Moving to Canada from the UK
Your How-to Guide

Moving to Canada from the UK and need a helping hand?  If you still have things to organise, don’t panic! The following article contains information on how to move to Canada from the UK, including moving costs, visa requirements, and top tips. We want to help make your move move to Canada easy. You’ll be happily on you way over to the Great White North in no time! So, read on, future Canadian resident.

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Can you finish reading this article in the time it takes to listen to the Canadian national anthem?

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and get ready to move!

Listen to our Spotify playlist
and get ready to move!

The Cost of Moving to Canada from the UK

Like most people, we’re sure that the cost of moving to Canada from the UK is at the top of your priority list to figure out before you move. Before we delve into the price, we just want to highlight some important factors that will affect the cost of your move to Canada:

  • Choice of moving company – Consider comparing companies by avail of free moving quotes
  • Volume – The more you move the more it will cost. Calculate your volume and save yourself some cash
  • Distance – The further you move the mover it will cost
  • Additional service – packaging, assembling, and storage

The table below shows estimations of the average moving costs to Canada from the UK, depending on the size of your property:

Household SizeTimeCost
1 bed flat9-12 days£2,500-£4,000
3 bed house9-12 days£5,500-£7,000
5 bed house9-12 days£8,000-£10,000

Disclaimer. The rates shown above are just estimates. Costs will vary depending on your actual point of departure and service rates of the company.

Do you like understanding where the costs are coming from? Then you should read our international moving costs and costs of container shipping when moving to Canada.

How can you move to Canada from the UK if you don’t have a moving company? Get free quotes and start preparing for your new life in the land of the Canucks, just fill out the form below!

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Getting a Visa for Canada

What do you need to move to Canada from the UK other than a moving company? You’ll need a visa. If you want to stay for more than six months, we can’t stress this enough, but you will need a visa to move to Canada from the UK permanently. It’s best to apply before you go, and you can even do it online!

Do You Want to Know More About Visa in Canada?
Visa applications can be a complicated process, so we put together a short guide on Canadian visas. Since a visa doesn’t need to be a hassle to apply for,
Yes, I do!

How to move to Canada: A Checklist

We know that moving to a new country, let alone a new continent, can be daunting. Therefore, to help you with your move to Canada from the UK, we’ve curated a moving to Canada checklist, to make your move easy, since we know how hard it can be!

Important documents

It can be easy to forget how important these documents are, but you’ll need them to apply for your visa, healthcare card, tax, and jobs. We recommedn you don’t forget them and to have duplicates! They can be expensive and take time to replace, trust us.

  • Passport
  • Visa and Work Permits
  • Birth Certificate
  • Marriage Certificate
  • Medical Documentation (including dental and immunizations)
  • University Degree(s)
  • Police Background Check

Organise an international moving company

Request quotes from moving companies to find the best international mover for your needs and set a moving date. If you haven’t yet done this, be sure to get up to five free quotes from us.

Pack

Read our expert packing guide for special tips to optimise your move. Be ruthless with your selections, especially with furniture. Let’s be honest, you do not need the broken table that you have been meaning to fix for a decade, or the lamp that has been collecting dust in the cupboard.

Pets

We know how important furry friends are. To make sure you don’t have to leave them behind, take note. When moving to Canada from the UK with a cat or dog you need:

  • Valid Rabies Vaccination Certificate
  • Veterinary Certificate

To learn more about the specific criteria for other pets, check out the Canadian Government’s page on import requirements.

Tax

You must inform HMRC when you move abroad. After moving to Canada, you need to apply for a social insurance number through the Canadian government as it’s necessary to work and pay taxes.

Of course, that’s not all there is to taxes. And if you want to be more informed (who doesn’t?), then read our page on taxes in Canada to find out more.

If you want more an even more thorough checklist, go check out our moving abroad checklist. What’s better than having one checklist? Having two!

Moving to Canada from UK

Want to Work in Canada?

Canada has a robust and competitive job market, which can make finding a job difficult but well worth it. You’ll likely need a job to get a visa, so the sooner you start searching the better!

