Canadian Working Holiday Visa Options for Italians

The youth mobility program between Canada and Italy has been significantly expanded, meaning more youth workers are being granted visas to work between the two countries than ever before. There are thousands of seasonal jobs available to foreign workers throughout Canada in just about every industry you can imagine. From tourism to agriculture, retail to childcare, there is something for everyone. 

The International Experience Canada visa program is a unique program that allows citizens of certain countries to come to Canada on a working holiday and travel in Canada for up to six months. According to the new agreement, the Canadian working holiday visa option for Italians will allow you to work in Canada for up to 12 months and then extend your stay for a further 12 months as a visitor if you choose! This means you could come to visit and work in Canada for up to two years on a temporary basis, after which you will probably be asking how you can make your visit permanent, but let’s not stray onto that just yet.  

For recent university graduates and students, there are also programs to aid in your professional development and make you more marketable on a global scale by allowing you to accumulate invaluable international experience. Your trip to Canada will almost certainly be life-changing, so what are you waiting for?  

Working Holiday Visa Requirements

Canadian countryside

As an Italian citizen, you can only participate in the IEC once. Make sure you will have adequate time for your Canadian adventure, you don’t want to have to cut your cultural tour of Vancouver or your hike through Banff short because of responsibilities back home. To be eligible for the IEC working holiday visa you must:  

  • Be an Italian citizen;
  • Hold a valid Italian passport valid past your intended visit to Canada;
  • Prove you are an Italian resident when you apply for your IEC visa;
    • You can show this with any form of proof of address
  • Be between the age of 18 and 35;
  • Show you have a minimum of $2,500 CAD in savings for any initial or unplanned expenses that arise in Canada;
  • Have health insurance for the duration of your stay, you will also need to show proof of your insurance at the border when you arrive;
  • Be admissible to Canada ie. you can’t have a criminal record;
  • Have a round trip ticket back to Italy, or proof of funds to be able to cover the cost of a return ticket; and
  • Understand that dependents are not permitted to accompany you under an IEC visa.

If you are successful in your application for a Canadian Working Holiday Visa for Italians, you will be issued an open work permit valid for one year. This type of work permit will allow you to work in any temporary job you may find in Canada.    

IEC: Young Professionals Visa

If you have recently graduated from university and have a limited-term job offer in Canada that will contribute to your professional development, this is the visa option for you. The position must be paid and cannot be recognized as self-employment. If you meet the requirements listed above, you will be issued an employer-specific work permit. This means that you will only be allowed to work for one employer, the one who made you the job offer, on your IEC Young Professionals visa.  

IEC: International Co-op Visa

More commonly known and the IEC Internship visa, if you have a short-term work placement that is key to the completion of your studies, you can apply for this visa. You must be a registered student at a post-secondary school and your job offer must be at one location in Canada. Internships do not need to be for paid work, it will depend on the labour laws of the province. Like the Young Professionals visa, you will be issued an employer-specific work permit, so once your internship is complete, you will not be legally allowed to work for any other employer in Canada. Remember that you can extend your visitor permit for a further six months to enjoy everything amazing that Canada has to offer. 

Popular Working Holiday Jobs in Canada for ItaliansYoung Italian picking cherries in Canada

Depending on which season you choose to work in Canada, you will have two very different experiences. Much like Italy, Canada gets snow in winter. Unlike in Italy, the whole of the country gets snow, for four or five months, and a lot of it! The best jobs are seasonal, you can make a lot of money to help you fund your travels through Canada in between jobs, or you can buckle down in one position, make a bundle and then take a longer trip around the country when you’re done.  

Winter Jobs in Canada

While there are a lot of options for your winter working holiday in Canada, working in a ski resort is probably your best bet. Just about all resorts offer accommodation to their seasonal workers and the wages aren’t too bad either. You can make around $13 an hour and if you end up as a server or bartender, there’ll be tips on top of that. You will also get to experience some of the most beautiful parts of Canada that it would have cost you a fortune to visit anyway, absolutely free! 

Summer Jobs in Canada

Get back to the earth by taking a seasonal job on a farm. Canada has some of the most beautiful landscapes in the world and a touch of manual labour may just give you the change in perspective you’re looking for. You will gain invaluable skills and you can work on small farms across the country. Cherry pickers are one such job, with the benefit of your wage being determined by your load and not per hour. There are picking jobs across Canada in the summer, and many other opportunities too.

There is also always the classic camp counsellor summer job, where you will have a great time meeting other young counsellors from Canada and the rest of the world and taking young children on outings and adventures in the Canadian wilderness. Some other popular summer jobs include working at amusement parks, home painting, and retail service. 

The Current Situation

If you are interested in working and traveling in Canada as an Italian, the good news is that you can start your application for an IEC visa now. As soon as it is safe to travel abroad, the Canadian government will give us the green light. In a recent interview Marco Mendicino stated: 

“I’m very pleased that we were able to reach this agreement with Italy, which will provide both Canadian and Italian youth with even more opportunities to live, travel, and work abroad once it is safe to do so. We live in an increasingly interconnected world where innovation often comes from those who have traveled widely, who have an appreciation for other cultures, and whose eyes have been opened to new ideas, insights, and ways of doing things.”

Are You Ready to Work and Travel in Canada?

Italian boarding a flight to Canada

There are three main Canadian working holiday visa options for Italians; the Young Professional visa, the International Co-op visa, and the IEC Working Holiday visa, which has recently been expanded especially to accommodate more Italians who want to work and travel in Canada.

If you want to have the life-changing experience of working abroad but don’t want the admin, fill out our application form to get the process going and let us take care of the rest. It’s just that simple! Your Canadian journey starts here.

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