Welcome to this comprehensive introduction to the Canadian Working Holiday permit! If you’ve heard about the Working Holiday permit but you’re not sure how it works or if you want to apply and need an overview of the whole process, then this guide is for you. The next few chapters will take you through:

  • The pros and cons of a Working Holiday permit
  • Eligibility requirements and application fees
  • The quota system, the selection process and the application period
  • The nine steps of a Canadian Working Holiday application
  • The documents required during the application process

The Working Holiday permit to Canada is offered through International Experience Canada (IEC), a program developed by the Government of Canada to encourage youth mobility between Canada and its partner countries.

What’s so special about the Working Holiday permit?

You can work legally in Canada

Your Working Holiday permit is a document issued by the Government of Canada that authorises you to stay in Canada for a maximum of 12 or 24 months, depending on your country of citizenship. With a Working Holiday permit, you can explore Canada and work during your stay.

You don’t need to find a job before you leave

You don’t need to have a job offer in Canada before applying for your Working Holiday. Some applicants do start contacting potential employers from abroad, but this is not a requirement.

You can work for any employer in Canada

Your Working Holiday permit is an open work permit, which means you can work for any employer in any location during the validity period of your permit.

You can work anywhere in Canada

Feel free to explore Canada from coast to coast! You don’t have to stay in a specific city, province or territory—you can start in British Columbia and eventually end up in Quebec after a visit to Manitoba and a trip to Yukon. Once you land in Canada with your Working Holiday permit, you’re free to roam around as much as you want.

You can work with the same employer for up to 12 or 24 months

If you find your dream job, you can work for the same employer for the entire duration of your Working Holiday.

You aren’t required to work

If you have enough funds to support yourself during your stay in Canada, you don’t have to find a job. Working isn’t a legal requirement but an option—you can work but you don’t have to. Feel free to spend your time travelling around Canada! You can even volunteer if you’re looking for a different kind of work experience.

Note: If you want to complete an internship (paid or unpaid) related to your field of study in Canada, you should apply for an International Co-op Internship work permit instead of a Working Holiday permit.

Your spouse, partner or friend could come IF they apply for their own Working Holiday permit

Your spouse, partner or friend won’t automatically get a work permit to come to Canada with you. Each individual has to meet eligibility requirements and submit an application for an IEC permit. Even children must obtain their own visitor status or a study permit.

For more information, see Working Holiday permit to Canada: Travelling as a couple and/or with kids.

You don’t have to meet specific work experience or education requirements

Your application won’t be assessed or ranked based on your work experience, language skills, education or cover letter. Any applicant who meets the basic eligibility requirements listed in chapter 3 of this guide can become a candidate and may receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA).

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L'équipe de pvtistes.net vous informe depuis 2005 sur tous les aspects d'un PVT et vous accompagne dans vos projets de mobilité à l'international !

The pvtistes.net team has been around since 2005, guiding thousands of young adults through all aspects of their working holiday!

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