30(35) you may be eligible to take a working holiday in Canada. There are three programs that most countries can apply under International Canadian Experience (IEC); Canada’s Working Holiday Visa program.

IEC Categories

  • Working Holiday Visa
  • Young Professionals
  • International Co-op Internship

If you gain at least one year of work experience and have a full-time job offer in Canada you may be eligible to apply for Canadian permanent residency through the Canadian Experience Class managed by Canada’s Express Entry System. In fact, the CEC program is currently offering the most opportunities to apply for Canada PR. On February 13, 2021, the CEC invited 27,332 people to apply for permanent residency and on average issued 5,000 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for PR in Canada’s Express Entry draws so far in 2021.

You will however need to be eligible for Express Entry, which means creating an Express Entry profile. Your profile contains information about your age, language ability, education, work experience as well as your ability to settle in Canada. These factors are then scored and added up to give you what is known as your Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score.

Your profile is then entered into the Express Entry draw pool and your CRS score is ranked against other applicants. Those whose scores meet the CRS cut-off score or score higher will receive an ITA.

Important to note: In order for your Canadian work experience to qualify for PR point it has to be paid work and be full-time ( work a 30 week or less) or the part-time equivalent thereof.

Alternative Fast-track Pathway to Permanent Residency

If you have Canadian work experience and work in essential services, healthcare, sales, industrial, electrical, and construction trades, transportation, education, or the harvesting, landscaping, and natural resources sectors you may be eligible to apply through one of < ahref=https://canadianvisa.org/blog/news/6-new-canadian-immigration-programs-to-be-launched>six new Canadian immigration programs launched on May 6, 2021!

You will need to have acquired at least one year of Canadian Work Experience in the past three years, have a language proficiency of at least CLB/NCLC 4 and have valid temporary resident status in Canada at the time of application.

Top 3 Ways to Migrate to Canada That Could Get You Permanent Residency Infographic | Migrate to Canada

Ready to move to Canada and find your pathway to Canadian Permanent residency?

Whether you intend to become a Canadian graduate and live and work in Canada through the Post-Graduate Work Permit Program or gain valuable work experience and get Canadian PR through a Provincial Nominee Program or the Canadian Experience Class, there is an option for your specific needs.

Canada values its skilled workers and has developed over 100 immigration and visa options to make sure that everyone has a pathway to permanent residency. Find out which programs you’re eligible for and start living your Canadian dream.