How to apply to Canada from the Philippines (most popular programs)

how to apply to canada from the philippines

Filipinos are one of the fastest growing communities in Canada. There are many ways for Filipinos to immigrate and apply for Permanent Residency in Canada. Here is everything you need to know about HOW TO APPLY to Canada from the Philippines.

In order to apply for immigration to Canada from the Philippines, applicants must meet the minimum requirements for the program they are applying for. One of the most popular questions Filipinos ask is: “How to apply to Canada from the Philippines?”.

In most cases, this will include having the necessary educational and work background, language proficiency as well as proof of funds (AKA “show money”).

There are many different immigration programs that Filipinos can apply for in Canada. Each program has its own requirements for application.

Immigration is under the Government of Canada‘s jurisdiction (federal), while it has special arrangements with provincial and territorial governments that allow them to nominate eligible applicants for its Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs).

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, immigration to Canada has seen a dramatic slowdown. The Government of Canada continues to impose travel restrictions that prevent most travellers from entering the country. The only exemptions from these restriction include Canadian citizens, permanent residents, essential workers and certain international students and Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs).

Immigration continues to be an important part of the Government of Canada’s economic strategies despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Newcomers to Canada continue to arrive, including permanent residents who were approved prior to the imposition of travel restrictions, as do OFWs who work in the country’s food industries.

Just before the imposition of travel restrictions, the Government of Canada announced plans of welcoming more than 1.1 million permanent residents for the next two years.

Even with travel restrictions still in place, the Government of Canada is very much focused on meeting its immigration targets as best as it can.

The number of permanent residents from the Philippines actually increased by 39.5% for the month of June 2020, when Canada welcomed 900 new permanent residents (up from 645 in July 2020).

This is a significant drop from June 2019, when 3,035 Filipinos came to Canada as permanent residents.

At the height of immigration from the Philippines in 2015, more than 50,840 entered Canada, largely driven by family reunification as a result of the now-defunct Live-In Caregiver Program (LCP).

The LCP was a popular program which was taken advantage of by OFWs who did not meet the minimum requirements of Canada’s other immigration programs. OFWs came from all over the world to work for Canadian Employers and their family. After meeting the two year employment requirement, OFWs could apply for permanent residency, including their qualified dependents, without having to meet Proof of Funds requirement.

While the number of new permanent residents have since dropped significantly from its 2015 highs, with only 27,820 Filipinos arriving in Canada as permanent residents in 2019, the Philippines still managed to place third in the list of top source countries of new immigrants to Canada.

Preparation is key to a successful application for Canada. Applicants need to have done their research on how to apply to Canada from the Philippines.


  1. Iran 6,055
  2. South Korea 6,110
  3. Eritrea 7,025
  4. Syria 10,120
  5. Pakistan 10,790
  6. USA 10,800
  7. Nigeria 12,595
  8. Philippines 27,815
  9. China 30,260
  10. India 85,585


Filipinos generally come to Canada under the following different immigration programs:


The largest number of immigrants that come to Canada do so under the Federal Economic Class, with 200,000 permanent residents projected to arrive every year for the next three years.

The largest sub-category of the Federal Economic Class is the Federal High Skilled category.

Subcategories under the Federal Economic Class include:

  • Federal Skilled Worker
  • Federal Skilled Trades
  • Canada Experience Class

The Government of Canada uses a case management system called the Express Entry System to manage immigration applications.

Applicants are required to create an online profile, which will be placed in a pool of candidates. Candidates are ranked against each other using the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) which assigns scores based on criteria including age, educational and work experience, language proficiency and others.

Successful applicants receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residency. After receiving an ITA, applicants will have 60 days to submit a complete application.

Applications submitted under the Express Entry System are usually processed within 6 months. After applications have been approved, applicants can then travel to Canada. Upon arrival, they become permanent residents.

Provincial and territorial governments also choose eligible applicants from the Express Entry pool of candidates. Chosen candidates are given additional CRS points which essentially guarantees that they will receive an ITA.


Each province and territory in Canada has its own PNP. Each PNP has its unique application requirements, which is tailored to fit the needs of its individual labour markets.


The Quebec Government has its own, separate immigration system where it gets to choose its own candidates.

Eligible applicants with the necessary education and work backgrounds, as well as strong French language skills can apply for immigration to Quebec.


Applicants with sufficient funds and proven experience operating businesses can apply under the Start Up Visa Program.


In certain cases, applicants can transition from being temporary residents to permanent residents.

Eligible applicants under different programs, including the Temporary Foreign Worker Program may be able to apply if they meet the minimum requirements for doing so.

Priority is currently being given to applicants working in priority occupations during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.


Applicants from the Philippines can apply for permanent residency for their qualified dependents through Family Class Sponsorship. This includes:

  • spouses
  • common law partners
  • conjugal partners
  • dependent children
  • parents
  • grandparents
  • brothers, sisters as well as nephews, nieces, granddaughters and grandsons who are orphaned, under 18 years old, not married or in a common-law relationship
  • other relatives under specific conditions

Requirements to sponsor eligible family members include:

  • must be at least 18 years old
  • must provide financial support is NOT affiliated with the Government of Canada, the Philippine Government, or any Philippine recruitment agencies or Canadian immigration consultants or lawyers.

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