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Family Visa for Canada

Canada is one of the countries with the best quality of life in the world. That’s why many foreigners decide to move to the land of maple syrup year after year, attracted by its job opportunities and its globally recognized education system. Many of these foreigners come accompanied by their partners and children. Do you want to know why and how they do it? We, the Dingoos, will tell you!

The Government of Canada offers two alternatives for those who are not permanent residents in Canada and want to travel and live for a while in the country with their partner and children.

The first but more difficult option is through a job offer. If one member of the couple finds a job type NOC 0, A, or B, in a Canadian company, they can obtain a work visa. Thus, the other member of the couple can apply for the Open Work Permit visa, which allows them to stay in the country for the duration of their partner’s employment contract.

But getting this type of job is not easy. To do this, you will need to have a professional degree, experience, and in most cases, secure the job before traveling to Canada. In case of getting it, you could only work for the company that hired you. However, the member of the couple traveling to Canada with the Open Work Permit could work for any company.

That’s why we recommend another much simpler and easier way to travel to Canada with your partner and children: through a Master’s or PhD program at a public college or university.

Keep reading to learn more or fill out our contact form to receive personalized and free advice from a Dingoos Guide.

Do you want more info about the family visa for Canada?

Contact us and a Dingoos Guide will get in touch with you as soon as possible.

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    Family Visa for Canada through a Higher Education Program

    Canada has one of the best education systems in the world, but it also offers many facilities for the relatives of those who decide to study there, as long as it is with a higher education program, that is, a Master’s or PhD program at the university or a public college.

    This way, if you decide to enroll in a course of this category, you can travel to Canada through these higher education programs, and your partner can apply for the Open Work Permit and stay with you for a while in the country of the maple leaf. In addition, if you have dependent children, they can also accompany you.

    And you may wonder… What is the Open Work Permit?

    It is a visa that allows your partner to temporarily live in Canada while your study program lasts, and it also allows them to work full-time wherever they prefer. This last point is very helpful, especially because the cost of living in Canada is high, and an additional salary at home always helps when sharing expenses.


    For a member of the couple to be able to apply for the Open Work Permit, it is mandatory that the other member of the couple is enrolled in a higher education program, that is, it would not be enough to enroll in a language course or vocational training.


    Requirements for Higher Education Programs

    There are two types of higher education programs you can pursue in Canada: Masters and PhD, also known as doctorates. Regardless of which option you choose, you will need to study at a university or public college in Canada to be able to travel with your family.

    So, to travel to Canada through a higher education program, you will need to gather several papers, certificates, and documents that you will have to present to the Canadian Immigration Department.

    • Be over 18 years old.
    • Valid passport with more than 6 months of validity.
    • Valid international health insurance for the entire duration of the course.
    • Have completed secondary education in your country, for which you will need to show your high school diploma.
    • Certify that you have a medium/high level of English, preferably demonstrated with an official language certificate, in the case of an IELTS certificate, you will need to score from 6.0 onwards, and if it is the TOEFL, a score of more than 8.0.
    • Be enrolled in a course at one of the accredited institutions. If you want to know which ones they are, you can contact us and we will propose accredited courses and centers where you can study.
    • Two recent passport-sized photos with your name and date of birth written on the back.
    • An official document issued by the police certifying that you have no criminal record in your country of origin.
    • Letter of acceptance from the school or university.
    • Certification letter from the Canadian province you wish to travel to.
    • Motivational letter, which will help the immigration officer understand your intentions to travel to the country.
    • Demonstration of financial funds. Living in Canada is not cheap, so you will need an average fund of $25,000 CAD to cover the first year of studies.
    • Process your student visa or Study Permit. This visa is applied for online and before traveling to the country.

    If you need help with the entire process, do not hesitate to contact us. The Dingoos team will know how to guide and advise you.

    What does the family visa for Canada allow?

    As mentioned earlier, to access the family visa in Canada, you will have to be enrolled in a higher education program offered by a public college or university. This program will allow you to work for 20 hours during the academic period and up to 40 hours during vacations.

    On the other hand, your partner will have access to the Open Work Permit and therefore will be able to work 40 hours a week in whatever job they want and with the freedom to change jobs as many times as they want.

    And finally, if you have children, they can enjoy one of the best educational systems in the world for free from ages 5 to 18.

