Immigrate to Australia from Canada

November 17, 2023
Myer Lipschitz

Process and Requirements

Immigrating to Australia from Canada involves several steps and requirements. The following is the process for work visas specifically, although not all visas will require these steps.

  1. Determine Your Eligibility: First, check if you’re eligible to immigrate to Australia. There are various visa categories such as skilled migration, family sponsorship, student visas, and more. Each category has specific criteria you must meet.
  2. Select the Right Visa: Based on your situation, choose a visa that suits your needs. For example, if you have skills in demand in Australia, you might go for a skilled worker visa. If you’re planning to study there, a student visa would be appropriate.
  3. Gather Necessary Documents: This step involves collecting all required documents like your passport, educational certificates, work experience records, etc. Make sure they are up to date and translated into English, if necessary.
  4. English Language Proficiency: Australia often requires proof of English proficiency, typically through tests like IELTS or TOEFL, even for English-speaking Canadians, depending on the visa type.
  5. Skill Assessment (if needed): For skilled migration visas, you may need to have your qualifications and skills assessed by an Australian authority relevant to your occupation.
  6. Expression of Interest (EOI): For many visas, you’ll need to submit an EOI through the SkillSelect online system. It’s like an online resume that details your skills and qualifications.
  7. Receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA): If your EOI is successful, you’ll be invited to formally apply for a visa.
  8. Health and Character Assessments: You’ll likely need to undergo health checks and provide a police clearance certificate to prove you have good character.
  9. Submit Visa Application: Once you have everything in order, submit your visa application along with the required documents and fees. Ensure everything is accurate to avoid delays.
  10. Wait for Decision: Processing times vary based on the visa type. Be patient during this period, and respond promptly if the authorities ask for more information.

Exploring Visa and Citizenship Options

When looking to immigrate to Australia from Canada, there are several visa and citizenship options available, ranging from temporary visas for work or study, to more permanent options. This section will cover three main types of visas: Skilled Migration and Work Visas, Student Visas, and Parent Visas.

Skilled Migration and Work Visas

Australia offers a variety of skilled migration and work visa options for those wishing to work in the country. Some popular visa options include the Skilled Independent Visa, which allows highly skilled workers to live and work in Australia without sponsorship, and the Employer Nomination Scheme Visa, designed for skilled individuals who have been nominated by an Australian employer.

To apply for these visas, the applicant’s occupation should be listed on the Skilled Occupation List. In some cases, a skills assessment may be required to determine if the applicant’s skills match those needed in the Australian labor market.

  • Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189): For skilled workers who are not sponsored.
  • Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186): For skilled workers nominated by an Australian employer.

Student Visas

For those looking to study in Australia, a Student Visa is required. This type of visa allows individuals to study at an Australian educational institution for the duration of their course. To be eligible for a student visa, applicants must be enrolled in a full-time course and provide evidence of their financial capacity to cover tuition fees, living costs, and travel expenses.

  • Student Visa (subclass 500): For studying in an Australian educational institution.

Parent Visas

If you are a parent of an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen, you may be eligible for a Parent Visa. This visa allows parents to join their children in Australia, either temporarily or permanently. The application process for parent visas can be complex and lengthy, so it is essential to understand the requirements and follow the steps as outlined by the Australian Department of Home Affairs.

  • Parent Visa (Subclass 103): This is a permanent visa for parents living outside Australia. To be eligible, the parent must have a child who is an Australian citizen, a permanent resident, or an eligible New Zealand citizen. This visa has a lengthy processing time and applicants must meet the balance-of-family test, which means at least half of their children must live permanently in Australia.
  • Contributory Parent Visa (Subclass 143): This is also a permanent visa but with a significantly higher application fee compared to the Subclass 103 visa. The processing time is generally shorter. Applicants must meet the same balance-of-family test. There’s also a temporary counterpart to this visa (Subclass 173), which provides a two-stage pathway to permanent residency.
  • Aged Parent Visa (Subclass 804): This is for older parents living in Australia who wish to stay permanently. Applicants must be old enough to receive the Australian age pension and must meet the balance-of-family test. Like the Subclass 103 visa, the processing time can be quite long.
  • Contributory Aged Parent Visa (Subclass 864): Similar to the Subclass 143, this visa is for older parents who are already in Australia. It offers a faster processing time in exchange for higher fees. Applicants must be of Australian pension age and meet the balance-of-family test.
  • Sponsored Parent (Temporary) Visa (Subclass 870): Introduced in recent years, this visa allows parents to stay in Australia for a continuous period of up to five years. It doesn’t lead to permanent residency but can be renewed to allow a stay of up to 10 years in total. The applicant’s child must act as a sponsor and meet certain income requirements.

