How to immigrate from Nigeria to Canada in simple steps without breaking the bank

How to immigrate from Nigeria to Canada in simple steps without breaking the bank

Known for its cultural diversity, high standard of living and great opportunities, Canada remains a popular destination for individuals looking for a fresh start. If you are a Nigerian considering immigration to Canada, this guide provides a comprehensive overview of the steps, requirements and considerations involved in the immigration process.

1.1. Understanding Canadian colonial methods

Canada offers a variety of immigration options, each tailored to different circumstances and requirements. It is important to understand these options before you start your relocation plan. Here are some of the main migration methods.

Express Entry System

The Express Entry System manages applications for three federal economic immigration programs: the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canada-Experience Class. Candidates are sorted by factors such as age, education, work experience and language skills.

Provincial Enrolled Programs (PNPs)

 Canadian provinces and territories have their own immigration programs designed to address specific labor market needs and economic priorities. Each province or territory sets its own eligibility criteria and registration process.

Family Assistance

Canadian citizens and permanent residents may assist family members, including spouses, dependent children, parents and grandparents, to immigrate to Canada.

Study Permit.

 It is an alternative immigration method to obtain an education in Canada. International students can obtain study permits and be eligible for post-graduate work permits and permanent residence upon graduation.

 Temporary Work Permits

Temporary work permits allow individuals to work in Canada for a specified period. This pathway can serve as a stepping stone towards permanent residency.

2. Assessing Eligibility

Before applying for immigration, it's essential to assess your eligibility based on the specific immigration pathway you intend to pursue. Factors such as age, education, language proficiency, work experience, and adaptability play a crucial role in determining eligibility. Consult official immigration websites and tools to evaluate your eligibility for different programs.

3. Completing Language Proficiency Rests 

Proficiency in English or French is vital for immigrating to Canada. Applicants must demonstrate language proficiency by taking approved language tests such as the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or the Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) for English, or the Test d'évaluation de français (TEF) for French.

4. Obtaining Educational Credential Assessments (ECAs)

If you completed your education outside Canada, you may need to obtain an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) to assess the equivalency of your foreign educational credentials to Canadian standards. Organizations such as the World Education Services (WES) evaluate foreign credentials and provide ECAs.

5. Creating an Express Entry Profile

For those considering the Express Entry system, creating an Express Entry profile is the first step. Provide accurate information about your skills, work experience, language proficiency, education, and other relevant details. Based on your profile, you'll receive a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score, which ranks you against other candidates in the pool.

6. Exploring Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)

Research and explore Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) offered by various Canadian provinces and territories. Each PNP has its eligibility criteria and streams tailored to specific skill sets and labor market demands. Determine which province's program aligns best with your qualifications and career goals.

7. Gathering Required Documentation

Gather all necessary documentation required for your immigration application. This may include passports, birth certificates, marriage certificates, educational transcripts, language test results, police certificates, and other supporting documents. Ensure all documents are accurate, up-to-date, and meet the requirements specified by Canadian immigration authorities.

8. Submitting Your Immigration Application.

Once you have completed your profile or gathered the necessary documents for your chosen immigration pathway, submit your application through the appropriate channels. Follow the instructions provided by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) or the relevant provincial immigration authorities carefully to avoid delays or rejection.

9. Waiting for Application Processing

The processing times for immigration applications vary depending on the program, the volume of applications, and other factors. Be patient and regularly check the status of your application through the online portals provided by IRCC or the relevant provincial authorities.

10. Preparing for Arrival in Canada

Upon receiving approval for immigration, begin preparations for your relocation to Canada. This includes arranging travel plans, securing temporary accommodation, researching communities and neighborhoods, and familiarizing yourself with Canadian culture, laws, and customs.

11. Settling in Canada

Once you arrive in Canada, focus on settling in and adapting to your new environment. Open a bank account, obtain a Social Insurance Number (SIN), explore job opportunities, enroll children in school if applicable, and access essential services such as healthcare.

12. Embracing Canadian Culture and Integration

Embrace Canadian culture and engage with the local community to facilitate your integration into Canadian society. Participate in cultural events, join community groups, and take advantage of resources and support services available for newcomers.

Type of work permit in Canada

For Nigerians seeking to work in Canada, several types of work permits are available, depending on their qualifications, job offer, and intended duration of stay. Here are some common types of work permits suitable for Nigerians:

1. Employer-Specific Work Permit:

This type of work permit is tied to a specific employer in Canada.
Nigerians can apply for an employer-specific work permit if they have a job offer from a Canadian employer who has obtained a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or qualifies for an LMIA exemption.
The employer must demonstrate that there is a genuine need for a foreign worker to fill the position and that no Canadian citizen or permanent resident is available to do the job.

2. Open Work Permit:

An open work permit allows Nigerians to work for any employer in Canada, except for those who are ineligible to hire foreign workers.
Open work permits are typically issued under specific categories such as the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) for recent graduates of Canadian institutions, the International Experience Canada (IEC) program for youth mobility agreements between Canada and certain countries, and the Spousal/Common-Law Partner Open Work Permit for spouses or partners of certain temporary residents or students in Canada.

3. International Mobility Program (IMP) Work Permit:

The International Mobility Program allows certain foreign workers to obtain work permits without the need for an LMIA.
Nigerians may qualify for an IMP work permit under various categories, including intra-company transferees, professionals under international agreements (such as NAFTA), and individuals eligible for significant economic, social, or cultural benefits to Canada.

4. Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP):

The SAWP allows Nigerians to work temporarily in Canada's agricultural sector to address seasonal labor shortages.
Participants under the SAWP must be citizens of participating countries and must be employed by an approved Canadian employer who has obtained a positive LMIA specifically for the SAWP.

5. Caregiver Program:

The Caregiver Program allows Nigerians to work as caregivers in private households in Canada, providing care for children, the elderly, or individuals with medical needs.
Applicants must meet specific requirements related to work experience, language proficiency, and the ability to live in the employer's home.
When applying for a work permit in Canada, Nigerians must meet the eligibility criteria, provide supporting documents, and adhere to the application process outlined by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). It's essential to research the specific requirements and options available based on individual circumstances before applying for a work permit in Canada.


Moving to Canada from Nigeria requires careful planning, preparation, and determination. By understanding the immigration pathways, assessing eligibility, completing necessary requirements, and navigating the application process diligently, you can embark on a successful journey towards establishing a new life in Canada. With perseverance and resilience, you can seize the opportunities and contribute to the vibrant tapestry of Canadian society.

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