Immigrating to another country can be an overwhelming and terrifying endeavour. You are relocating to a new land with a different language and culture, unique from your own.
After a few years of dealing with attorneys, filling in extensive paperwork, going through the interview process and paying an exorbitant amount of money, you have finally immigrated to Canada. So, first off, congratulations – we hope you will be happy in the Great White North.
For the tens of thousands that immigrate to Canada, it can be hard at first. However, with the right game plan, you can integrate into society without any significant hiccups. Before you know it, you’ll be a Canadian who loves poutine, hockey and Tim Hortons coffee.
Here are five tips to successfully integrate in Canada when you immigrate:
1. Know the Language Beforehand
Once you and your family have decided to immigrate to Canada, you should immediately begin to learn the language before you arrive at the border. This will make life easier for you.
Canada has two official languages: English and French.
Although the Canadian government is accommodative to dozens of different languages, it is still important to speak, write and understand English and/or French.
2. Be Sure You Have Family Support
Life in a new country can be stressful at first, especially if you don’t have anybody to lean on for a short period of time. That said, if you know at least one other person in Canada, it would be a good idea to engage with them.
By having support from family or friends, you can learn a lot, reveal your fears and garner assistance should something go awry.
3. Seek Out Community Activities
Now that you’re in Canada, it is up to you to explore this wonderful land. You don’t necessarily have to participate in a cross-country tour – though, who wouldn’t love to? But you should try to take in all the sights and sounds your city has to offer, whether it is partaking in community activities or simply touring the entire city: north and south, east and west.
4. Ensure You Have the Money to Settle
Similar to communicating in the native language before you arrive, you should also ensure you have the money to settle in Canada. It is expensive to live in a place like Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa or Vancouver, and you wouldn’t want to rely on social assistance almost immediately.
As you prepare to leave your homeland for greener pastures, it would be a prudent idea to start saving your money to help you get by. This should certainly include money for first and last month’s rent, groceries, transportation and an emergency fund.
5. Keep in Touch with Your Immigration Lawyer
Once you immigrate to Canada, the process will not be completed. There are still plenty of steps to take once you step foot on Canadian soil. This is why you must stay in touch with your immigration lawyer at all times to receive updates, news and what else needs to be done.
By doing this, you give yourself peace of mind and you won’t need to worry about anything. Like all other types of bureaucracy, there are always hurdles to overcome in immigration.
You have gone through the rigorous process. You have answered hundreds of questions. You have waited a long time for this day to come. But you are now in Canada.
It is indeed a worthwhile investment to come to Canada. That said, you don’t want that investment to go to waste by not taking full advantage of your new home. There is so much to do and see: iconic buildings to visit, people to meet, foods to imbibe and activities to participate in.
Canada is huge. Be sure you take it in all in.