Immigrating to British Columbia is a dream come true for many. From its scenic landscapes and landscapes to its bustling cities, British Columbia has much to offer newcomers.
There were nearly 45,000 newcomers to British Columbia last year. If you are interested in joining them, read on for 4 ways to move to BC.
1. Express Entry
Besides managing applications for three economic programs online, Express Entry is also the fastest and most popular way to immigrate to British Columbia.
Express Entry manages the Federal Skilled Worker program, which doesn’t require previous experience in Alberta or Canada.
Using the CRS scoring system, the Federal Skilled Worker program ranks candidates based on their CRS scores. Candidates’ CRS scores are based on their age, education, language proficiency, and employment experience.
The Canadian government holds Express Entry draws each year, inviting the most competitive candidates to immigrate to Canada. Approximately 83,000 Federal Skilled Workers are expected to move to Canada in 2023, an increase from previous years.
With Express Entry, immigrants can also include their spouse, common-law partner, and dependent children.
2. British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP)
BC PNP is a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) that allows British Columbia to nominate individuals for permanent residence in Canada.
Each stream of the BC PNP has its own eligibility criteria and application process.
For example, if you’d like to come to BC to work in the tech field, you can apply through the BC PNP Tech stream. Since it was created in 2017, more than 6,000 tech workers have been nominated for permanent residency under this stream. Technology workers are given priority in draws for the BC PNP Tech stream.
The BC Skills Immigration Stream is ideal for skilled workers located outside of Canada. It consists of several categories, such as BC Skilled Workers, BC Health Care Professionals, BC International Graduates, BC International Post-Graduate, and BC Entry-Level and Semi-Skilled Workers. All these streams usually require the applicant to have a job offer from a Canadian employer; however, it does not need to be backed by an LMIA.
In order to apply for BC Skills Immigration, you must register through BC PNP Online, the web portal that manages the Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS).
Entering the pool of candidates will give you the opportunity to receive an invitation if you meet the requirements for one of these streams.
3. Study in British Columbia
Post-secondary studies in Canada can improve your chances of immigration to British Columbia. Candidates who complete a post-secondary credential in Canada have a higher chance of receiving an invitation to apply for nomination through the Express Entry stream.
Having a Canadian education credential can also increase your chances of being selected for Express Entry.
Graduates of Canadian post-secondary programs are eligible to apply for a Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP). The PGWP allows international graduates to work for any employer for up to three years. Having Canadian work experience is a huge advantage when applying for permanent immigration, making Express Entry’s Canadian Experience Class (CEC) more competitive.
In British Columbia, there are many prestigious universities, many of which rank among the top ten in the country.
Studying in British Columbia is a great way to continue your education while improving your chances of getting a Canadian visa.
4. Work in British Columbia
You can improve your chances of being able to immigrate to British Columbia by gaining Canadian work experience.
For those who want to work in British Columbia, there are a few options for obtaining a Canadian work permit.
A work permit can be applied for by you if you are offered a specialized position by a British Columbian employer. An employer must first obtain a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), indicating that they were unable to find a Canadian citizen or permanent resident to fill the position in order to be eligible. An LMIA may not even be needed or may be easier to obtain depending on your work experience or country of citizenship.
The second option is to transfer to a Canadian office if your employer has an office in Canada. Intra-company transfers are sometimes exempt from requiring an LMIA, which makes it easier to get a Canadian work permit.
Are you interested in immigrating to British Columbia but aren’t sure what option is right for you? Start by completing our free online assessment form. We will examine your eligibility and get back to you with a recommendation!