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International Experience Canada & COVID-19 - Updates

If you are an applicant in the Working Holiday, Young Professional, or International Co-op category, you are allowed to come to Canada if you have a valid job offer. You also need to present a Port of Entry Letter of Introduction as well as health care insurance coverage. Your insurance must cover COVID-19. Failure to present adequate insurance coverage can cause a denial of entry to Canada.

If you already have a valid work permit but is currently outside of Canada for vacation or other reasons, you are also exempt from the travel restrictions. As part of the Public Health requirements, you will need to undergo a mandatory quarantine for 14 days upon arriving in Canada.

Unfortunately, during the COVID-19 pandemic, sending IEC invitations is on hold until further notice. You can still create your profile into IEC pools but applications are not being processed. If your application is ‘in process’, do not worry. IRCC understands the limitations brought about by the current situation, therefore your application will not be closed or refused because of lack of documentation.

If your employment start date had been affected because of travel restrictions, you will need to contact your employer and make sure that your offer of employment is still valid. If your employer has withdrawn the offer of employment, it will not be considered an IEC application and your participation fee will be refunded.

For those who are already in Canada with an expiring work permit, you can check the Canada website to see if you are eligible to renew your work permit. If you are not eligible to extend your work permit but cannot return to your home country because of the pandemic, you need to apply for a visitor visa before your work permit expires. Note that visitor visa holders are not allowed to work in Canada. If your work permit has already expired, you have the option to apply to ‘restore your status’ provided you submit this within 90 days of the expiration date of your work permit.

For employer-specific IEC work permit holders whose workplace has closed because of COVID-19, you can change your employer as long as your new job still meets the requirements of Young Professionals or International Co-op Categories. You can also be eligible for the CERB only if you meet the eligibility requirements.

We are here to help, if you have any question, please feel free to contact us via email at or at 403-471-8035.

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