How to Move to Canada With no Money

boat beside dock

Canada stands proud as one of the best countries to move to, and this is not without reason. From the top-tier quality of life it presents to residents to a thriving job market, Canada is a perfect spot for people in search of green fields.

While moving to Canada without spending a dime is impractical, there are cheaper options you should consider.

This article will take you through these affordable options and show you how to profit from them.

So, read on!

Things You Should Know About Moving to Canada

Are you seeking ways to move to Canada without draining your bank account? It’s good you begin by learning about this big country.

Canada is a multicultural and inclusive nation. Little wonder stories of immigrants abound in the pages of Canada’s history. Out of 38,654,738 people that call Canada home, 21.5% are immigrants.

To fill up the vital gaps in the country’s labor market, the Canadian government plans to let in 1,329,700 ex-pats between 2022 and 2024.

But before joining the stream of people migrating to Canada, you should consider these key issues.

1.   The Immigration Pathway That Suits Your Travel Needs

Discovering the immigration pathway that best suits your travel needs should be a top priority. In Canada, there are numerous immigration programs. These programs are pathways for gaining entrance into the country. Each one targets a select group and has unique requirements.

You should consider the intent spurring you to move to Canada. This will help you to determine your eligibility status and choose a program that’s appropriate for you.

For instance, if you intend to study, travel, or work temporarily in Canada, a pathway to temporal residence will be your best shot. But if you intend to become a permanent resident in Canada, you’ll have to select a pathway toward permanent residence.

If you wish to become a permanent Canadian resident here is a detailed list of some immigration pathways you should look into.

  • Express Entry Pathway: This is the immigration pathway for skilled workers who wish to gain permanent residence in Canada. The programs under the express entry pathway are three namely:
    • The Canadian Experience Class Program
    • The Federal Skilled Worker Program
    • The Federal Skilled Trade Program
  • Atlantic Immigration Programs: If you’re a foreign skilled worker or an international student that graduated from a Canadian institution, you can obtain permanent residence through this program.

But if you choose this pathway, you’ll have to live and work either in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, and Labrador.

Fast Fact: The city of Quebec does not have a Provincial Nominee Program. However, it has an immigration program that is autonomous from the federal and other provincial immigration programs.

2.   When to Apply for Visa and Permits

Until you’ve discovered your eligibility status and the immigration pathway that’s best for you, don’t apply for a visa. There are several visa options for moving to Canada, just as there are numerous pathways. But once you know your eligibility status and the immigration pathway that suits your needs, you’ll know the appropriate visa to apply for.

This will make it easier for you to find the documentation necessary for the visa application.

Also, if you’re employed by a Canadian employer or received a letter of acceptance to study at a Canadian university, you’ll need permits. In either of these cases, you’ll need a work permit or a study permit.

You should apply for and obtain these permits before moving to Canada.

3.   The Cost of Living in Canada

According to numbeo, the cost of living without rent for a single person is C$1,199.85, while a family of four will need C$4,319.15. Depending on where you’re migrating from, this may be high or low.

So, you must determine if you can meet up to the cost of living in Canada.

4.   Accommodation

It is ideal that you find accommodation before moving to Canada. However, renting an apartment in Canada from a different country might not be easy. So, if you’re unable to get accommodation before moving to Canada, you should budget for hotel bills or get temporary lodging through Airbnb.

Also, if you get your application to become a permanent resident approved, you can get settlement information through the pre-arrival services provided by the Canadian government.

Now that you’re aware of these key issues about moving to Canada, let’s discuss the cheapest ways to move to Canada.

The Cheapest Ways to Move to Canada

There’s a price tag attached to moving to Canada. You’ll incur costs for the flight ticket and various applications you’ll make. Besides, the Canadian government requires that you show proof of funds.

This is to ensure that you’ll have enough money to support yourself—and your family— while in Canada. Proof of funds is a document showing your financial profile. It could be a written statement from your bank or proof of stock investments.

When you’re invited to apply to move to Canada, you’re generally required to present this document. The document has to show that you have the minimum amount prescribed by the Canadian government.

Below is the minimum amount you should have in your account as prescribed by the federal government of Canada.

The number of Family MembersFunds Required (in Canadian Dollars)
For every other additional family memberC$3,586

However, if you don’t have the amount, don’t get dismayed. You can still move to Canada even if you don’t have much in your account.

