There are only a handful of universal truths out there, and one of them states that sometimes things can change in the blink of an eye. Or even faster! Residential moves are usually triggered by some kind of a change which in turn introduces the transitional period of moving house.
The reasons for moving out can vary greatly, from personal reasons (marriage, divorce, retirement, health issues, etc.) through circumstantial ones (neighborhood becoming too expensive, dangerous or polluted, or maybe even the unfavorable result of the recent presidential election) to professional ones (a new job or a job promotion in a new city). And at times, the relocation road will take you to another country altogether! (Why do people move abroad?)
If you’re about to move to Canada – the friendly neighboring country to the north, then you might be wondering whether moving to Canada is a good idea. Well, get this – it has been named the best place to live every single year for the last 22 years. And that rating is not just about North America, it’s about the entire world! Now, what do you have to say about that?
So, yes, you’ve made the right choice deciding to move to Canada. This brief guide to moving to Canada will highlight the major steps of what you should do make that international move happen, including solid advice on how to move to Canada from the United States.
What to know before moving to Canada
Regardless of your specific reasons to move to Canada, the very first thing you should do is make sure you know a bit more about your next door neighbors, about their country in general and the way life is up there in the north. That initial information will help you decide for sure if you’re 100% ready for that big step.
- The job market is strong, stable and offers excellent job opportunities and a favorable business environment.
- The healthcare in Canada in one of the best in the world – high quality, dependable and free.
- The overall safety in the country is unrivaled – the stringent gun control, reliable police forces and Canadians’ mentality are all reflected in the extremely low crime rates.
- The educational system in the neighboring country is top-notch. According to numerous studies, Canada is rated as the best educated country in the world.
- The diverse country in the northern half of North America boasts beautiful nature with breathtaking oceans, forests, mountains, plains, and even glaciers. If you enjoy outdoor activities, then moving to Canada is the right way to go.
Requirements for moving to Canada as an American
It doesn’t really matter if you’re just considering moving to the country north of you or you’ve already made up your mind to do it as soon as possible, you will surely have tons of questions about moving to Canada, including the requirements to relocate there as an U.S. citizen.
The first step is to visit the immigration section of the official website of the Canadian government. Once there, you can determine your eligibility to move to Canada with the intention to live and work there. The website will help you figure out the main aspects of your international move such as the right immigration program for you and detailed information about how to apply to immigrate, how to prepare for your life in Canada, and even how to protect yourself from fraud.
Also, the website CanadaVisa offers a super detailed article about moving to Canada from the U.S. In it, you can find everything all the steps to moving to Canada presented in a clear non-ambiguous way. Learn how to obtain a Canadian work visa, how you can work there without a work permit, how you can study in the country or even do business in there. The topic of bringing your family with you is also extensively covered, as is the all-important subject of how you will settle in Canada.
I want to move to Canada, where do I start?
As you know, when moving house there’s a big difference between wanting something and doing something. And when you’re moving to another country altogether, then that difference suddenly becomes HUGE.
So, the decision has been made – you want to move to Canada and nothing and no one can possibly stop you. Now the big question is what to do next, right? Follow this concise checklist for moving to Canada to use the remaining time in the best possible way and reduce the stress that’s inevitably present with the upcoming country to country move and everything.
SEE ALSO: How to prepare for moving abroad?
Your moving to Canada checklist:
- Re-assess your final decision to move to Canada by asking yourself the hard questions.
- Speak openly with your family members and discuss in detail the pros and cons of moving to Canada from the U.S.
- Decide where exactly in Canada you want to move to: which province and which city. Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Quebec City – Canada is full of great places you can call your new home.
- If your decision is final, visit the Canadian Government website and CanadaVisa (the links are given above) to read crucial information about your move to Canada.
- Check your eligibility to immigrate to Canada.
- Apply for the appropriate type of immigration visa as soon as you can.
- Start searching for a home in the area and city you’re planning to relocate to. Choosing temporary housing is also an acceptable option in the very beginning.
- Notify your landlord of your move if you’re a renter or prepare your current home for sale if you’re an owner.
- Are you flying or driving to Canada? Make the necessary arrangements ahead of time to save big.
READ ALSO: How to prepare my car for shipping?
- Start gathering up all the important documents you and your family members have in one place – passports, birth certificates, marriage certificates, professional qualifications, diplomas, etc.
- Get the required medical records of all members, including your pets. If you have school-age kids, get their school records too.
- Keep your current credit/debit cards and bank accounts until you settle down.
- Purchase medical insurance because, you know, anything can happen on the road.
- How much will moving to Canada cost you? Find and research a few top-rated international moving companies, then ask them for price estimates.
- Book the services of the U.S. to Canada mover who has offered both great moving services and an affordable price.
- Create a moving budget to see where your stand from a financial standpoint.
- Use every hour of every day to the fullest by drawing up a handy moving calendar.
- Decide what possessions you’re taking with you to Canada. Be prepared for some really tough decisions.
- The number one rule you should abide by? Take only the things you will actually need, and then get rid of the rest.
- It’s time to start thinking about packing up your stuff. Professional packers will do a fine job if you can afford them. If not, access our international packing tips to get started.
MUST READ: How to pack for an international move?
- Say goodbye to your good friends and promise them you’ll keep in touch.