With its unique mix of French culture and winter sporting options, Canada is certainly appealing. If you’d like to spend time living and working there, find out how to go about getting a Canadian Visa.

Visiting Canada

New Zealand has a strong longstanding relationship with Canada partly due to both countries being a part of the British Commonwealth. If you are travelling on a New Zealand passport you can visit and stay in Canada for up to six months as a tourist. When you arrive in Canada you must provide proof of a return flight or on-going travel and not have the intention to work or study during your visit.

Work Permit

If you wish to stay in Canada longer than six months and earn a buck while you visit, you can apply for a Canadian Work Permit. A Work Permit allows you to work temporarily for a period of time which is chosen by the discretion of the Minister for Immigration and is usually valid for six months to one year or more.

Generally, you will need a letter confirming an employment offer for your application, which is an approval from Canada’s Human Resources and Social Development department after analysing their current Labour market performance, and really depends on what you do for work.


The working situation in the Quebec Provence is different to the rest of Canada. If you wish to apply for a Work Permit in Quebec, your potential employer in Canada initiates approval to work in Quebec on behalf of your application. The Provence provides an approval or gives you an outright refusal. They will liaise directly with the Human Resources and Social Development department and the Canadian Consulate also.

Working Holiday Program

If you are aged between 18 and 35 years of age and own a New Zealand Passport, you can apply for a Canadian Working Holiday Program Visa. You will be able to live and work freely in Canada for 12 months in any field from Ski Instructing to Sales or Bartending. You do not need a letter of employment offer for your application.

The only exception to this rule is if you happen to work in child or health care (including primary or secondary teaching) because you will need to have a medical examination which is approved by the Canadian Government.

When you arrive in Canada on your Working Holiday Program Visa you may be asked for evidence from Customs that you have sufficient funds to support yourself while looking for work in Canada. The minimum is currently NZ$4000 which you can prove with bank statements in your luggage. Generally you will need to prove that you have Travel Insurance paid for as well.


The High Commission in Wellington does not provide Canadian Visas or information on immigration matters. All New Zealand applications for Canadian visas are processed by the Canadian Consulate in Australia.

Their website contains further details about Canadian visas, as well as full application forms.

You may also be interested in reading out article on How to Get a UK Visa

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