Canada is one of the top destinations for immigrants in the world. According to Statista, Canada has one of the world’s highest immigration rates, with over 300,000 new immigrants arriving annually. The figures also show Canada has more than eight million immigrants with Permanent Residence status- almost 21.5 percent of the total population.
There are multiple reasons for this widespread migration. Among other things, Canada is a developed country that ranks highly on many indexes. It provides a standard of living that is enviable for most of the world. It ranked sixteenth in the Human Development Report 2019, compiled by the United Nations, with a score of 0.929. The index measures a range of factors that contribute to development, including life expectancy, literacy rate, access to electricity, GDP per capita, internet availability etc.
Student Immigration is also another contributor to this phenomenon. According to Statistics Canada, the figures for first-time study permit holders have been on a steady incline and touched 250,020 in 2019.
Canada also has one of the largest economies in the world- the 9th largest according to the World Bank data for 2020. This, coupled with Canada’s sparse population (population density of under four people per square kilometre), leads to job vacancies and a constant need for more skilled labour. Many immigrants choose to immigrate through the Canadian Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) and Express Entry programs designed to fill these labour gaps. As of June 2022, job vacancies climbed to 957,500- the highest quarterly number on record.
Canada’s tolerant attitude towards newcomers is another reason for its popularity among immigrants. The Anholt-Ipsos Nations Brands Index 2021, which measures the perception of countries among their peers, ranked Canada second overall, with first-place rankings in Immigration, among other things.
Now that we understand Canada’s attractions, we can proceed to the question on every prospective immigrant’s mind.
How much money is required to immigrate to Canada?
The amount required to migrate to Canada comfortably will depend on various factors. First, you’ll have to consider what program you’re immigrating under (Express Entry, PNP programs etc.), other family numbers, application fees, country of origin, foreign exchange rates etc.
You can enter Canada as a Temporary resident or apply for Permanent Residence.
Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)
An eTA is issued to a person from a visa-exempt nation. It allows the holder to travel to Canada for a short duration. The online application requires a valid passport from an eligible country, your email address, and a valid payment method. It is issued for $7.
Temporary resident Visa (Visitor visa)
It is an official document that allows foreigners to be admissible as temporary residents in Canada. It is available for $100 for an individual and $500 for a family.
Temporary resident permit
It allows a person who does not meet the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) requirements to enter Canada. The application carries a fee of $200.
It allows a parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident (PR) to visit Canada and stay for up to five years. It will enable multiple Entries for ten years.
Other requirements include a signed letter from your child or grandchild who invited you to Canada, including a promise of financial support, a list of people in the household, and a copy of their citizenship or PR and medical insurance from a Canadian insurance company.
The application for a super visa is made online on the IRCC Portal.
If you’re immigrating as a Permanent Resident, you can apply for an Express Entry or the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).
Cost under Express Entry
Express Entry allows skilled workers to apply for Immigration into Canada. It can be further divided into three programs:
- Canadian Experience Class- This is for workers with at least one year of previous work experience as temporary residents in Canada.
- Federal Skilled Worker Program- This program is for workers with foreign work experience who want to immigrate to Canada permanently.
- Federal Skilled Trades Program- This program allows skilled workers to apply for permanent residence based on their qualifications in a skilled trade.
You can submit your application online if you’re eligible for these programs. You’ll be ranked from a pool of candidates based on a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) and invited to apply if you are among the highest-ranking candidates.
Express Entry applications are usually processed within six months of receiving your complete application.
The application carries a fee along with the mandatory language tests, biometrics and medical examinations. The Government of Canada’s website lists them as:
- Application processing fee – 850 $
- Right of permanent residence fee – 515 $. The application and permanent residence fee remain unchanged with the inclusion of a spouse or partner. A dependent child carries an additional 230 $ per child.
- IELTS Language Test – 319 $
- TEF Language Test – 440 $
- Medical Examination – 100-500 $
- Police Clearance – 20 $ on average
- Education Verification – 160 $ for course-by-course, 100 $ for document-by-document.
- Biometrics per person – 85 $
Costs under Provincial Nominee Program
The Canadian Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) allows workers with the required skills and qualifications to migrate to a Canadian province as Permanent Residents.