    Requirements to obtain the family visa for Canada

    If you want to travel to Canada with your partner and children, in addition to all the requirements that we have mentioned that are necessary to travel to the country through a higher education program, you will have to add a series of requirements to travel to Canada as a family (partner and children). These are:

    • Demonstrate that you are married or, on the contrary, that you have lived together for at least one year. To do this, you can present documents of the rental or purchase of the place where you have lived or show samples of bank statements if you have a joint account.
    • Demonstrate financial solvency by both parties, both the student ($10,000 CAN annually) and their partner and children ($4,000 CAN annually).
    • If you have previous work experience, you will have more opportunities to obtain residency.
    • Having higher education in your country of origin will also give you points when applying for residency.
    • Have an updated passport and make sure it does not expire during the months you will be in Canada.
    • In the case of wanting to travel with your children, you will need to show their birth certificate.
    • Family medical insurance.
    • Motivational letter. The spouse must justify in English the reason and plans for why they want to travel with their partner and children to Canada.

    What are the advantages of traveling to Canada as a family?

    We can think of thousands of advantages that make moving to Canada with the whole family a great idea. For now, here are some of them, we invite you to discover the rest on your own.

    • Linguistic immersion in two languages ​​for everyone, especially for the little ones.
    • Moving is not easy, but it is if you have your loved ones nearby. So whenever you miss someone, you will have them with you, and if you miss someone else, Dingoos will be your new family.
    • The cost of living in Canada is high, but wages are also high, so it will be good for you to have two incomes at home.
    • Studying in Canada will boost your resume and that of your family, since, as we mentioned before, the country of maple syrup has one of the best educational systems in the world.
    • Also, if you have children between 5 and 18 years old, they can attend school completely free of charge.
    • When you finish your studies, you can apply for the Post Graduation Work Permit, the permit that will allow you to work for the same time you have been studying in the country.

    How to get the family visa for Canada? Steps to follow:

    Now that we have told you about all the benefits of having a family visa in Canada and that you already know all the requirements to obtain it, we will tell you step by step what you have to do to get yours.


    Step 1: Choose your Canadian city

    Are you looking to live in a bustling city? Are you a lover of outdoor activities? Or do you prefer to live surrounded by university atmosphere?

    Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal have a lot to offer, so discover what each one has that makes it special and choose which is the perfect destination to be your next home and that of your family.


    Step 2: Make sure you control the language

    To enroll in a higher education program, you will need to have a medium/high level of English. For this, you will be asked for language accreditation. If, in addition, your partner also has a good level of English, the chances of obtaining the family visa will double.


    Step 3: Enroll in a university or professional training course with Co-Op

    Some of the main Canadian universities appear in world rankings as some of the best institutions in the world. Universities such as Toronto, British Columbia, Montreal, or Alberta, among others, offer more than 10,000 different academic programs, among which you can decide to enroll and apply for your Study Permit.

    If you decide to study a vocational training course, you will also have plenty of options and types of courses to choose from.

    And if you need help in the process, remember that the dingoes are here to help you.


    Step 4: Take out health insurance

    When traveling to Canada, it is essential to have health insurance that covers your entire stay. If you travel with Dingoos, we will help you hire the best insurance for your situation, and you will also have access to exclusive discounts.


    Step 5: Process your student visa

    If you want to travel to Canada with your partner and children through a higher education program, you will need to process your Study Permit, with which, as we have already mentioned throughout the post, you can stay in the country from 3 months up to 5 years, work part-time, and also allow your partner to apply for the Open Work Permit.

    It is one of the most requested visas, so we recommend that you count on the help of some of our Dingoos visa guides and experts, who will assist you in the process and ensure that you obtain your visa.


    Step 6: Include your partner and children in your application

    The last step before being able to travel with your partner and children to Canada through a higher education program will be to include them in your application. To do this, you will have to attach all the documents mentioned above in the section “Requirements to obtain the family visa for Canada”.

    Your partner and children can travel to Canada at the same time as you, or later, when you are already settled. In any case, they will have to apply for the corresponding visa (Open Work Permit for your partner and tourist or student visa for your children) before being able to travel to the maple leaf country.


    Step 7: Wait for the response from the Canadian Immigration Department

    From here on, all that’s left is to wait for the approval from the Canadian immigration department to begin your Canadian family adventure.

    If your application is approved, they will confirm the types of visas granted to each family member as well as their duration, among other details. If, on the contrary, your application is rejected, they will also notify you, justifying their reasons.

    Do you want to know more about Canada?

    Keep reading and discover everything you need to know about living, working, and other types of visas in Canada.