Here are the cheapest ways for moving to Canada.

1.   Canadian Experience Class

If you choose the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) program as your pathway for entering Canada, you don’t need to show proof of funds. To qualify for the CEC, you must be a skilled federal worker with Canadian work experience desirous to move to Canada as a permanent resident.

You must get the job experience within the last three years before applying for the CEC. Remotely working for a Canadian company while in another country does not suffice for Canadian work experience.

However, you can capitalize on the next option if you do not have Canadian work experience.

2.   Valid Job Offer and Authorization to Work in Canada

Getting employed by a Canadian employer is an express route to Canada. No matter the entry program you qualify for, you won’t need to show proof of funds. Obtaining employment raises the presumption that you’ll be able to cater to your financial needs while in Canada.

But you have to get authorization to work in Canada. So, when you get a job offer, promptly apply for a work permit. Otherwise, you’ll still have to show proof of funds.

3.   Sponsorship

This is the cheapest means of entering Canada. If you have a spouse or a relative who is either a Canadian citizen or a permanent Canadian resident, they can sponsor your move into Canada.

Your sponsor will be financially responsible for your stay in Canada so, you won’t need to show any proof of funds.

Also, if you’re going to Canada to study on a full scholarship, the proof of your scholarship suffices as proof of funds.

4.   Provincial Nominee Programs(PNPs)

Sending your applications to move to Canada directly to a province can help you save costs. Some provinces require proof of funds lesser than that prescribed by the federal government.

Also, some provinces have made applying for their nominee programs free of cost once you apply to them directly. Some such provinces are Yukon, Nova Scotia, and Northwest Territories.

However, while applying directly to a province, ensure that you intend to live and work or study in that province.


No doubt, moving to a new place can be nerve-racking, considering the processes and the financial requirements involved. But thanks to this article, right? Now, you know that your travel needs will place demands on your finances.

However, the fact that you can’t move to Canada with no money shouldn’t squash your dreams of moving to Canada. Rather, save up what you can and position yourself to become eligible to harness the cheaper options.

I’ll be here rooting for you!

Frequently Asked Questions About Moving to Canada

Is It Difficult to Move to Canada?

Generally, moving to Canada is not hard. The country has up to 80 immigration pathways that you can take advantage of.

But, if you don’t meet the eligibility criteria for any of the programs, or can’t afford the cost, moving to Canada will be difficult for you.

What Documents Do I Need to Move to Canada?

The documents you need to move to Canada will depend on the immigration pathway that you choose. However, these are the basic documents you should have while moving to Canada.

  • Your visa
  • Valid passport or other travel documents
  • Proof of funds (if applicable)
  • Medical records
  • Police clearance certificate

Who Is a Skilled Worker?

A skilled worker is a person who has the skills, education, qualifications, and experience needed for a particular occupation. Canada categorizes skilled jobs for immigration purposes using the National Occupational Classification (NOC).

As a skilled worker, you can obtain permanent residence through any of the express entry programs. There are also several programs available for skilled workers under the diverse Provincial Nominee Programs.

Can I Move to Canada Without a Job?

Of course, you can. You don’t need to have a job to move to Canada. There are numerous immigration programs available for people without job offers that want to move to Canada.

But, if you’re eligible for either the Federal Skilled Worker Program or  Skilled Trades Program, and can’t support yourself and your family in Canada you’ll need a job offer.

Is Healthcare Free in Canada?

Not really. While Canadian citizens and permanent residents don’t pay directly for most of their healthcare services, they do so indirectly. Canadians might be unaware of this, but they do pay for Medicare services through taxation.

This healthcare tax is calculated based on earnings. According to Fraser Institute, an average Canadian family (two parents, two children) earning $119,082 will pay $11,735 for public health care while a single individual earning $42,244 will pay $4,222.

However, the healthcare system is not comprehensive. You’ll have to pay for services like dental care and getting prescription drugs.

How Much Is Rent in Canada?

According to, the average rent for all property types in Canada is $1,959 per month. But depending on the city where you settle down, you might spend above or below this average.

Here is a list of the cheapest cities to rent an apartment in Canada.

  • Lloydminster
  • Saskatoon
  • Regina
  • Fort Mcmurray
  • Winnipeg
  • Windsor