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How to Settle in Canada from India – Requirements & Process

Updated on 02 February, 2024

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

According to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada data, there was an increase of 260% of Indians who became permanent residents in Canada from 32,828 in 2013 to 118,095 in 2022. 

Hence for many ambitious souls in India, Canada emerges as a beacon of hope, offering a promising haven for those seeking a better life and brighter future. The article will be helpful for Indians who want to know how to migrate to Canada from India.  

Read More: Cost of Living in Canada

Requirements to Move to Canada from India

Canada has multiple immigrant policies that cater to various candidates aspiring to land the best universities and the best-paying jobs. Since January 2015, the Canada Express Entry system has been the most comprehensive way to apply for permanent residency in Canada. Some requirements for Canadian citizenship are: 

  1. Age: If you are applying for Canadian citizenship, you must be 18 years or above. If not, you should have a host, parent, or relative in Canada ready to sponsor you. 
  2. Time: If you are applying for citizenship in Canada, you must have at least lived in the country for three years. Children under 18 do not meet this requirement if not born in Canada.  
  3. Language: English and French are the official languages of Canada. If you want to apply for citizenship and even temporary residence, you need to be proficient in at least one language, if not both. 
  4. Background record: If you have a criminal history, links with heavy violence, or a black mark from your home country, you are automatically not eligible to live in Canada, let alone apply for citizenship.


Process of Migrating to Canada for People of India

Migrating to Canada from India involves several steps and processes. Here is a general overview of the steps to help you understand the process: 

  1. Reaffirming your eligibility 
  2. IELTS certificate submission and get your educational credential assessment done 
  3. Make an Express entry profile 
  4. Keep your documents ready 
  5. Apply for a visa within 60 days of getting an ITA 
  6. Get yourself medically examined and submit the reports 
  7. Get your VISA stamped.

Read More: Germany v/s Canada: Which is better to study abroad

Why Should You Settle in Canada

Settling in Canada can offer numerous advantages for individuals and families. Here are some compelling reasons why many people consider Canada an ideal place to settle:

  1. High Quality of Life: Canada consistently ranks high in global quality of life indexes due to its excellent healthcare system, education, social services, and safety and security.
  2. Strong Economy: Canada has a stable and diverse economy, offering various job opportunities across multiple sectors, making it an attractive destination for skilled workers and entrepreneurs.
  3. Immigration-Friendly Policies: Canada has a history of being open and welcoming to immigrants. The country has well-established immigration programs designed to attract skilled workers, students, and family members.
  4. Multicultural Society: Canada is known for its cultural diversity and inclusiveness. The country celebrates various ethnicities, languages, and religions, making it easier for newcomers to adapt and integrate into society.
  5. Access to Education: Canada offers high-quality education, including top-ranked universities and colleges. For those with children, this means excellent educational opportunities and prospects.
  6. Healthcare System: Canada provides universal healthcare coverage for its residents, ensuring that individuals can access essential medical services without significant financial burdens.
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Types of Immigration in Canada 

There are four immigrants to Canada that make up the bulk of the immigrations to the country. These are:

1. Family Class Members

This is for people with families or relatives living in Canada who have agreed to assist you financially. If you have your spouse, family, law partner, or business partner living in Canada and consent to sponsor, you can immigrate to Canada from India under the family immigration policy. Following this, you are also eligible for further obtaining permanent citizenship. A Canadian family member can sponsor the following:

  1. Spouse, conjugal partner, common-law partner, or dependent children
  2. Parents and grandparents
  3. Immediate relatives
  4. Adopted children

2. Economic Immigrants

This category includes skilled workers seeking to live permanently in Canada. Since 2015, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) have offered an electronic system called Express Entry to manage applications under economic programs, focusing on skilled labor that falls under any business. It is further divided into three other categories: 

a) Skilled Worker Class: This is for trained professionals who want to reside permanently in Canada. People seeking permanent residence under this category must be trained students or workers who can contribute to Canada’s growing economy. There are three programs through which a skilled worker class can immigrate to Canada.

i) Express Entry

The Express Entry is one of the fastest online systems through which skilled workers with three or more years of work experience can apply to immigrate to Canada. The Express Entry system manages the applications of candidates and assesses their eligibility on a Comprehensive Ranking System.

ii) Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

This program covers individuals with educational qualifications, skills, and work experience to contribute to a specific province or territory of Canada. Skilled workers who want to live in a particular province and become permanent residents of Canada are also eligible to apply for immigration under PNP.

