Canada Immigration News: Canada’s Working Holiday Visa program, also known as International Experience Canada (IEC), is open for a new season. It's off to an incredible start in the first three weeks since it's started accepting applications. It has already issued 22,384 invitations to working holiday applicants since the season opened on January 13, 2022!
Applicants from Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, and various Asian countries are among the thousands who have already received invitations. And to top it off, 2021 applicants that had entered and didn’t get an invitation were automatically entered into the 2022 draw pool!
On average, the chances of getting an invitation to apply for a working holiday visa are fair to excellent for the 2022 season.
What is the IEC and How Do I Apply?
Canada’s Working Holiday Program welcomes applicants from across the globe to come to Canada and experience it in a way like no other. Essentially you get the best of both worlds. You get to travel and discover the beauty of Canada while experiencing what life could be like to live and work as a true Canadian for up to two years!
International Experience Canada
International Experience Canada (IEC) is open to people aged 18 to 35 (in some cases 30) from over 30 different countries. Below are the eligible countries:
- Costa Rica
- Czech Republic
- Hong Kong
- Korea, Rep.
- New Zealand
- San Marino
- United Kingdom
There are three different programs that you could apply through:
1. Working Holiday Visa (WHV)
Canada’s Working Holiday Visa program will allow you to travel and work in Canada without a job offer. You won’t be restricted when it comes to choosing who you want to work for or where you want to work in Canada. You’ll have the freedom to travel at your own pace and work wherever you like.
2. Young Professionals
The Young Professionals program is ideal if you have a job offer in Canada that will add to your development as a professional. Your work must be paid, and you will only be able to work for one employer in a specific province or territory. You will not be eligible to apply as a self-employed person.
3. International Co-op (internship)
If you are studying at a university or college and have been offered a job for a work placement or internship in Canada, you may be eligible to apply for your IEC visa through this program. Like the Young Professionals category, you will only be limited to working for a specific employer in a specific location.
How to Apply for a Working Holiday Visa in Canada
Applying for a Working Holiday Visa can be done in four simple steps.
Step 1. Check your eligibility
If you are a citizen of one of the participating countries and know that you qualify for at least one of the IEC programs, you will need to check that you meet the other program requirements:
- Be fully vaccinated;
- Have a valid passport;
- Meet the age requirements based on your nationality
- Have at least $2,500 (Canadian);
- Have health insurance;
- Have a return flight ticket
Step 2. Create your online IEC profile
Although you will only be able to create one IEC profile at a time, you could qualify for more than one IEC program. Creating a profile is free, and you will only be required to pay visa fees once you get an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for a work permit. Invitations are usually issued in the following order:
- International Co-op (Internship)
- Young Professionals
- Working Holiday
In other words, if you qualify for the Working Holiday and Young Professionals programs, you will receive an invitation to apply for a work permit through the Young Professionals category. If, however, there are no more spots available, you get an invitation through the Working Holiday Program.
3. Gather your supporting documents
While you’re waiting for your application to be processed, it's a good idea to start collecting your supporting documents. This will help speed up the application process and lower the chances of missing your application deadline. You will get a personalized checklist of documents that will need to be uploaded to your profile. Once you get your ITA, you’ll have 30 days to submit them.
Below are some of the documents you may need:
- Proof of finances;
- Digital photo;
- Health insurance
- Police clearance;
- Medical exams;
4. Receive your ITA and apply for your work visa
Your profile will be entered into a draw pool from which eligible applicants are regularly selected and given invitations to apply for a work permit. Each round of invitations issues several candidates with ITAs, depending on how many spots are still available. Once there are no more spots available, the season closes.
If your profile is selected, you’ll get an invitation to apply for an open or employer-specific work permit, depending on which program you qualified for. Once you have submitted your application, you’ll need to pay your visa application fees, which start at $156. All that’s left is to check your Canada Working Holiday Visa application status, which you can do via your IEC profile.
And that’s it! Soon you could be jetting off to Canada to start the adventure of a lifetime.
Ready to see if you qualify? Simply click the link below to get started!