pilipino sa canada
Filipino students celebrate their culture in Canada. Photo by @filipinosincanada

Ask any Filipino parent, and they’ll tell you that pretty much anything they do in life is for the express purpose of giving their kids a better life. Sometimes, success is measured by how much suffering a parent has to endure to send their kids to a good school.

In Canada, not so much. School is publicly funded (you know, free). Suddenly, parents have so much more time (and money) to spend elsewhere. Like on a big house or a shiny car. When kids go to college or university (two different things here in Canada, BTW), they can take out a student loan and be responsible for paying it off later.

It’s not a big secret that us Canadians are generally welcome anywhere we go. We’re polite, we know how to stand in line and we pretty much apologize for everything. That’s why people like us so much. This extend to our kids too.

Understand this: when you become a Canadian citizen, so does the rest of your family. Your kids will get to travel the world with a lot of freedom. Just like you, your kids will be issued passports that will allow them to travel to many countries with very few restrictions.

If you haven’t heard, the Canadian passport is ranked #5 in the world (compared to the Philippines, which is currently ranked #63).

The Government of Canada has a program that gives citizens aged 18-35 the opportunity to visit and work in different countries for temporary periods. They call it International Experience Canada (IEC).

It’s basically an exchange program, where Canadian students between 18-35 years old can go to different countries that Canada has agreements with to live and work abroad. And vice versa.

If you’ve got kids who would like to travel the world, there are 30 countries that Canada has bilateral agreements with. The Philippines is not one of them.

So, if your kids want to spread their wings and live abroad for a bit, tell them to sign up for the International Experience Canada (IEC). Here’s what they need to do.

1. Figure out where you’d like to go. This is the list of countries:

Australia, Austria, Belgium, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan and the United Kingdom.

Wow.

2. See if you’re eligible for a work permit in that country.

Canada is friends with all of those countries up there, but you’ll still have to meet the minimum requirements, including: age, residency and financial requirements, among other things.

3. Choose what type of work permit best suits you.

Depending on your circumstances and the country you intend to go to, you might have to choose between an open work permit or an employer specific work permit.

4. Gather your documents.

You’ll need pretty much everything you need for international travel. You need money, travel documents, all the good stuff. You need to be physically fit, so be prepared to undergo all the medicals the country of your destination might need.

5. Complete your application for IEC.

Remember that each country has different application processes. Fill out that application form, pay all the fees and send it already!

6. Start making those travel plans!

Once you’re good to go, best start looking for a place to live! Start looking online for a best deal for plane tickets and get appropriate insurance coverage.

Ready to learn more? Go here.

READ MORE: Canada just made it cheaper for kids to become Canadian citizens

READ MORE: Study in Canada: SEED scholarships now available

READ MORE: Getting married to a Canadian citizen won’t get you to Canada any faster

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