Working Holiday Visa in Canada (IEC 2023) | CanadianVisa (2023)

A working holiday can be a truly life-altering experience. It allows you to have a wide variety of life experiences by living, working and travelling to different environments. A working holiday will enable you to get to know many different cultures, environments and people from all walks of life. This can teach you new approaches to business, experience a foreign country, and develop your language skills.

All of this can provide you with the knowledge and understanding you can carry with you for the rest of your life. As a result, a working holiday in Canada is a fantastic option for those looking to gain life experience - it is also hugely beneficial to Canadian work experience to better compete in the global economy. If you're a travel influencer or love to travel, backpack, and explore new places for a few months, then Canada's unspoiled wilderness and urban splendor awaits you.

The Canadian Working Holiday program allows young adults from designated countries (we’ll list these countries a bit later) to travel and work in Canada for 12-24 months, moving from job to job throughout the country. The best thing about a Canada Working Holiday is that you can earn money to fund your travels during your stay in Canada.

So, if this is something you feel would benefit you, you've come to the right place. To enjoy a Canada working holiday, you must get a Canadian working holiday visa from International Experience Canada (IEC).

How does a Canada Working Holiday Work?

The IEC has a youth mobility agreement with 35 countries. This allows the citizens of the designated countries to visit Canada as an open work permit holder. A Canada open work permit allows foreign workers to work for whomever they choose over a certain period, provided the company is Canadian.

This visa program is specifically for young people who:

  • haven't settled on a career path yet
  • don't have a Canadian job offer
  • would like to fund their travels through the money they earn in their travel destination
  • would like to work for more than one Canadian employer
  • want to have the ability to travel around Canada while working

If this sounds like you, then a Working Holiday Visa Canada may be the perfect start for you. However, if you're unsure of whether or not having a working holiday in Canada is your best option, click the button below to talk to a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant who can help you find exactly which visa program is best for you.

Am I Eligible to Apply for a Canada Working Holiday Visa?

Working Holiday Visa in Canada (IEC 2023) | CanadianVisa (1)

As mentioned above, only citizens of countries with a youth mobility program can participate in the Canada Working Holiday Visa program. If you aren't from one of those countries, you can apply through an organization recognized by the government of Canada. However, these, too, are only available in certain countries.

(Video) Learn How to Live and Work in Canada with IEC 2023

The countries that are involved in Canada's youth mobility program are as follows:

Eligible Countries in the International Experience Canada (IEC) Program
ChileCosta RicaCroatia
Czech RepublicDenmarkEstonia
Hong KongIrelandItaly
JapanKorea, Rep.Latvia
NetherlandsNew ZealandNorway
PolandPortugalSan Marino
UkraineUnited Kingdom

If you aren't from any of these countries, you may have the opportunity to get a working holiday visa Canada via the following recognized organizations:

Registered OrganisationAge RangeEligible Countries
GO International18-35IEC countries, USA
A-Way to Work/International Rural Exchange Canada Inc.18-35IEC countries only
Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN)18-35IEC countries only
Stepwest18-35IEC countries only
SWAP Working Holidays18-35IEC countries, USA
AIESEC Canada 18-35IEC countries, Brazil, India
International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience (IAESTE)18-35IEC countries,& IAESTE country partners

If you're a citizen of one of the approved countries or can apply through one of the organizations, you also need to fulfil the following criteria to be eligible to apply for a Canada working holiday visa.

  • You must have a valid passport for one of the countries mentioned above that will not expire while you travel and work in Canada.
    • Your work permit will expire if your passport expires.
  • Depending on your program, you must be between 18 and 35 or 18 and 30 years.
    • This depends on your country of origin or recognized organization.
  • You need at least CA$2500 upon your arrival in Canada (As proof of and basis of financial support for yourself).
  • You must be admissible to Canada.
    • This means you must have no criminal record and be in good health.
    • You may need to provide documentation to prove this.
  • You have either booked and paid for a flight home or have sufficient funds for a flight home.
  • You must take out health insurance for the entire duration of the working holiday in Canada.
  • You can't have dependents.
  • You must live in the country you're a citizen of when you complete the Canada Working Holiday Visa application process.
  • Due to current travel restrictions, you must be fully vaccinated with a Canadian-approved vaccine.

If you can fulfill all of these criteria, you're eligible to apply for a Working Holiday Visa Canada

. Once you prove your eligibility, you can opt to have the RCIC represent you for your working holiday visa application process. If you’re unsure as to how an RCIC can help you, have a look at out RCIC introductory page. If you would like to have an expert handle this process for you to ensure the process is done as effectively and efficiently as possible, click the button below.

