express entry canada

Express Entry in Canada

If Canada demands your qualified profession, you can come to work in Canada with Express Entry.

Canada, with its incredible landscapes, high quality of life, and wide range of well-paid study and job opportunities, is one of the countries many dream of settling in.

The good news is that the Canadian government knows this, which is why it has created several programs aimed at facilitating entry into the country for all international citizens who want to make Canada their permanent home.

If you’re looking to immigrate to Canada, keep reading to learn all about the programs to obtain residency in Canada or fill out the following form to receive personalized and free advice from a Dingoos Guide.

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    What is Express Entry?

    To facilitate the entry process for international workers with different levels of education and qualifications, the Canadian government has created the Express Entry program.

    Through this program, any qualified international worker can apply for residency in Canada, allowing them to develop professionally and enjoy all the opportunities the country has to offer.

    General requirements to apply for Express Entry

    Express Entry categorizes workers based on their education and work experience. First, let’s look at the general requirements to apply for Express Entry:

    For people who have been working temporarily in Canada:

    • Have at least 1500 hours of work experience. This equates to 1 year of full-time work or 2 years of part-time work. Only work experiences obtained legally, with a work permit and a valid visa, will count.

    For people studying in Canada:

    • Successfully complete a course of at least 16 months (excluding language courses) at an accredited post-secondary institution (You can see which ones are on this list).
    • Accumulate 1500 hours of work experience. As mentioned earlier, this equates to 1 year of full-time work, and only jobs obtained with a legal work permit and a valid visa will be counted.

    Attention! If you intend to settle in Quebec, you will have to meet another set of requirements, as this province has a special program for skilled workers. We recommend visiting the official Quebec government page for the latest information.

    Types of Express Entry

    Express Entry has three programs for three profiles of workers.


    Federal Skilled Worker Program

    If you have completed higher education and already have some work experience both inside and outside Canada, you can apply for the Federal Skilled Worker Program to continue your professional career in the country. Let’s see all the requirements:

    • Have a Certificate, Diploma, or Degree that certifies your knowledge in the same field in which you are professionally developing.
    • Have at least 1 year of full-time work experience in a job classified as 0, A, or B in the National Occupational Classification (NOC) list (you can consult it here).
    • Certify that you have an English or French level of at least 7 on the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB).
    • Demonstrate that you have sufficient savings to cover your initial months in Canada.

    Federal Skilled Trades Program

    If you have chosen to develop professionally in a trade related to construction, industry, cooking, or any other service sector, and you already have some experience, the Federal Skilled Trades Program could be your key to Canada.

    The requirements to apply for this program are:

    • Have at least 2 years of work experience in the last 5 years in a job classified as B in the NOC list.
    • Have a job offer of 1 year in Canada related to your trade. Or, have an official certificate that allows you to access that job offer.
    • Certify an English or French level of at least 5 on the Canadian Language Benchmark.
    • Demonstrate that you have sufficient savings to support yourself in Canada during your first months of stay.

    Canadian Experience Class

    Have you been or are you in Canada with a temporary work or student visa? By applying to the Canadian Experience Class program, you won’t have to say goodbye to the country just yet.

    The requirements to enter this program are:

    • Have 1 year of work experience in Canada in a job classified as 0, A, or B in the NOC list. Work experience must have been acquired in the last 3 years with a legal work permit and a valid visa.
    • Certify an English or French level of at least 7 on the CLB (Canadian Language Benchmark) if working in type 0 and A jobs on the NOC list; and a level of 5 on the CLB if you have been working in a type 5 job on the NOC list.

    How to get Express Entry?

    Determined to get your Express Entry to move to Canada indefinitely? Great! Applying is very simple, and as always, all you need to do is gather some documents, create a profile on the government’s website, and wait patiently. Periodically, the Canadian government will review applications and send invitations to complete the application to candidates with the highest scores.

    Since the bureaucratic part can be a bit intimidating, let’s go through a step-by-step guide on how to complete the entire process to enter the Express Entry program and get your permanent residency in Canada. You’ll see there’s nothing to fear!


    Step 1. Check if you are eligible for any of the 3 Express Entry programs

    First things first. Check if you are eligible and which program you need to apply for.

