How to move from the United States to Ottawa easily

Moving from the United States to Canada is no small feat. You can visit at any time when the pandemic isn’t an issue, but it takes much more to make a move permanent. It’s not hard to move, but it does take a concentrated effort to make it happen because you need to consider everything from getting a work permit or acquiring citizenship to finding cheap car shipping to help you move your vehicles to Canada easily.

Visiting Canada and Getting Citizenship

You should always try to visit the place you want to live in and stay there for a time if you can before you make a move. With a US passport, you can stay for up to six months without acquiring a visa. If you want to stay longer or want to live in Canada permanently, then you’ll need to take a few steps to get there.

You can get Canadian citizenship after being a permanent resident for five years. At that time, you can apply for Canadian citizenship, and the process is not terribly complicated. Use one of these three methods:

  • Find a permanent job
  • Get family to sponsor you
  • Apply for and get a Startup Visa

It’s easier for you to find a job if you’ve been in Canada for the initial six months as a visitor. From there, you can find and apply for positions that are willing to sponsor you for a work visa. Suppose you have a spouse, life partner, or conjugal partner living in Canada. In that case, they can agree to sponsor you as family, making it easier for you to apply for citizenship. Startup Visas can also be a viable way to move forward because you can apply for and receive one if you are willing to start a business in Canada. You do have to get approval for the business, and some are in more demand than others.

To apply for citizenship, you can go through either the Express Entry or Provincial Nominee program, and you’ll need several different documents. Working with other Canadian provinces for Provincial Nominees requires you to apply to each province for nomination. If you’re moving to Ottawa, for example, you would need to apply to Ontario for nomination. You will have to meet a set of requirements to qualify for nomination, and then they will have to push it through. Meanwhile, if you qualify for Express Entry, you can simply apply online no matter which province you are in Canada.

Before you start your immigration process, contact the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada department for any path to citizenship so you’ll know exactly what you need to do.

Work Permits and Dual Citizenship

If you decide to go the job route to achieve Canadian citizenship, you’ll need a work permit to work in Canada. To begin the application process, you’ll need to fit a few stipulations. You need to have a job offer from a company in Canada, and the employer needs to have a Labor Market Impact Assessment on file. You also need to prove financial stability to make a move for yourself or your family. You cannot have a criminal record in the United States, and you must be considered healthy.

It is possible to also qualify for dual citizenship if you’ve received a Permanent Residence permit and have proved eligibility for Canadian citizenship. You can keep your US citizenship in addition to Canadian citizenship, but it does take time to make it happen. Expect to work at it for a few years to become a full-fledged Canadian.

Making a Move to Ottawa

Let’s say you’ve gotten the work permit worked out, and you have a job waiting for you on the other side of the Canadian border, or maybe you have family willing to sponsor you. Now you’ve got to figure out the logistics to make a move to Ottawa. Start by purging your current home because taking less is always easier when making an international move. Once you know what you want to take with you, you’ll have to fill out a form listing everything you intend to take. It’s a list of personal effects that tells the value, model, and other pertinent information of anything you’re bringing over. Then call a moving company like to help.

To officially make a move, you need proof of employment and your visa in order and be ready to declare everything you bring into Canada. If you’re shipping a car, that’s an entirely different story. You’ll need to find a car shipping company that can allow for international shipping. They will need to deal with customs, and if your car is worth more than CAD 10,000, you will need to pay additional duty and taxes.

Moving Restrictions in Canada

There are certain things you cannot move to Ottawa with you. For example, you cannot bring in mattresses that do not have proof of cleaning and fumigation. A qualified person or company must provide documentation to give you proof. If you don’t have that document, then you cannot bring it with you.

There are also restrictions on firearms and weaponry. All of these items must be declared. If you don’t, you could lose everything to the Canadian customs department and face legal consequences. The same concept applies to any explosives or fireworks. To bring some in, you must have proper authorization. If you don’t, you will not be allowed to take them into the country.

If you have pets, that’s something else to think about. Certain animals may not be allowed if they are not properly vaccinated or in good health. Plants are also heavily restricted because Canada works to minimize exposure to invasive species. Because these are legitimate concerns, you need to know whether or not you can take these animals with you into Canada.

Stay Informed to Move to Ottawa Easily

You might have a lot of information and other things to consider, so it’s worth taking the time to make sure your ducks are in a row before moving. Start by visiting Canada, and if you decide you want to live in Ottawa, put a plan into action to acquire citizenship or a work permit. Once you have your documents in order, begin the process of moving to another country. Making a big move like that isn’t going to be accomplished in a month. Give yourself plenty of time to make it happen, and have all of the documentation you need before you get there. Remember to consider restrictions so you aren’t surprised when the time comes to call Ottawa your home.

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