iii) Quebec Immigration

The Government of Canada and the province of Quebec have a special agreement on immigration. Therefore, the Quebec immigration system permits skilled workers to live in Quebec by becoming permanent residents of Canada. The application process is divided into two stages – apply for a Quebec Selection Certificate from the Government of Quebec. Once the application is reviewed, and the certificate is issued it means that the province has accepted you as an immigrant. After getting the certificate, you must apply to the Immigration, Refugees, and Immigration Canada (IRCC).

b) Business-class: Entrepreneurs, self-employed immigrants, and investors are eligible for attaining permanent citizenship if they have the funds, required skills, and the required experience to make their company and business grow in Canada. There are two ways under which a person can immigrate to Canada under the business class:

i) Start-up Visa

The Start-up Visa program in Canada for the business class focuses on entrepreneurs who want to immigrate to the country and have the potential and skills to build a business. The condition to apply under this program is that the individuals should be innovative, compete globally, and create jobs for Canadians.

ii) Self-employed persons

The self-employed persons’ program authorizes potential entrepreneurs’ immigration to Canada from India as self-employed persons. Suppose you want to apply for this program. In that case, you must have relevant experience in cultural or athletic activities and should be willing to make a significant contribution towards the same.

c) Canadian Experience Class: This is for people living in Canada temporarily who want to change this status to permanent residency. It is meant for skilled and experienced workers to reside permanently in Canada and contribute to economic growth. People like students, expats, or those well versed in multiple languages who think they can adjust well to living in Canada can become permanent residents under various programs offered in this category.

i) Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot

This community-driven program is designed to roll out the benefits of economic immigration to smaller communities. This paves the way for skilled foreign workers to get permanent residence in Canada to work in one of the participating communities. 

ii) Agri-Food Pilot

This program provides the pathway to immigrate to Canada by working in specific agri-food industries. It addresses the labor needs of the agri-food sector in Canada so that non-seasonal and experienced workers in the occupation can become permanent residents of the country. 

iii) Health-care workers’ permanent residence pathway

This program has paved the way for refugee claimants who provided healthcare services during the COVID-19 pandemic to immigrate to Canada. The applicant should have experience rendering patient care as a part of their job. 

iv) Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (EMPP)

The EMPP is a tailored economic program that helps skilled refugees immigrate to Canada to support the country’s labor market needs. The second phase of EMPP focuses on settling 500 skilled refugees and their families in Canada. They will be assessed using economic immigration requirements.

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3. Humanitarian and Compassionate Applicants

These applicants are not usually eligible to live in Canada but have emotional aspects behind choosing otherwise. These reasons include the betterment of their child, family relations and responsibilities, and so on. People seeking residence under this category must have a reason to overpower their ineligibility to apply for Canadian citizenship. 

4. Refugee class

This is for immigrants who cannot return to their home country due to safety concerns. These people might seek a temporary settlement or want to reside permanently in Canada. They can either be sponsored or buy their way into doing it. 

Contrary to people who can seek immigration to Canada, some people are not allowed to enter or settle in the country. People inadmissible in Canada can be due to: 

  1. Security concerns 
  2. Rights violation 
  3. Criminal background  
  4. Links with terrorism  
  5. Financial problems  
  6. Health issues 
  7. Misrepresentation or forging of identity 
  8. Inadmissible family background 

Study Bachelors in Canada and gain PR – Get free Counselling

How to Settle in Canada With Your Family

Settling in Canada with your family involves several steps and considerations. The process can vary depending on the type of immigration program you choose and your family members' specific circumstances. Here's a general overview of the steps to help you get started:

  1. Determine Eligibility: The first step is to check if you and your family are eligible to immigrate to Canada. There are various immigration pathways, including Express Entry (for skilled workers), Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), Family Sponsorship, and more. Each program has specific eligibility criteria, so it's essential to research and find the one that suits your situation best.
  2. Select an Immigration Program: Based on your eligibility, choose the most suitable immigration program for you and your family. The Express Entry system is a popular choice for skilled workers, while the Family Sponsorship program allows Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their family members' immigration.
  3. Gather Documents: Once you have selected the appropriate immigration program, gather all the required documents for your application. This may include passports, birth certificates, marriage certificates, educational credentials, work experience letters, language proficiency test results (e.g., IELTS or CELPIP), police clearance certificates, and medical examinations.
  4. Apply for Immigration: Submit your application through the official Canadian government website or relevant authorities. Follow the instructions carefully and ensure that all documents are complete and accurate. Pay the necessary fees and wait for the processing time, which can vary depending on the program and your country of residence.
  5. Medical Examinations and Police Clearance: As part of the immigration process, you and your family may need medical examinations to ensure you meet health requirements. Additionally, you might be required to obtain police clearance certificates from countries where you have lived for a certain period.
  6. Receive Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR): If your application is approved, you will receive a Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) for yourself and your family members included in the application.
  7. Prepare for Arrival: Before moving to Canada, arrange your initial stay, such as temporary accommodation and transportation. Research the city or province where you plan to settle to understand the cost of living, available services, and job opportunities.