    Simply answer this questionnaire with questions related to your age, nationality, education, work experience, and English or French level.


    Step 2. Prepare your documents

    If you have confirmed that you are eligible, it’s time to gather the official documents that will accompany your application. It’s important to prepare ahead of time because many of these papers involve multiple institutions, and these processes usually take time. The documents you will need are:

    • Certificate of studies. It’s a process that may require some time, as you know how bureaucratic procedures can be.
    • Educational Credential Assessment. If you haven’t studied in Canada, you’ll need to validate your degree with one from Canada. You can obtain this report from the World Education Services.
    • Official English or French proficiency certificate. You will need to take an official test and obtain the required score for the program you are applying to.
    • Job offer from a Canadian company. It’s not mandatory, but if you have one, prepare the documents to present them because it earns you points.
    • French Mobility Program or LMIA. If you are in Canada with a work visa from a special program, you will also need to provide documentation to prove it, as this also earns you points.

    Remember that to successfully submit your application, all documents must be in one of Canada’s two official languages, English or French. Make sure to obtain certified translations of all your diplomas and documents.


    Step 3. Create and Submit Your Profile

    Once you have gathered all the documents, you can create your profile and upload your documentation.

    We recommend that you dedicate all your attention to this step and do it calmly. Based on your data, Express Entry will allocate you a certain number of points, and you will enter the candidate pool. Don’t worry, you can enter whenever you want to update your information or upload new documentation.

    If you find that you’re short on points when filling out your application, don’t worry. There are always tricks to earn some extra points. The easiest one is to improve your English level. Look, try calculating your score by adding one more point to your English level. Have you seen how it improves? Improving your score is the best way to quickly receive your invitation to permanent residency in Canada.


    Step 4. Receive the Invitation to Apply for PR via Express Entry

    If one day you open your email and receive an ITA, you’ve made it! ITAs are invitations given by the government that allow you to complete the rest of the application to obtain residency in Canada.

    As mentioned earlier, to distribute ITAs, the Canadian government periodically conducts invitation rounds. For each round, they establish a cutoff score, and only candidates with that score or higher receive the invitation. For example, in a round with a cutoff score of 320, all candidates with that score or higher will receive their ITAs.

    After receiving the invitation and celebrating, you will have 90 days to complete your application and upload all the relevant documentation to your profile. The documents you will need to upload are:

    • Medical report certifying your good physical condition.
    • Police certificate proving that you have no criminal record in any country where you have lived for more than 6 months since reaching adulthood.
    • Educational certificates.
    • Official English or French proficiency certificate.
    • Job offer (only if you have one).
    • Bank statement showing that you have enough money to cover your stay in Canada.
    • A copy of your valid passport with at least 6 months validity.
    • Valid credit card. You will need to provide a card to pay the application and processing fees for Express Entry, permanent residency, and biometric testing. If you have dependents included in your application, you will also need to pay fees for their processing.

    Step 5. Express Entry Approved!

    If you have completed the entire process correctly and survived the wait, it is very likely that your Express Entry has been approved by now.

    The steps to follow now are slightly different depending on whether you are inside or outside Canada, but in both cases, it’s time to celebrate and relax a bit—you will soon be a permanent resident of Canada.

    How Does Express Entry Canada Work?

    Express Entry is a system with three immigration programs, focused on three different professional profiles. To participate in this program and obtain permanent residency, applicants must meet a series of requirements for each program, related to work experience, education, and English proficiency.

    ¿Necesito una oferta de trabajo para ingresar al grupo de Express Entry?

    It is not essential to complete the application, but it will give you points that can accelerate the process.

    Is there a limit on the number of candidates admitted to Express Entry?

    No, anyone who meets the requirements can apply. If you complete the application, you will enter the pool, and periodically, the government will send invitations to complete your application.

    Do I Have to Make Any Payments to Apply for Express Entry and Canadian Residency?

    No, applying is free. Only if your application is approved, you will have to pay the processing fees.

    Is Express Entry the Fastest Way to Obtain Residency in Canada?

    Yes, the Express Entry program was designed to expedite the application process for residency in Canada.

    Specifically, the Canadian government aimed to process all applications within 6 months. Thanks to Express Entry, which streamlines processes for both applicants and the workers who process applications, they are achieving this!

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