How to get Your IEC & Working Holiday Visa in 8 Steps:

Working Holiday Visa in Canada (IEC 2023) | CanadianVisa (2)

The IEC Working Holiday Visa application process is relatively straightforward and can be completed online from any country via the government of Canada's website.

Step 1: Create Your Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Account

There are two ways to register with the IRCC. You can either register with a GCKey or with a Sign-in Partner. A GCKey is a unique credential approved by a Canadian government-provided authentication service.

(Video) IEC 2023 BREAKING NEWS: How to live and work in Canada!

To Register with a GCKey, you must:

  1. Visit the Canadian Government Website
  2. Click "Register with a GCKey."
  3. Click "Sign Up."
  4. Read the Terms and Conditions of Use and select "I Accept."
  5. Create a username.
  6. Create a password.
  7. Create your security questions and answers.
  8. Once you have clicked "Continue," you will be taken to the Sign Up Complete page.
  9. Read the Terms and Conditions. Click I Accept.
  10. Create an account by entering your information and following the steps.

Sign-in Partners are financial institutions partnered SecureKey Technologies. SecureKey Technologies provides online identity services.

To register with a Sign-in Partner, you must:

  1. Visit the Canadian Government Website.
  2. Click "Register with a Partner" Sign-In.
  3. Choose your financial institution.
    1. If your financial institution is not listed, you must register with GCKey.
  4. Enter your banking sign-in information and click& Continue.
  5. Read the Terms and Conditions of Use and click I Accept.
  6. To create your account, enter your information and follow the steps.

Once you've created your account, select the "International Experience Canada" Option to open the Come to Canada questionnaire. Doing this process correctly is absolutely vital for the success of your application. If you want to ensure nothing gets left out, feel free to chat to an RCIC who can help you make sure you submit the best application possible.

Step 2: Fill out the Come to Canada Questionnaire

Your first step is to fill out the Come To Canada Questionnaire on the government of Canada's website. This form asks you basic questions such as your:

  • Nationality
  • Age
  • Language ability
  • Family members
  • Education
  • Student status (if applicable)
  • Work experience
  • Income and/or net worth
  • Details on any job offer

You will be advised on which programs and processes are best for you based on your answers to these questions. Once you complete the form, you will receive a personal reference code (it will look like this: JM1234567890).

Once you submit your profile, you will be entered into your chosen IEC pool. If your profile is eligible, the Canadian government will present you with an Invitation to Apply (ITA).

Step 3: Receive Your Invitation to Apply (ITA)

Working Holiday Visa in Canada (IEC 2023) | CanadianVisa (3)

The Canadian government will notify you via your account if you're invited to apply for the IEC. After that, you'll receive instructions on what to do next. Thereafter, you have twenty days to accept the invitation. Once you accept the invitation, you must apply for a work permit.

(Video) Cómo obtuve la Visa Working Holiday Canadá desde Chile (Documentos, Costos y Tiempo)

Step 4: Apply for a Work Permit

To get a work permit, you'll have to:

  • Show proof of the information you submitted in your IEC profile
  • Describe your educational background, employment history, and background
  • If necessary, provide other supporting documents

The documentation is as follows:

  • Police certificates
  • Medical exams
  • CV/resume
  • Passport
  • Digital photo
  • Family information
  • ETA orvisitor visa
  • Proof of financial support
  • Health insurance

You will also be asked to submit further information about your working background and the type of work you intend to do in Canada. Again, make sure all of the documents are readable and in color before submitting. Candidates are advised to submit all relevant supporting documents as failure in doing so will delay processing times.

Step 5: Pay Your Fees and Submit Your Profile

Once you've assembled all of your documentation, it's time to pay your fees. The IEC Working Holiday visa fees are as follows:

IEC Participation156
Canada Open Work Permit100

Once you submit your application, the Canadian government will contact you to verify that your information is valid, that you're eligible to work in Canada and that you're admissible to Canada.

Step 6: Do Your Biometrics

This is the one step you can't do online. However, you only have to give your biometrics once every ten years, so if you've travelled to Canada in the last ten years, you can skip this step. However, if you need to submit your biometrics, there are a few guidelines to help make the steps far easier.

  • Pay your biometrics fees when you initially submit your application, as it makes the process much faster.
  • You will receive a letter from the Canadian government telling you to get biometrics, after which you will have 30 days to do so.
  • You must give your biometrics in person at a visa office.

