As Canada’s immigration website crashes, here’s info you need and other country options


Canada’s national immigration services have experienced several site crashes in the early hours of November 9, 2016 with the realization that Donald Trump was likely to win the presidential election, all but sealed as of this writing upon winning Pennsylvania. Will Americans actually follow through this time, though?

While “I’m moving to Canada” has always been a running joke from the losing side in an American election, but this year since spiking in March when it first became apparent that Trump would win the Republican nomination, searches have been higher than they were at an other point in the previous 11.5 years.

Interest in moving to Canada according to Google Trends has climbed massively in 2016 (screenshot, Google Trends)
Interest in moving to Canada according to Google Trends has climbed massively in 2016 (screenshot, Google Trends)


In 2013, most new immigrants came from China (33,908), India (30,576), and the Philippines (28,943). The US placed 5th with 9,414, just after Pakistan. Whether or not those numbers change is not immediately clear, as immigration has been a hotly debated topic in Canada in 2016. However, Canada and its individual provinces have been opening up special skilled worker visa programs and the country is still keen to get talented students. Venture capital would also be extremely welcome.

Anyone looking for basic immigration information can find it here, as well as a list of websites for several other immigration services to English-speaking countries around the world.

Moving to Canada: the basics

You need to accumulate a certain number of points to qualify to immigrate. Here’s how to do it. For an even better among of information, read out article from March about moving to Canada to work for tech startups.

1. Skilled work experience (15 points)

You can get 15 points here, but need at least nine. Canada requires at least 1,560 hours of relevant work experience within two years to qualify. That’s only 30 hours a week (full-time) for a year or 15 a week (part-time) for two. The work must be consecutive. That work experience must have been within the previous 10 years.

2. Language (28 points)

Your English or French skills need to be up to par to reach Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 (requirements in English or French) in one of those languages (24 points).

3. Education accreditation (25 points)

Education-wise, even the Great White North has bureaucracy. You need an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) for your high school diploma and college degrees. This is common in a lot of countries. American degrees will virtually always be approved (except from Trump University, of course).

4. Your age (12 points)

If you’re between 18 and 35, you get 12 points. Every year older loses you a point until you turn 47 when you get zero toward your score.

5. Adaptability (10 points max)

You can grab 10 points pretty easily here by having a year of previous work in Canada (0, A or B skill sets). You can also pick up 5 points for each of these: language skills at CNB 4, a single relative in the country, previous work experience in Canada, previous school experience in Canada or the previous school/experience of your spouse/common law partner.

6. Job offer (10 points)

The availability of jobs in your field might be an issue though, especially if there is low demand. Canada keeps track of this information, so check out the Job Bank.

Canadian province immigration policies and Canada alternatives

All of Canada’s provinces also retain their own degree of autonomy with immigration policy, especially Quebec. With that in mind, you can get a lot of information from those provinces’ own websites about immigrating.

Quebec (Montreal)

Main Quebec Immigration Website

Quebec Skilled Worker Immigration

Quebec High Demand Occupation List

Ontario (Toronto, Ottawa, Waterloo-Kitchener-Cambridge triangle)

Ontario’s special Entrepreneur Stream Guide

British Columbia (Vancouver)

General British Columbia immigration site

British Columbia skilled worker program

Nova Scotia (Halifax)

Nova Scotia immigration information

Australia, UK, New Zealand, Ireland, and South Africa

If Canada seems too cold (or you still can’t log on to their website to get basic info), here are some links to the basic immigration services websites:

Australia Skilled Worker Visa (subclass 189)

New Zealand Immigration and Visas

UK visas and immigration

Irish immigration and naturalization services

South Africa immigration services


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