Get a medical checkup
Checkup and prescriptions
If you have a prescription for an ongoing condition and will travel with medications, ask your doctor to give you the name of equivalent drugs to have your prescription filled in Canada, and get a prescription covering the duration of your stay. Note that IEC travel health insurance plans don’t usually cover pre-existing conditions.
You can often get a 12-month prescription for birth control.
You also need a current, valid prescription to buy contact lenses. If you don’t have one, you’ll need to take a vision test (and fees apply!). Note that visits to the optometrist or other eye care providers aren’t covered by your travel insurance in this case because vision care is a “pre-existing condition.”
It’s also a good idea to have a dental checkup before leaving. Dental care is expensive and generally not fully covered by travel insurance policies.
Basically, make an appointment with every health provider you see regularly at home to cover your bases before your trip abroad.
No specific vaccine is required or recommended for Canada. However, you may want to make sure you did get your tetanus and diphtheria booster shots (usually every ten years for adults). If you plan to travel outside Canada, check if you need specific vaccines.
Find out if your responsibilities as a citizen abroad
For long absences, you may have to notify the following agencies, if applicable:
- Social security (or equivalent)
- Employment services (especially if you get benefits)
- Tax services
You have rights and duties as a citizen and you may have to notify several agencies that you will be abroad for an extended period of time.
Consider getting an International Driving Permit
If you’re going to stay in Canada for a long period of time (i.e. several months and more), it’s best to get an International Driving Permit, especially if your own driver’s licence isn’t in English or French.
Don’t forget your original licence, you still have to carry it with your International Driving Permit!
Main articles about the WHV to Canada
Step-By-Step Guide to International Experience Canada Work Permits
Introduction to the Canada Working Holiday permit
Guide to Working Holiday in Canada (free download)
16 Good Reasons to Apply for a Working Holiday Visa
Globe WHV insurance policy highlights
The duration of your insurance coverage directly impacts your WHV
15 Tips for a Successful WHV Experience
The Working Holiday Visa Adventure as a Solo Traveller