You apply to the province for nomination after meeting the eligibility requirements. Once you’re nominated, you can submit your application for permanent residence.
The application process and eligibility may vary according to the province. According to arrivein.com, The application fees for immigrants applying under PNP programs were:
- Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program (AINP) – 500 $
- British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) – 1150 $
- Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program (MPNP) – 500 $
- New Brunswick Provincial Nominee Program (NBPNP) – 250 $
- Newfoundland and Labrador Provincial Nominee Program (NLPNP – 250 $
- Nova Scotia Nominee Program (NSNP) – 0
- Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) – 1500 or 2000 $
- Prince Edward Island Provincial Nominee Program (PEI PNP) – 300 $
- Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) – 350 $
This should clear up some questions about how much money you’ll require to immigrate into Canada by some of the most popular routes.
What is Proof of funds? Do I need it?
Proof of funds certifies you have enough money to immigrate and settle in Canada. It is mandatory if you’re applying for a Permanent Residency.
Per the Canadian government’s guidelines, you need an official letter from your Bank or financial institution. The letter must be:
- Printed on the Bank’s letterhead
- Include their contact information.
- Include your name
- List all outstanding debts
- Include account numbers, dates on which the account was opened, the account’s current balance, and the average balance for the past six months.
The amount you’re required to hold is based on the size of your family. The official numbers as shown on the Government of Canada’s website are:
For a single member – $13,310
For 2 – $16,570
For 3 – $20,371
For 4 – $24,733
For 5 – $28,052
For 6 – $31,638
For 7 – $35,224
It amounts to $3,586 for each additional member.
Other Requirements and planning before Immigration
Along with your application fees, you will also have to spend some money to make yourself eligible for Immigration.
To immigrate through the Express Entry route, you must obtain a high CRS score. Investing some time and money in some coaching for your IELTS or CELPIP can significantly elevate your chances of being approved for Immigration.
Prior work experience in Canada is highly valued in your CRS score. It would be best to consider one of two Temporary Work permits, either an Employer-specific work permit or an Open work permit. The application will set you back by 155 $.
Getting a Canadian educational credential is also beneficial for your Express Entry application. The application for a Canadian Study permit costs 150 $ and allows you to study at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI).
Other factors that can help expedite your immigration process, according to CANADIM, are:
- A higher language proficiency
- Bilingualism in English and French
- A Master’s degree or Ph.D. education
- A sibling currently residing in Canada
- An employment offer from a Canadian company
- A nomination from a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)
What Agencies can help me with my immigration process?
According to the Government of Canada’s website, you are allowed to hire a representative or agent to help with your temporary resident visa. It can be an authorized paid representative like a lawyer, paralegals, notaries or citizenship and immigration consultants or unpaid representatives like a family member, friends or a third party.
Visa application centres (VACs) can also help you with Immigration. They are private companies contracted by the Government of Canada to help you with the Visa application process. They can securely send your passport to the visa office and take your biometrics. They also provide access to a computer for online applications.
A list of every VAC operating in different countries and their websites can be found on the Government of Canada’s website.
Other agencies that can help you with Immigration are:
- Travel agents
- Educational agents and
- Adoption agencies
What is the cheapest city to immigrate to in Canada?
The amount of money you’ll require also depends on your choice of city and province. According to Zumper’s data on 23 major Canadian metro areas, the cities with the lowest one-bedroom median rent prices were:
St John’s, NL- $850
Regina, SK- $970
Saskatoon, SK- $990
Edmonton, AB- $1000
Quebec, QC- $1070
In contrast, popular cities like Toronto (89), Vancouver (108), Montreal (125), Ottawa (132) and Calgary (141) all predictably featured among the most expensive cities in the Mercer Cost of Living rankings.
To summarize, immigrating to Canada is not a cheap venture for citizens of most countries. It requires years of careful planning and understanding of the means available to you.
Your chances of immigrating through the Express Entry and Provincial Nominee Programs depend heavily on your professional skill set and suitability for Canadian job markets. Our guide should give you a brief understanding of these programs and the costs involved.
We welcome you to share with our community of Newcomers, prospective immigrants and well-wishers. Thousands would love to hear from you and benefit from your experiences.