Key Industries

So, knowing the key industries will help you narrow your search and see where it’ll be best for you to find a job. The key industry will change by region, but the key industries across Canada are:

  • Agriculture
  • Technology
  • Services
  • Energy
  • Manufacturing

Job Search

Nevertheless, it can be hard to find jobs somewhere that is so far away from the UK. We have therefore provided you with a list of job search websites below:

The Toronto skyline with its iconic TV tower

What to Expect After You’ve Moved to Canada from the UK

So far, we’ve mainly focused on the process and costs of moving to Canada, but what about once you’ve arrived? Well, we’ve some post moving to Canada from the UK advice for you.

The Cost of Living in Canada

While our priority is to ensure that we help you keep your cost of moving to Canada from the UK down, we also recognise that you might have anxieties about expenses once you arrive. Like any other country, the cost of living in Canada depends on multiple factors, such as location, and lifestyle.

However, here is a list of common cost of living metrics, with a comparison between Canada and the UK, so you know what to expect from your new home (and can avoid being ripped off!) For the sake of comparison, all prices are written in GBP. 

MetricCanadaUK
Rent for 1 bed apartment in city centre£771£758
Basic monthly utilities for 85m2 apartment£91.80£155.87
1L of milk£1.45£0.91
Cappuccino£2.44£2.75
0.5L draught beer£3.46£3.63
1L of gasoline£0.66£1.27

Money and Banking in the Great White North

When you arrive, it is advised that you open a Canadian bank account as soon as possible. All of the ‘Big Five’ Canadian banks listed below cater for newcomers, so do some research as to which bank best suits your circumstances:

Canada also has its own currency, and despite similarly featuring the queen, it is not interchangeable with the British Pound. We know you’ll likely want to exchange currency before you go.

Fun Fact: Canada has been using polymer banknotes since 2012.

How does the Canadian Health System Work?

One of the most important things to organise once you move to Canada is healthcare. However, you’re in luck; the Canadian health system bares many resemblances to the UK’s. As Medicare, which uses funds from the government.

All Canadian citizens, permanent residents, and residents are eligible for this public health system, however, expect long waiting times when seeking medical help through Medicare. So, when moving to Canada consider getting health insurance to access private healthcare options if you, like most of us, can’t stand long queues!

Similar to the UK, there are a few things you should expect to pay for even if you are covered by Medicare, including:

  • Drugs: you will probably have to pay for any drugs and medicine you are prescribed.
  • Dentists: you should expect to pay for dental care.
  • Opticians: you should expect to pay for any care from opticians.

To enjoy the benefits of the Canadian healthcare system, you should apply for a national healthcare card upon arrival. Make sure you are privately insured in the meantime since you may have to wait up to three months to receive it!

Can you import your car to Canada?

In general, cars sold in countries other than the United States and Mexico cannot be imported to Canada, so it’s unlike you’ll be able to bring your car. There are some exceptions which are listed below:  

  • It is 15 years or older (a real golden oldie!)
  • The vehicle is a bus manufactured before January 1, 1971
  • The car is non-regulated
  • The vehicle is bought new from manufacturer and meets all Canadian standards, the manufacturer must provide proof to the Canadian government

Fun fact: in Nunavut in northern Canada, licence plates are shaped like polar bears!

Driving License

When you arrive in Canada, you can use your UK driver’s license for the first couple of weeks, but you’ll need to exchange it for a regional license to keep driving. Fortunately, it’s very easy to do when you’re from the UK. It varies by province, but common things you need are:

  • Required ID
  • Your current driver’s licence
  • Fee for your licence
  • Proof of driving experience
  • Proof of Residency

For more information check out the Canadian government’s page on driving.

Ready for Your Move to Canada?

We’re sure our great advice on how to move to Canada from the UK has made you an expert on moving, so soon you’ll be a toque wearing canuck!

If you’re hungry for more knowledge on moving, don’t hesitate to continue reading to prepare to for your move with the help of the articles we have linked for you below.

One last piece of advice about moving to Canada from the UK: wrap up warm! The coldest temperature ever recorded was in Canada: -63°C is definitely not bikini weather.