Settle in Canada: Once you arrive in Canada with your family, you'll need to complete some essential tasks, such as obtaining a Social Insurance Number (SIN), opening a bank account, and finding permanent housing. Additionally, look into enrolling your children in schools and accessing healthcare services.

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Best Cities to Settle in Canada

Canada offers several excellent cities to settle in, each with unique charm and opportunities. However, individual preferences and priorities significantly determine the "best" city for someone to settle in. Here are some cities known for their quality of life, economic opportunities, and cultural amenities:

1. Toronto

It is the largest city in Canada with a population of 3 million (extremely new to Indian people). Toronto is the first choice of most immigrants because of its cultural versatility. Half of Toronto’s population was born outside, and the other half has a family background worldwide. It is home to many technology companies and has a strong media presence. Toronto is snowy most of the year, but the housing facilities and the infrastructure can fight it effortlessly.

2. Vancouver

It ranks as the fifth most livable city in the world. Vancouver is known for its stunning natural beauty with mountains and the ocean nearby, Vancouver is a vibrant and environmentally conscious city. It has a mild climate, a diverse population, and a strong economy. However, housing affordability can be a significant challenge in this city.

3. Ottawa

Being the administrative capital of Canada, Ottawa is reputed for hosting some of the country’s biggest annual festivals and is known as Canada’s festival capital. One of Ottawa’s main  tourist attractions, the Rideau Canal, is turned into the world’s largest skating rinks during the Winterlude, and ice and snow sculpture competitions are organized. During the Winterlude, you can also witness several musical concerts staged around the city and parks in Gatineau. The city also offers a host of performance centers for drama and music throughout the city, with the National Arts Center renowned for its French and English theater.

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All about Canada PR

A Canadian permanent resident is someone who has migrated to the country for work purposes and is granted permanent residence status. Upon receiving the PR status, the person who becomes a Canadian citizen needs to meet certain requirements like the residency obligation.

There are various pathways to receive a permanent residence status in Canada – Business Immigration, Sponsorship, Economic immigration, and Refugee or Humanitarian programs. Upon immigration to Canada from India, a person can apply for Canadian PR. Here are the benefits that a person can enjoy on getting Permanent Residence status in Canada.

  1. Right to stay, study and work anywhere in Canada.
  2. Access to world-class healthcare and social services in Canada.
  3. Liable to receive protection under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and Canadian law.
  4. The Canadian Permanent Resident card or permanent resident travel documents allow a person to enter and leave Canada’s borders.
  5. Getting a PR in Canada is the first step towards becoming a Canadian citizen, as you can apply for it after being a permanent resident for at least 3 out of 5 years. 

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Work Permits in Canada

A Canadian Work Permit or Work Visa is issued to an individual eligible to work overseas for a specified period of time. After you get an employment contract from a Canadian employer, you can apply for a visa, and it eases the process of immigration to Canada from India. More than 3,00,000 individuals are granted work permits every year to work in Canada There are four pathways under which you can receive a work permit in Canada. 

LMIA-Based work permit

An employer in Canada requires a Labour Market Impact Assessment or LMIA to offer Canadian jobs to Indian people. Once an employer receives the LMIA, the worker becomes eligible to apply for a work permit. However, the employee needs to furnish their job offer letter, contract, LMIA, and a copy of LMIA. 

Post Graduate Work Permit Program (PGWPP)

This program sanctions work permits for students who have graduated from eligible Canadian Designated Learning Institutions (DLIs) to gain relevant work experience in Canada. This program helps graduates become eligible for PR in Canada within the Express Entry System of Canadian Experience Class. 

Working Holiday

The Working Holiday work permit offers opportunities to young graduates from 30 countries to live and work legally in Canada. A work permit under this program will be valid for 12 or 24 months, depending on the country of citizenship.

