How to work in Canada as a foreigner?

15 April, 2022

You want to know how to work in Canada as a foreigner? We provide a complete guide focused on all foreigners who want to work in the great country of the north. Legal requirements, where to look for jobs and more…

How to work in Canada as a foreigner?

Benefits of working in Canada

As a summary, these are just some of the great benefits that you can receive when work in Canada as a foreigner:

  • Good salaries. By law, foreigners must earn wages equivalent to Canadians.
  • Certain jobs allow workers’ spouses and children to accompany them to Canada.
  • By gaining work experience in Canada, foreign nationals can increase their eligibility for various permanent residence programs in the country.

See: CDL New York Requirements – How do I get the license?

Do foreigners need a work permit to work in Canada?

Generally, a work permit is required to work in Canada, but in some cases it is possible to work without a work permit.

The requirement to apply for a work permit depends on the type of work you want to do in the country.

To find out if you need a work permit, go to this link on the Government of Canada website. If you aspire to a job that is not on that list, then you will need to apply for a work permit.

There are 2 types of work permit:

  • Employer-specific work permit – Permit associated with specific employers, which implies working for the same employer in the same place, unless you modify the work permit.
  • Open work permit – Permission to work with any Canadian employer.

For more information on work permits in Canada, go here.

And to start the process to obtain a work permit, access this link.

What do I need to work in Canada as a foreigner?

It depends on the type of job you want to apply for, but it is usually required a:

  • Work permit
  • LMIA (Labor Market Impact Assessment) if required by the employer.
  • SIN (social insurance number – social security number) – you can get it at a Service Canada office.

To obtain a work permit, most foreign candidates will need a Canadian job offer supported by an LMIA.

Once the work permit is obtained, it is necessary to apply for a social security number.

Please note that Canadian citizens and permanent residents do not need a work permit or visa to work in Canada.

how to work in Canada as a foreigner

What is LMIA in Canada?

LMIA is a document that an employer in Canada may need before hiring a foreign worker.

A positive LMIA indicates that there is a need for a foreign worker for a certain position and, at the same time, means that no Canadian worker is available to do that job.

ESDC (Employment and Social Development Canada) is the government department in charge of overseeing the LMIA process.

Canadian employers who need to hire foreigners are often required to obtain a positive or neutral LMIA from ESDC.

After obtaining it, the foreigner can go to the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) to process their work permit.

What is the cost of a work permit?

The cost of a work permit is 100-155 CAD (Canadian dollars) per person, depending on the type of work permit.

Renewal costs 355 CAD ($278 USD American dollars). Here you can see the costs.

Requirements to apply for a work permit to work in Canada as a foreigner

The requirements vary depending on the type of work permit requested for the job position you are applying for, but these documents are generally required:

  • Completed application forms
  • Proof of status in Canada -if applicable-
  • Proof of family member status -if applicable-
  • Certificate of no criminal record -if applicable-
  • LMIA -if applicable-
  • Written offer of employment -if applicable-
  • CV
  • Marriage certificate -if applicable-
  • Québec Certificate of Acceptance (CAQ) -if applicable-
  • Proof that you meet the job requirements.
  • Valid passport copy
  • Copy of the education card
  • Results of the medical examination -if applicable-
  • Prove financial means to remain in Canada and return to your home country
  • Proof of payment of applicable government fees
  • Recent passport size photos

Here you can find a simple and complete explanation on how to put together your CV to work in Canada.

Where to look for work in Canada?

Job Bank del Gobierno de Canadá


Government of Canada Jobs

Work Global Canada

Watch: Florida CDL Requirements – How do I get the license?

What jobs to look for in Canada?

If you want to know how to work in Canada as a foreigner, we suggest you start your search in these 4 job areas:

Apps – Driver and delivery man


This is a job in high demand in Canada, which is usually filled by foreign candidates.

According to a report by the Conference Board of Canada, some 142,000 nurses will be needed in the next 10 years.

An experienced registered nurse could earn around CAD128,700.

To qualify, you must register with the Canadian Nurses Association (CAN) or the Canadian Council for Practical Nurse Regulators (CCPNR).

Construction worker

The construction sector is another area with great demand for foreigners. On average, the salary of a construction worker in Canada is $40,950 per year or $21 per hour, while more experienced workers earn up to $52,650 per year, according to

The province of Saskatchewan is one of the main poles of the construction industry, leading residential construction throughout the country.

Indeed often posts multiple construction jobs.

Truck driver

During the 2019-2028 period, nearly 120,000 trucker vacancies are expected. The average salary for a truck driver in Canada is $49,718 CAD per year.

Additionally, it should be noted that as of 2020 there has been a growing shortage of local truckers in Canada.

What other jobs are in high demand in Canada?

According to the multinational employment agency Randstad, the 15 most in-demand jobs in Canada for 2022 are:

  1. account executive
  2. developer
  3. Marketing Manager
  4. registered nurse
  5. Driver
  6. Customer Service Representative
  7. Welder
  8. An engineer
  9. Counter
  10. Cloud Architect
  11. Human resources manager
  12. Electrician
  13. IT project manager
  14. Mechanical engineer
  15. accounting clerks

If you want to read more about how to work in Canada as a foreigner, we recommend this article, published on Canadim.