The Canada visa pool is now open! Floaties optional.
Want to live in Canada for up to two years with visa support, a pre-arranged seasonal job and five nights' accommodation when you land? Do Canadian bears *beep* in the woods?
Fancy a yarn?
What she said
"I wouldn’t take anything back, this has been the best experience of my life.”
Mia, JENZA roadtester
Get on board
We provide the visa application help, pre-arranged job and arrival support you need to spend up to two years living and working overseas in Canada.
Starting in Vancouver or Toronto, our optional group start dates allow you to spend the first six days of your Canada working holiday with people like you. With five nights’ hostel accommodation, arrival orientations and job workshops – it’s the best way to settle into Canadian life before starting work.
Sure, getting your working holiday visa for Canada can be a bit of a hill to climb, but that’s where yours truly comes in.
About the visa
Who and for how long
To work in Canada, you must have a work permit from International Experience Canada (the IEC). The IEC visa allows you to work for up to 23 months in any industry, other than the sex industry. You’re only allowed one visa per lifetime, so it’s designed to grab life by the snowballs and make it count.
There are only a limited number of IEC Canada visas each year, and so applications work via a pool system. (Not the fun pina colada kind, the kind where if your name is drawn out, you’ll be sent an ‘Invitation to Apply’ for your work permit).
Fast forward some more forms and a biometrics appointment, and you'll receive your ‘Port of Entry’ letter to work in Canada. You then have 12 months to enter the country.
The IEC visa pool opens in Dec/Jan each year, and usually stays open until Sep/Oct. Applying early ensures your profile is exposed to the maximum number of name draws.
If you’ve already have had an IEC Canada visa, talk to us about our returner visas. These include the RO letter (Recognised Organisation) and Young Professionals visa.
Confused? Scroll the page to watch Jessie explain the visa process.
Make it work
Where and what you can do
Your visa allows you to do casual or career work. Typical backpacker and gap year jobs include working in tourism, hospitality, sales, labouring, childcare, retail and seasonal work in ski and summer resorts.
Seasonal jobs are the most popular options for travellers when they first arrive – working as a housekeeper, server, barista, chef, lift attendant, rental technician, driver or ski instructor. The minimum wage differs per state or province, with Alberta, Ontario and British Colombia all around the CAD $15 mark. Most of our pre-arranged ski and summer season employers pay between $15-21 an hour, plus tips where applicable.
You can also work in industries related to your career, education or trade – such as nursing, beauty, marketing, finance, recruitment and everything between. Here your earning potential will be higher, especially with a two-year visa to build up your experience.
Start Toronto or Vancouver
While numbers are not guaranteed (especially outside of the ski season), we suggest timing your flights with our group arrival dates and monthly social:
However, SWAP (our in-country partners) run an in-person arrival orientation every Wednesday, so you can arrive at any time and we'll book your hostel accommodation around your flights.
IEC visa pool and application support
The IEC doesn't allow us to apply for your visa on your behalf, but we're with you the whole way – with the correct forms, one-on-one calls and visa webinars to ensure your application is submitted correctly.
Your visa fee (currently CAD $256) is paid directly to the Canadian government, and you must also attend a biometrics appointment at a designated biometrics centre to have your photo and fingerprints taken.
The whole visa process from entering the IEC visa pool to receiving your ‘Port of Entry’ letter can take between 2-3 months. We suggest booking as soon as the pool opens for the best chance of securing a visa.
Unlimited pre-vetted working holiday jobs
We include job interviews before you go, plus unlimited working holiday jobs on the road. It's how we work.
Our Dream Jobs team scour the planet finding seasonal employers who are looking to take on working holidaymakers. They’re pre-vetted to make sure everything is legit, and once you get your ‘Invitation to Apply’, you can start searching and applying for positions on our JENZA Job Hub.
If you want to sort a job before you go, we work with some of the top resorts in Canada, including in Banff and Whistler, to help you secure a 4-6 month ski season or summer job. Depending on the resort, you’ll need to commit to the full winter season (Nov-Mar) or summer season (May-Sep). Almost all our seasonal employers include subsidised staff housing (around $400-600 per month) and great perks such as discounted lift passes, gear hire, and ski or snowboard lessons.
If you’d rather wait until you land, a job workshop is included in your arrival orientation. You’ll also have access to our JENZA Job Hub for your whole visa.
Expert advice from people who’ve been
Your Work Canada ride or die, all our JENZA Support Squad have worked the world, so can give you firsthand advice on moving overseas. As well as being a geeky bunch of travel nerds and visa whisperers, we're also mental health awareness trained. Which means we know how to connect like humans – not customer service bots.
On top of one-on-one video calls, visa webinars and pre-departure handbooks, there’s a group call with the team in Canada every Tuesday to answer all your questions before you go.
Arrival orientation with 5 nights' accommodation
If you’re heading straight for the mountains or don’t want to go via Vancouver or Toronto, you can use your accommodation in Banff or Calgary at any point in your trip.
SIN, bank account and more
This is all the un-sexy stuff, but essential and legal stuff you need to start working in Canada. When you arrive, the SWAP team will help you to set up:
Plus, these JENZA community perks
Free (or close to free) stuff Our favourite F word. Score hundreds of overseas discounts with our virtual JENZA X IYTC card.
Earn extra cash Shot it? Share it. We pay for blogs, vlogs, images and videos. DM us on Insta and send us a pitch.
Ask an alumni Hear from people who've been. We try to have an alumni on every pre-departure call to answer all your questions.
Find a friend Meet people like you. Connect with travellers arriving at the same time on our JENZA Discord group chats.
Book now pay later Secure your spot with $200 deposit, paying the balance eight weeks before you fly.
About our pricing Our mission is to make working abroad more accessible. Meaning we do everything we can pay our team, support our partners and make a profit – without screwing over the people who matter. Read about how our pricing works and the people involved in making your JENZA happen.
We also walk the walk, donating 5% of profits to our overseas scholarship fund.
What’s not included
Support funds (CAD $)
You are required to show proof that you can access CAD $2,500.
Travel insurance for Canada
You may be asked for your policy documents at immigration, so you must take out comprehensive travel insurance to cover you for your whole stay. For example, if you book a six-month policy to save money, you run the risk of your visa being stamped for that duration – not the full duration of your visa.
In-person biometrics appointment
This is a condition of your visa and currently costs CAD $85.
Visa fee Canada
This is paid directly to the Canada Embassy and currently costs CAD $256.
Canada police background check
You need to provide a police check for every country you have continuously lived in for 6+ months since the age of 18. The process and cost varies per country.
We don’t recommend booking flights until your visa is approved.
The great returners
Already used your Canada IEC visa?
All is not lost! JENZA is also allocated RO letters (Recognised Organisation) and Young Professional visas that could still allow you to work in Canada. Set up a call to see if you qualify.
All the inspo and intel on life in Canada
Need to know / Canada
We came, we read, we spent two years living and working in Canada.
Travel you can trust
Our Extra Mile Promise
Every JENZA experience has been shaped by our Youth Advisory Panel, roadtested by our travellers, and backed by 60+ years of work abroad expertise. But if we still don’t rock your world, we’ll refund the part of your JENZA program you’re not happy with. T&Cs apply