Step 7: Wait for Your IEC Work Permit Application to be Assessed

The Working Holiday Visa processing times take around 56 days and upwards. This process is the last possible time you can take back your application and get your money back, but at this point it can take a long time. If your application is incomplete, you may be asked to produce additional documents, which can elongate the process. Once your application has been assessed, the Canadian government will contact you.

(Video) Working Holiday Visa Application Canada - Part 1

The government will issue you a Port of Entry letter if you've been approved. If you haven't, they will send you a letter explaining why.

Step 8: Get To Canada

Working Holiday Visa in Canada (IEC 2023) | CanadianVisa (4)

Once you're approved, it's time to pack your things and get to Canada. Make sure you bring all of the documents given to you by Canada's government. This includes:

  • Your travel documents
  • Open work permit
  • ETA
  • Port of Entry Letter

The Canadian border authorities will check all these documents at your Canadian port of entry. You will be forced to return home if your documents are incomplete or invalid.


Can you Stay in Canada After Your Working Holiday Visa Expires?

Here's a handy guide to help you stay in Canada even when your working holiday has ended.

Is the IEC Currently Open?

Yes, however, the IEC does have an on and off-season. The season generally starts around March, but it depends entirely on your country of origin.

What Kind of Jobs can you do on a Working Holiday?

You can do a wide variety of jobs during your IEC working holiday. Here are a few examples of typical working holiday jobs. Moreover, there are jobs advertised by each Canadian province to meet the in-demand work needs of those provinces.

An Experience you Will Never Forget

Working Holiday Visa in Canada (IEC 2023) | CanadianVisa (5)

(Video) How to stay in Canada after your IEC Working Holiday Visa

With so many fantastic opportunities, choosing to travel and work in Canada via a Canada working holiday is not only more accessible than ever. However, it can bring a wealth of experience you won't find anywhere else. If you feel this is perfect for you, click the button below to talk to an RCIC to determine your eligibility and ensure your Working Holiday visa application process goes as smoothly as possible.


Is it easy to get a Working Holiday Visa for Canada? ›

The working holiday visa is relatively easy to obtain. As long as the applicant meets the minimum age requirement, can provide proof of citizenship and residence in their country of origin and does not have any medical or criminal issues causing inadmissibility, the applicant is eligible.

How long does it take to get IEC Working Holiday Visa? ›

It takes 56 days to process your application from the date you submit it. Processing will only start after you have submitted biometrics and will stop if we ask for any additional documents.

Are working holiday visas hard to get? ›

Another benefit of Working Holiday Schemes is that these visas are relatively easy to have approved, although they are generally only open to 18-30 years old. This is one travel opportunity you must take advantage of while you're young!

How much money do I need to enter Canada on a Working Holiday Visa? ›

To be allowed to enter Canada on a 24 month Working Holiday Visa you must show a proof of funds of CA$2,500 (CA$3,500 without a return flight).

How long does Canada IEC take? ›

The fee for your application is $250 and once this is submitted, the CIC will begin to process it. Beware that it can take up to 8 weeks for your application to be reviewed and for you to be issued with a POE (Point of Entry) Letter of Introduction.

How quickly can you get a Canadian work visa? ›

This may take up to 30 business days (6 weeks).

Do you need a job offer for IEC? ›

IEC Participation fee: CAD $161, Employer Compliance Fee (paid for by employer): $230. Must have a job offer for an employer in Canada. Duration: 12-24 months, depending on your nationality.

How long is IEC visa valid for? ›

For foreign travellers, the easiest way to secure your work permit is through the International Experience Canada (IEC) initiative, which allows you to live and work in Canada for up to two years.

How long does it take to be invited to apply for IEC visa? ›

How long will it take after I have created my profile to get an Invitation to apply? The Canadian Government (IEC) will offer places and this process can take up to 3-4 months. How long will the whole process take? Once fee has been paid the process should take between 6-8 weeks.

Do work visas get rejected? ›

Your visa may be rejected, if you have provided wrong information in your visa application form. If you have a past history of criminal activities against you. If you apply for a visa without a valid justification on a short notice.

Which country is hardest to get work visa? ›

China and Russia are considered the most challenging countries to get a work visa from India.

Which work visa is easiest to get? ›

China Work Visa Requirements

In many regards, China is one of the easiest places to obtain a work visa – so long as your employer is sponsoring you. With the support of a sponsoring employer, your work visa application is almost guaranteed to be accepted.

Do I need proof of funds for Canada work permit? ›

6.2 Proof of funds

To be eligible for a work permit, you must have enough money to meet the low income cut off (LICO) for your family size for 52 weeks. Make sure that you clearly show that you meet the minimum amount listed in the LICO table below.