In addition to the visa options mentioned above, individuals may also consider other visas such as the Visitor Visa, Partner Visa, and Dependent Child Visa, depending on their personal circumstances and goals. It is essential to research your options and consult with immigration professionals to ensure you select the most suitable visa for your needs.

Living in Australia

Life Quality and Living Costs

Living in Australia offers a high quality of life, with its diverse culture, excellent healthcare system, and a thriving job market. The cost of living, however, varies depending on the city. Major cities like Sydney and Melbourne tend to have higher living costs compared to smaller cities such as Adelaide, Brisbane, and Perth.

Australia has a universal healthcare system called Medicare, which covers most basic medical needs for citizens and permanent residents. However, it’s strongly recommended for immigrants to have private health insurance to cover additional expenses not covered by Medicare.

The cost of living in Australia, while generally higher than in Canada, is manageable. Here’s a brief comparison of living costs in major cities:

CityCost of Living Index

Main Cities

  • Sydney: Known for its iconic Opera House and Harbour Bridge, Sydney is Australia’s largest and most famous city. It ranks high among the most liveable cities in the world, offering residents a fantastic lifestyle, bustling nightlife, and extensive job opportunities.
  • Melbourne: Melbourne is famous for its art, fashion, and coffee culture. It has held the title of the world’s most liveable city multiple times, with its diverse population, vibrant art scene, and exceptional education institutions.
  • Adelaide: Known as the “City of Churches,” Adelaide offers an affordable cost of living, excellent healthcare, and a high quality of life. It’s a perfect option for families who seek a more relaxed and peaceful lifestyle.
  • Brisbane: As the capital of Queensland, Brisbane features a warm climate, beautiful beaches, and a thriving arts scene. With its lower cost of living compared to Sydney and Melbourne, it’s an attractive option for many immigrants, particularly those in the creative sector.
  • Perth: Lying on the west coast of Australia, Perth is famous for its beautiful coastline and mining industry. It offers immigrants a laid-back lifestyle and lower living costs compared to major cities on the east coast.

Working in Australia

Job Opportunities and Economy

Australia’s economy offers a diverse range of job opportunities across various sectors, reflecting its dynamic and robust economic landscape. As one of the most developed countries, Australia boasts a strong presence in industries such as mining, agriculture, and education, with a growing emphasis on technology and renewable energy.

The nation’s strategic location in the Asia-Pacific region also enhances its trade prospects, fostering opportunities in export-driven sectors. Australia’s commitment to innovation and a skilled workforce is evident in its thriving start-up culture and substantial investments in research and development. The country’s economic policies are geared towards sustainability and inclusivity, aiming to create a resilient and adaptive job market. Moreover, Australia’s high standard of living, combined with its emphasis on work-life balance, makes it an attractive destination for professionals seeking both career growth and quality of life.

Specific Considerations for Canadians

Australia’s climate is significantly different from Canada’s. While Canada is known for its cold winters and moderate summers, Australia generally has a warmer climate. The northern regions experience tropical weather, with wet and dry seasons, while the southern regions have more temperate climates with distinct seasons. Canadians moving to Australia should be prepared for hotter summers and milder winters, especially in areas like Queensland and the Northern Territory.

In Australia, unlike in Canada, driving is on the left side of the road. This can be a major adjustment for Canadians. It’s not just the side of the road that’s different, but also the driver’s seat position in the car, the direction of roundabouts, and various road rules.

For detailed guidance on immigrating to Australia from other locations, please refer to our other guides: Hong Kong, Israel, Canada, USA, New Zealand, UK, Singapore, South Africa.

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