Working while studying in Canada is one of the main advantages of choosing Canada as your study destination, but here are a few things you need to know before you start earning.
Most international students in Canada can work for as much as 20 hours per week, and full-time during scheduled breaks, without a work permit. Working while studying will assist you to support yourself and make new friends, all while building the connections and experience that could make you stand out in your job hunt later on.
Prior to starting looking for your dream student job, read on to find out about working in Canada as an international student.
Working while studying in Canada: Eligibility
International students in Canada with a study permit who are enrolled full-time in a Designated Learning Institution (DLI), can work off-campus without a work permit. This means you can work for any employer in any occupation anywhere in Canada. International students can also work on campus if they wish.
Working off-campus means working for any employer beyond the university or college. Working on campus means working for any employer on the university or college’s campus, such as working for the college itself, for a faculty member (as a research assistant, for example), for yourself (self-employed, working on campus), for a student organization, or for a private contractor providing services on campus, such as a gym or restaurant.
It is very important to note that although you may plan to work while studying in Canada, you will always need to demonstrate sufficient financial resources when you apply for a study permit. This means you have to inform you can pay to support yourself during your studies without working. Anticipated future earnings will not suffice when demonstrating sufficient financial resources, so because you may plan to be working while studying in Canada will not satisfy the condition to prove financial capacity before arrival.
Your study permit will state you may be permitted to work in Canada and the conditions of employment. This statement lets you apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN) from Service Canada; obtaining a SIN is a key requirement before you start working while studying in Canada.
If your study permit is missing the statement you need to be able to apply for a SIN, you will get your study permit amended for free. While you can do this after you arrive, it’s much simpler to perform this when you land and your study permit is first issued. When you turn up at Immigration, you can ask the officer about your permission to work if you’re unsure about anything on your study permit.
You cannot work in Canada unless otherwise authorized to do this if your study program is less than six months in duration, or if you’re enrolled in English as a Second Language (ESL) or French as a Second Language (FSL) program. Additionally, visiting or exchange students at a DLI are not permitted to work while studying in Canada.
It is advisable to remember that you cannot start working while studying in Canada until you start your study program.