International Experience Canada (IEC)

This program allows young people to immigrate and work in Canada for up to 2 years. To apply under this program, you must belong to a country that has an agreement with Canada, or you may be able to use a recognized organization. 

Procedure to Apply for Canadian Citizenship

To apply for Canadian citizenship, you must be above 18 years old, file your taxes, pass a citizenship test, live in Canada for at least 3 out of 5 years, and should be able to prove your language proficiency. Here are some of the guidelines you must follow to get Canadian citizenship.

  1. Apply online on Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada website
  2. Apply on paper
  3. Get an application package which is an instruction guide to all the forms that need to be filled up.
  4. Pay the application fee, including the right of citizenship and processing fees.
  5. Sign the application form and courier it to Case Processing  Centre – Sydney’s address which is Citizenship Grants, 47-47 Dorchester Street, Sydney, Nova Scotia  B1P 5Z2. 

Things to do Before Moving to Canada From India

Before embarking on a journey to a new country, you must ensure certain things so that you don’t land yourself in trouble. Preparing for the weather in Canada and carrying clothes accordingly is essential. 

You must prepare for things much before the departure to Canada, and here are some of the things you need to keep with you.

  • Documents like Passport and CoPR should be kept in handy. Along with it, some of the other required documents (as may be applicable) are as follows:

a) Education diplomas and degrees

b) Employment record

c) Marriage certificate

d) Birth certificate of kids

e) Marriage certificate (though not mandatory)

f) Passport size photographs

g) Job offer letter

h) Driving license extract

i) Vaccination booklet for your baby

  • Carry some Canadian Dollars or travel cards
  • Make a list of the clothes you want to carry, use a duffel bag instead of a suitcase, roll your clothes and get vacuum bags. 
  • Carry necessary utensils like a saucepan, bowls, glasses, spoons, and steel plates.
  • Once you land in Canada, take health insurance in Canada for new immigrants because it is mandatory for everyone to have one.
  • Miscellaneous components
  • Chargers and power plug connectors
  • Laptop
  • Bedsheets and comforter
  • Flip flops
  • Medicines
  • Toiletries
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Nail cutter and scissors
  • Baby stuff and all their necessary items if you have a kid traveling with you

Frequently Asked Questions

How to become a permanent resident of Canada?

Becoming a permanent resident of Canada involves going through a process called immigration. You can apply for permanent residency in Canada through several pathways, the most common pathways are:

  1. Express Entry System
  2. Provincial Nominee Program (PNP
  3. Family Sponsorship
  4. Canadian Experience Class (CEC):
  5. Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP): 

What are the benefits for Indians if they become permanent residents in Canada?

Indian people are known for their skills and intelligence, and Canada is not unaware of this fact. Canada has a few special immigration programs especially meant for Indian people, and you are free to use them. Some of the benefits of living in Canada are:

1) The perks of social life

2) Availing facilities of healthcare and the education system

3) The freedom to live and work in any Canadian city

4) Eligibility for acquiring a Canadian citizenship

5) Protection under the Canadian law.

Is full-time employment a mandatory requirement for the skilled worker class?

Yes. During the initial stage, the worker should have at least one-year prior experience in one of the major sectors such as health, trade, or finance. They should have an offer of employment without which there is no proof of it.

Does it help if you have connections in Canada?

Yes. Your relatives in Canada can be a big help since if they agree to sponsor you financially, you can live in Canada temporarily. After you have completed your required period of temporary stay, you can then apply for permanent citizenship.

Which is the best place to settle in Canada?

The definition of best varies from person to person and their needs. As different people may look for different characteristics of cities, so changes their model of the best place. For reference, you can look at the cities mentioned here and choose for yourself. Also, you can look around and contact people from Canada to get a better insight into the place they are from. They will be able to offer you better advice.

Is it worth moving to Canada from India?

Moving to a different country is a significant life decision that depends on various personal factors, such as your goals, preferences, and circumstances. When considering moving to Canada from India, you should take into account the following aspects:

  1. Immigration Policies
  2. Job Opportunities
  3. Quality of Life
  4. Cost of Living
  5. Cultural Adjustment
  6. Support System
  7. Weather
  8. Long-Term Plans

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

We are a dedicated team of study-abroad experts, ensuring intensive research and comprehensive information in each of our blogs. With every piece written, we aim at simplifying the overseas education process for all. Our diverse experience as journalists, content writers, editors, content strategists, and marketers helps create the most relevant and authentic blogs for our readers.

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