Here's how you can save money as you settle in.👇
Moving countries can be scary and if you're a newcomer to Canada, you'll probably know just how hard it is to start from scratch.
From looking for jobs and adjusting to the weather, to learning a new language and making new friends, there's a whole list of things you may just have to figure out – and that can be hard on anyone.
To help you out, the government, as well as some private organizations, actually have a lot of benefits for those moving to Canada.
So, if you've just landed, try not to get overwhelmed! Here's where you can go if you need help settling in:
If you've arrived in the country as a permanent resident, the government has loads of useful settlement services that you can make use of.
These organizations sometimes play multiple roles and can guide newcomers on everything from finding the right place to live, to community events near you.
To figure this one out, simply scan through the list of free settlement services online and find one near you that offers the services you're looking for.
There are some agencies that are quite specific (for example, women only or youth only) so pick the one that meets your needs best.
One of the most important things for many newcomers to Canada is finding a job. More specifically, finding a job that is in the right field or industry.
Fortunately, there are loads of agencies that exist to help newcomers in Canada find jobs, as long as you are eligible to work in the country.
Acces Employment is one such example where you can sign up and get a guide, and have workshops on interviews and creating a resume. It also ties up with organizations that are hiring, and offers job fairs.
Apart from that, you can search for similar organizations depending on where you live.
Not feeling like you're ready to work just yet? The Federal Internship for Newcomers program (FIN) can help you gain temporary experience and training.
You could also try Career Edge which connects newcomers to employers for paid internships so that they can earn while getting valuable Canadian experience.
Knowing how to understand English and/or French is extremely helpful if you live in Canada, especially if you're planning to enter the workforce.
If you're fluent in one and want to learn the other – or just want to generally brush up on your existing language skills – there are plenty of free classes you can take.
Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) is a great resource for those wanting help with these languages.
To enroll, you can get a formal language assessment at an organization that helps newcomers, and then register for the class.
These classes have flexible schedules, can be done full-time or part-time and, in some places, also offer services to take care of children so that you can attend.
Banks with newcomer programs
One of the things that might take newcomers by surprise when they move to Canada is that big banks actually charge you for opening a day-to-day account.
This fee is usually not very high, and it's waived off if you have above a certain limit in your accounts.
However, here's where being a newbie comes in handy. All of the big five banks in Canada – RBC, TD, BMO, CIBC and Scotiabank – offer newcomer promotions of some kind.
For example, several offer accounts with fees waived for a set period of time – usually six months to a year.
And, since you also need to start building your credit score, these programs are a great way to open your first credit card.
Okay so this isn't technically free but there are brands that give newcomers to Canada discounts too.
This includes companies like Uber and HelloFresh that offer discounts for first time users in Canada.
Moreover, brands such as Adidas and H&M have reductions for those who sign up for their membership programs for the first time.
Finally, what's better than exploring your new country?
To help newcomers better explore their new home, Canoo – an app backed by the Institute for Canadian Citizenship – allows those new to Canada to visit over 1,400 destinations across the country for free.
This includes national parks, historic sites, science centres, museums, art galleries and more.
According to the app's website, it's open to "any Canadian who received their citizenship within the last 12 months (365 days), or permanent resident within the first 5 years of receiving permanent residence status."
That's not a bad deal at all. Get out there and get exploring, newbies!
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.