How do I show proof of funds for Canada work permit? ›

You must present a statement of your bank account issued no more than 1 week before your departure for Canada. It must clearly show that you have enough money to support yourself for the first 3 months of your stay in Canada (the equivalent of CAN$2,500).

How much is IEC Working Holiday Visa? ›

You must pay the IEC fee. For the 2023 season, the IEC fee is CAN$161. If you need to give biometrics, you'll need to pay the biometric fee when you pay your IEC fee.

Can Americans apply for IEC Canada? ›

However, both U.S. citizens and permanent residents may apply to programs to move to Canada through one of the International Experience (IEC) programs, to either study or work. The process consists of applicants creating a candidate profile online, which is then entered in one or multiple programs or “pools”.

Can I travel to Canada while waiting for IEC? ›

If you want to stay in Canada while you wait for a decision on your new IEC participation, you must apply to extend your stay as a visitor before your work permit expires. You must stop working while you wait.

How many times can you apply for IEC? ›

You may be able to participate in International Experience Canada (IEC) more than once. It depends on the agreement between Canada and your country of citizenship. If you're allowed to participate a second time, you may have to wait a specific period of time before doing so.

How long does it take to get a Canadian holiday visa? ›

It can take anywhere between two to four weeks, or even longer. Your Canadian visa begins to process only after the Canadian authorities have received your complete application. If they need you to get them additional documents, the processing time will be delayed.

Is interview required for Canada visa? ›

When you arrive in Canada, you'll have to go through two screening interviews. If all your documents are available and in order, they should be over quickly.

Can I directly apply for work visa in Canada? ›

Normally, visitors can't apply for work permits from inside Canada. Due to a temporary policy change, visitors can apply online for an employer-specific work permit by following the steps below.

Can I apply for a Canadian work visa without a job offer? ›

No, in most cases you don't need a job offer. But, you will need one if you: are eligible for either the Federal Skilled Worker Program or the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and. do not have enough money to support yourself and your family in Canada.

Who qualifies for IEC? ›

Normally, you must be a Canadian or foreign youth aged 18 to 35. For some countries, the age limit is 18 to 29 or 30 years old. Find out if you're eligible to work and travel in Canada.

Do you need a job before Working Holiday Visa? ›

Working Holiday

You don't need a job offer to submit your profile.

Is IEC a Working Holiday Visa? ›

International Experience Canada (IEC) gives youth the opportunity to travel and work in Canada for up to 2 years. The type of work permit you get for Working Holiday is an open work permit. This lets you work for almost any employer in Canada (some exceptions apply).

Can I apply for work permit after IEC? ›

In a few cases, you can only apply for a second IEC work permit after one year has passed since the expiration of your first IEC work permit, but this rule only applies to applicants from Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Mexico, Poland, Slovakia, and Spain.

How do I become a permanent resident of Canada after IEC? ›

Apply directly for permanent resident status

Immigration for workers: If you have a decent amount of work experience, post-secondary education, and English or French language proficiency, then you might qualify for an 'economic immigration' pathway for workers, like Express Entry or a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).

What happens if you decline IEC invitation? ›

Declining an invitation to apply

If you decline an invitation, you'll stay in the IEC pool of candidates (as long as you are still eligible) to be considered in future rounds of invitations. If you choose to decline an invitation, it will not have a negative effect on future invitations.

How much does IEC cost? ›

The Government fees for Import export code(IEC License) registration is ₹500. The professional fees for IEC code Registration is ₹999. Hence, the Total cost of getting an IEC certificate will be ₹1499(₹500 + ₹999).

Can I enter Canada while waiting for my work visa? ›

Yes. However, a work permit isn't a travel document.

How can I avoid Canada visa refusal? ›

Provide sufficient financial proof

If you're applying through the general study permit stream, you can provide proof of financial support in the form of bank statements, proof of scholarship, education loan, etc. The more funds you show, the better the chances of your student visa getting approved.

Which country has the highest visa rejection rate? ›

Lowest Visa Refusal Rate
Schengen StateUniform visas appliedRefusal %
21 more rows
Feb 14, 2020

How can I avoid visa rejection? ›

Each country has rules when it comes to their visa application. Each applicant will need to adhere to these rules when applying. You must check the rules on the embassy website of the country you plan to travel to. You should avoid submitting fake documents, leading to visa rejection and other penalties.

