The International Experience Canada (IEC) is an exciting opportunity for young individuals, ages 18-35, to obtain a Canada work permit and gain international work experience. Any country that has a Youth Mobility Agreement with Canada is basically eligible to apply for Canada Working Holiday Visa and come to Canada for a period of 12-24 months (depending on the agreement).
Canada Working Holiday Visa provides a window of opportunities for young adults to enjoy a time of leisure, explore academic possibilities, and pursue work opportunities that may lead to future careers.
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Italy and Canada Working Holiday Visa Agreement
On December 11th, Marco E. L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (IRC), and Luigi Di Maio, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and International Cooperation of the Italian Republic, signed a new Youth Mobility Agreement, which now enables Italy’s youth to obtain this Canada work permit and live, work and travel in Canada for a longer period of time.
The old agreement was signed 14 years ago in 2006 and stated that young adults in Italy will be allowed to live and work in Canada for up to 12 months – without the possibility of extending their Working Holiday Visa. Now, the new agreement allows them to extend their stay for 2 whole years, which in turn allows them to gain more work experience or take more time for traveling and leisure.
Even though Canada and Italy already had a Youth Mobility Agreement, expanding it is particularly good news for Italy, considering the rough year they have been going through ever since Covid-19 broke out. Any young individuals in need of an extra income, in pursuit of an adventure, or even exploring academic opportunities will now be able to extend their stay according to their needs.
This agreement goes both ways, as Canadian youth will also be able to travel to Italy for up to 24 months.
Additionally, Italian youth will have 2 other options rather than Canada Working Holiday Visa to gain valuable work experience through these streams: International Co-op and Young Professionals.
IEC International Co-op and Young Professionals – Working Holiday Visa Alternatives
The IEC International Co-op is designed for students who would like to gain professional work experience in their field of study. IEC International Co-op candidates will need a valid job offer in Canada before their arrival; eligible applicants will need to work for the same employer, in the same location, for their entire stay in Canada.
The main benefit of the IEC International Co-op, when compared to Canada Working Holiday Visa, is that the quota for this work permit does not normally exceed supply as quickly as the Working Holiday Visa, so your chances of obtaining this work permit are much higher.
The Young Professionals program offers the opportunity to participate in YP and IEC related activities, meet international technical experts, be involved in the strategic planning and implementation of creative ideas concerning the IEC and YP, and more. The IEC highly benefits from the increased participation of young experts.
Participants of the Young Professionals program are hand-picked by IEC National Committees to represent their countries in the program.
If you are an engineer, manager, or technician involved in the fields of electricity and electronics – you might have the opportunity to join the Young Professionals program. You will be able to take advantage of an important networking platform and help shape the YP and IEC activities.
Who Else Can Apply for Canada Working Holiday Visa?
Italy is not the first country to have a Youth Mobility Agreement with Canada. In fact, over 30 countries participate in International Experience Canada and are eligible for Canada Working Holiday Visa. You can find the list of eligible countries here.
The eligibility criteria for Canada Working Holiday Visa are quite simple and straightforward:
You must be 18-30 years old (or 35 for some nationalities)
You must be a citizen of one of the countries with the Youth Mobility Agreement with Canada
You must have a valid passport
You must have enough savings to sustain your stay
You mustn’t have any dependents
If you marked “check!” on the entire eligibility criteria – then you might be able to apply for Canada’s Working Holiday Visa. Alternatively, you might be eligible to apply for the IEC International Co-op or Young Professionals program.
Whether you choose to apply for Canada’s Working Holiday Visa or one of the other 2 programs, make sure to apply as early as possible before quotas are full.
Not Eligible for Any of These Programs? Try Express Entry Canada
Does it seem that you can’t meet the eligibility criteria for Canada Working Holiday Visa? Or perhaps, you feel like this program is just not for you? You have another option to come work in Canada – Express Entry Canada.
The Express Entry Canada is basically the skilled worker selection system for three different work visas: Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), and Canadian Experience Class (not to be confused with International Experience Canada!).
The Federal Skilled Worker Program and the Federal Skilled Trades Program are for skilled workers with a particular set of academic and professional skills and/or experience who want to work in Canada. These visas have a pathway to permanent residency. The Canadian Experience Class is for temporary workers already residing in Canada who are also interested in becoming Canadian permanent residents. Read more about these visas here.
The eligibility criteria for Express Entry Canada is based on six selection factors: work experience, academic achievements, language proficiency, age, job offer, and sponsorship. Once you meet the main eligibility criteria, you will need to meet visa-specific requirements and finally submit your visa application. While this process may take longer than applying for Canada’s Working Holiday Visa, it is still considered the “express” and more direct way of starting a professional path in Canada.
The Application Process for Canada’s Working Holiday Visa and Express Entry Canada
Both programs provide a wide range of opportunities to start a new life in Canada, develop your career, and enjoy new adventures.
The application process for Canada’s Working Holiday Visa requires you to meet the eligibility criteria, complete, and submit your visa application. Canada’s immigration authorities have regular draws for Working Holiday Visa candidates, so be sure to stay updated on when the next draw takes place.
We would like to emphasize the importance of applying as early as possible due to this program’s popularity.
The application process for Express Entry Canada requires you to meet the main eligibility criteria and then visa-specific requirements. It is important to have a visa eligibility assessment prior to starting your application process, to ensure you meet the requirements for this program and to discover any additional options that might be better suited to your needs (such as the Provincial Nominee Program).
Depending on the complexity of your immigration case and to make a potentially complicated process smoother, we recommend that you speak with an immigration professional who can guide you towards obtaining your Canadian visa.
Great North Visa immigration team and RCIC’s are well experienced with handling any type of immigration case – as simple and as complicated as can be. We assisted many of our clients from around the world to achieve a Canadian visa for themselves and their families.
We provide many services that may come in handy: job searching tools, C.V optimization services, document collection, guidance, and support in obtaining WES, settlement solutions, and more.
Click below to be assigned a personal immigration agent today and start your exciting journey to Canada!