Moving to a new country is an exciting and challenging endeavour. Since you will be making a home in a completely different location, you will need to adjust to differences in language, weather, culture and more.
This is true if, for example, you are immigrating to Canada from Dubai or Nigeria.
Canada is an immigrant-friendly country, so adapting to this new environment may come with few obstacles, if any. In fact, most immigrants have overcome such challenges with ease – so you can aim to do so, too!
Here are some tips to help you get settled in this country and feel at home in no time.
1. Familiarize yourself with the city you want to live in
Even before you go, it is crucial for you to know as much as you can about the place you have chosen to work and live in. This will help you make important decisions on different aspects of your life.
For instance, study the city’s map and locate places where you will most likely spend most of your time. Understanding the public transportation system is a crucial aspect of this. Remember that this country has one of the best transportation systems available, so it would be beneficial to take advantage of such. It will save you not just time, but money as well.
When you gain a good grasp of how public transportation in Canada works, it will be much easier for you to get around, especially when going to and from grocery stores, churches, schools, banks, pharmacies, hospitals, government offices, and other important establishments.
2. Take advantage of the programs that the government provides newcomers
Did you know that the Canadian government offers different programs to help newcomers settle in? Although this entails completing paperwork, and can thus be somewhat time-consuming, it is worth it because these programs will entitle you to certain privileges and benefits.
For instance, the Canadian government lets immigrants take part in English language classes so you can improve your communication skills. Other programs, if you are eligible, can grant you loans of up to $45,000 so you can start your own business.
If you wish to get work experience, the Federal Internship Program can help you. You just have to do research on all the programs that you can apply for.
3. Invest in yourself
Investing in yourself is a good way to become an asset to your workplace. This can help provide you with better work opportunities and make living in Canada easier and more successful for you.
First, aim to improve your English literacy skill. As mentioned earlier, you can take English language classes sponsored by the Canadian government, especially if English isn’t your first language. Remember that if you have an academic certification in English, you may find it easier to advance in your career in the country.
Second, upgrade your education to the level that is required by reputable employers. This may entail juggling additional responsibilities, but after you have attained a higher degree of learning, the rewards will surely outweigh all your efforts. You will then be able to work in your area of interest sooner.
Lastly, get some work experience. Even if you have impressive educational credentials, you may not get the kind of work you want in Canada right away. In this case, learn to be patient because even in this land of opportunities, there is no shortcut to success.
Instead, if applicable, decide to take what is initially being offered to you. For instance, you can consider working at a fast food chain or in a factory in the meantime. This will help you earn money for the additional education and the Canadian work experience you need to reach your dream job in the future.
4. Develop your network
As an immigrant, it is a must for you to build a quality network. You can start by engaging your co-workers, attending events, and talking to the locals. Also, get in touch with other immigrants. These individuals have a better understanding of what you are going through, share many of the same experiences, and can even help you better understand the different challenges involved when settling down in Canada.
5. Spend wisely and build up good credit
Whether you have limited or sufficient financial resources, it is important that you spend your money wisely, especially for your first couple of months in Canada.
Save your money and invest in something that offers rewards later on, such as your education or real estate. Don’t waste your money on unnecessary items or travels just because your co-workers are doing so. Also, you must build up your credit with your bank because this will help you later on, especially if you want to purchase a car or a house.
6. Relocate when necessary
Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto are some of the popular destinations for immigrants in Canada. For this reason, the job markets in these locations can be competitive and the daily expenses may seem higher.
So if you are given the opportunity to relocate, perhaps by your current employer, consider moving to Alberta, Manitoba, or other smaller towns. Don’t forget to create a moving checklist to make the relocation process a lot easier.
Should you decide to move to a different part of Canada, you would still find ways to earn money and gain relevant Canadian work experience. Besides, you can always go back to the bigger cities once you are financially stable and you have attained improved work qualifications.
7. Have fun
Living in Canada is not all about finding employment and earning money. Find time to explore some of the tourist destinations every now and then. Canada is home to lots of natural attractions, so make sure to visit them, either on your own or with family and new friends. Making time for relaxation and recreation will help you appreciate your new home more.
Adapting to a new environment does not happen overnight. While relocating to Canada may challenge you and require some effort, it is not impossible to achieve. Get to know the country and the specific area you will be living in, invest in yourself, make new friends, and have fun. This is the best way to make the transition smoother and more rewarding.