Which country gives fastest work visa? ›

The 6 Countries Where it is Easy to Get a Work Visa
  • The Netherlands. The Netherlands is known for the work-life balance that it offers. ...
  • Germany. ...
  • Australia. ...
  • Singapore. ...
  • Canada. ...
  • New Zealand. ...
  • FAQs on Countries Where it is Easy to Get a Work Visa.

Which country visa is No 1? ›


Japan topped the index as the country with the most powerful in the world for the fifth consecutive year. As of 2023, Japanese passport holders can visit 193 of 227 destinations visa-free, which is 85% of the world, according to data from the International Air Transport Association compiled by Henley & Partners.

Which is the most powerful visa in the world? ›

Without COVID-19 travel restrictions and Ukrainian war–related visa changes in place, 2023's most powerful passports in the world are:
  • Japan, Singapore (193 destinations)
  • South Korea (192 destinations)
  • Germany, Spain (191 destinations)
  • Finland, Italy, Luxembourg (190 destinations)
Jan 24, 2023

Which country gives free citizenship? ›

Austria, Belgium, Ecuador, Belize and Costa Rica, countries where you can get citizenship and work visas easily of you have an Indian passport. Travel Tips, Immigration with Indian Passport: There are many countries in the world who give citizenship of their country if you have the passport of India and some documents.

Which visa is difficult to get? ›

North Korea

It's one of the most difficult countries to get access to and acquire a visa. One will need to apply for the visa through a tourist agency, which provides state-approved tours.

Where can Americans easily get a work visa? ›

Estonia is known for its high rate of accepted work visa applications, making it the easiest country to obtain a work visa. On the other hand, it receives a relatively small number of requests compared to other countries. Therefore, Estonia might be your best choice for working abroad.

How much bank balance is required for Canada? ›

Proof of funds is how you show us that you have enough money to settle in Canada. If we invite you to apply, you must give written proof that you have this money.
How much money you'll need.
Number of family membersFunds required (in Canadian dollars)
4 more rows
Jun 15, 2022

What if I don't have proof of funds Canada? ›

If you don't need to provide proof of funds, you must upload a letter explaining either that you have been invited to apply under the Canadian Experience Class, or that you have a valid job offer.

What is acceptable proof of funds? ›

A bank statement, security statement, or custody statement usually qualify as proof of funds. Proof of funds is typically required for a large transaction, such as the purchase of a house.

Is bank statement enough for proof of funds Canada? ›

CIC does not require you to show a six months balance. You only need to show the currently available balance in your account (e.g. using a bank statement or a bank certificate). However, further down the line your local Visa Office will most probably request you to submit bank statements for the past 4-6 months.

Do you need bank statement for work visa? ›

A common visa requirement is a Bank Statement or a Bank Certificate. The main goal of having a bank account is for the embassy to know that you have enough funds to travel to their country.

Does Canada immigration check bank accounts? ›

The Embassy does not check bank statement in case of every applicant. It is done on random basis or in case of doubt.

How hard is it to get a Working Holiday Visa? ›

Eligibility requirements for US citizens:

Must be aged 18-30. Must have valid US passport. Must be a citizen and permanent residence of the country named on your visa. Must have proof of sufficient funds to live on during your stay ($2,900 USD)

Can Americans get Working Holiday Visa in Canada? ›

The Canada Working Holiday Visa is one of many work permits that Canada offers U.S. citizens and other foreign nationals.

What are the conditions for Working Holiday Visa in Canada? ›

Be between the ages of 18 and 30 or 35 (inclusive) at the time of application. The upper age limit depends on the applicant's country of citizenship, as outlined in our International Experience Canada country list. Have the equivalent of at least CAD$2,500 on landing to help cover initial expenses.

Is it hard to go to Canada for work? ›

While finding a job in Canada is not easy, it is possible! Below we have laid out the steps you need to follow to make the most of your Canadian job search. A job offer from a Canadian employer can significantly increase your chance of receiving an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

Can U.S. citizens apply for IEC? ›

American citizens and U.S. permanent residents may apply to IEC through eligible recognized organizations.

Can U.S. citizens apply for Canada work permit? ›

Eligibility requirements if you apply from outside Canada

Anyone can apply before they enter Canada. However, there may be visa office requirements that you need to meet depending on what country or territory you're applying from. Make sure you follow the instructions for how to apply.

Do I need a job offer for a Working Holiday Visa? ›

Working Holiday

You don't need a job offer to submit your profile.

What is the difference between a Working Holiday Visa and a work and holiday visa? ›

The Work and Holiday (subclass 462) visa has certain educational requirements, while the Working Holiday (subclass 417) visa does not have education requirements. The minimum education required depends on the country of passport.


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