    We want you to get to know Canada. That's why we'll tell you about its main features, what its cities are like, and some interesting facts about the country that will leave you amazed. Let's go, Canada!

    Living in Canada

    Canada is one of the countries with the best quality of life in the world. Its landscapes will leave you speechless, and the friendliness of its people, known worldwide, will put a smile on your face that will be hard to wipe off during your stay in the country. Are you ready to live the Canadian dream?

    Working in Canada

    Canada enjoys a very prosperous economy and a growing job market, making it the perfect country to work for a season, whether you want to develop professionally or just find a job to cover your expenses while studying.

    Types of visas

    There are many visas that allow staying in Canada, and at Dingoos, we know them all. That's why we'll be delighted to advise you to choose the visa that suits you best. And also, we help you with all visa procedures for free so you don't have to worry about anything.

    Considerations about the Open Work Permit for your partner

    At Dingoos, we are expert travelers and have been exploring different destinations for years to give you the best advice when it comes to obtaining your visas.

    That’s why we’re going to give you some tips to help you get the Open Work Permit for your partner.

    To do this, we recommend that the person who will study travel to the country first, so not only can they settle in and get used to the place, but it will also facilitate the arrival of their partner or family. Since if you all travel together to Canada, the immigration officer evaluating your application will have more reason to believe that you intend to stay in the country, thus increasing the chances of your application being rejected.

    In this way, the member who travels later will have to present the passport of their partner already residing in Canada, as well as their study or work permits.

    Finally, the children! In the case of traveling with them, it is ideal for them to first apply for a tourist visa and accompany it, with the accompanying documentation proving that they have a family member living in Canada.

    Visas for dependent children

    If your child is over 18 but under 22, they will be considered a dependent child, as long as they are not married or in a common-law partnership.

    If you are studying a higher program and have a Study Permit, your child will have no problem getting an Open Work Permit visa. However, the cost of the process will be about $150 CAD.

    Differences in the family visa in the province of Quebec

    Unlike the rest of the country, in Quebec, the requirements of some private universities or colleges require a different financial solvency than those we have mentioned earlier. In this case, $11,000 CAD annually is required as evidence of the student’s solvency, $5,100 CAD annually from their partner, and if the child is under 18 years old, they will need to have at least $3,800 CAD per year.

    In addition to these different solvency amounts, in Quebec, you will also be required to present the “Certificat d’acceptation du Québec” (CAQ).

    And finally, they may need and ask you also to process your family visa biometric data.

    Family visa in Canada for same-sex couples

    Just as the color of your skin or hair is not relevant when making your application for both the Study Permit and the Open Work Permit, in Canada, there is absolutely no difference between an application for LGBT community members or not.

    Canada is one of the most open countries in the world, so you will not be discriminated against at any time regardless of who you love or who you are.

    Frequently Asked Questions


    Do we need to be married?

    No! It’s enough to have been living together for more than a year. To prove it, you have to submit a series of documents to certify it.


    How long does it take to process an Open Work Permit application?

    It varies depending on where you apply from, but we can tell you that on average it will take about 8 weeks.


    How much does the procedure cost to obtain the Open Work Permit?

    The procedure has an approximate cost of about $550 Canadian dollars.


    If I study a professional training course with Co-Op, can my partner come to Canada?

    Yes! In fact, this type of study is the most demanded option to obtain the Open Work Permit visa for partners.


    What can I study with a professional training course with Co-Op?

    You can practically study things from almost all fields, from art, design, and communications, through administration or computer science, to tourism and hospitality.


    What can I do if my English level is too low to access a higher education program?

    You can take an English Pathway, that is, an exam that can determine how many months you need to reach the level required in the course you want to apply for and get cracking studying from home.

    You can also arrive early in the North American country and enroll in one of our intensive English courses in Canada, so you will not only get used to the language but also to the Canadian climate and culture.


    When does the accompanying member of the couple have to apply for the corresponding visa?

    They will have to do it before arriving in the country.


    How long can the Study Permit process take?

    This process can take up to 16 weeks, it is done online and for this, official English translations of all documents must be provided.

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    Do you know about professional training courses?

    Discover the types of professional training courses with Co-Op that you can study in Canada to travel to the country with your family through a higher education program.
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    In episode 6 of the second season, Yago Quilez (host of the podcast) reviews everything you need to know about professional training courses with Co-Op in Canada. Don't miss it!
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