Now accepting applications for the 2017 program!
The InterExchange Work & Travel Canada program gives U.S. young adults the chance to experience Canada while taking on seasonal jobs. Whether you already have a job in mind or just want to experience the country and pick up work along the way, our program gives you a leg up and a smoother transition.
Participating on this program means that you will be a participant on the International Experience Canada (IEC) - Travel and Work program, meaning you will have one year during which you can work, travel and live in Canada.
Once you have your approval to travel you are welcome to enter Canada on any date. You should allow several weeks to complete the InterExchange and IEC work permit applications. In many cases the whole process has taken about eight weeks (based on typical processing times in 2016 and subject to change).
The program includes an optional orientation session in Toronto or Vancouver, covering the job search, logistics of living and working in Canada, finding housing and more. Whether you start in one of these two cities or pass through them at a later date you are welcome to attend a session any Thursday. If you're out of the way you are welcome to touch base with the InterExchange partner organization through phone or email throughout your program.
Your permit will allow you to stay in the country for one year and we recommend taking as much of this time as you can to experience the beauty of Canada. Many participants travel for the summer only but if you can add a few extra weeks, do it! You will receive updates through social media and a regular newsletter on social activities and happenings around the country.
The International Experience Canada (IEC) Travel and Work program is meant as a chance to explore Canada with the option to take on seasonal jobs for a maximum of one year. Many participants already have an idea of what they will be doing in Canada but others travel without a job lined up and take advantage of the job support provided by our partner in Canada. This is up to you. If you have a specific date in mind to travel please consider the time it takes to complete the InterExchange and IEC applications.
Most participants take on work in fields including hospitality (restaurants, bars, hostels, hotels, etc.), travel and tourism or seasonal work at ski resorts or summer camps. Manual labor positions and office temping are also possible. Many jobs don't require previous experience so don't worry if you haven't worked before. Note that there are restrictions on working in health care, child care or primary or secondary education. Also, if you're hoping to work in Montreal or surrounds you may need French language experience.
InterExchange provides support during the pre-departure phase, most importantly to help demystify the work permit process. Once you arrive in Canada you are invited to attend a brief info session at the Toronto or Vancouver office of the InterExchange partner organization, SWAP. If you find yourself in another part of the country you are encouraged to contact SWAP through email or phone for support. SWAP also maintains an online jobs database and will provide newsletter and social media updates about featured jobs and events around the country.
When your program ends you will have access to InterExchange alumni resources including our Language Partner Program, events and the InterExchange Foundation Alumni Grant.
If you're ready to go, please complete the InterExchange application and make a $250 deposit towards the program fee. Our application is easy and can be completed with a few simple online forms and uploads. Sign Up.
We accept applications for our Work & Travel Canada program on a rolling basis and you can start almost any week throughout the year. We are now accepting applications for 2017. Once you sign up with InterExchange, the process to apply through International Experience Canada can take several weeks so we recommend preparing well in advance.
U.S. citizens who wish to participate on the International Experience Canada (IEC) - Travel and Work program must come through a Recognized Organization. InterExchange works with the Recognized Organization called SWAP to make this program possible for U.S. citizens. Once you complete your InterExchange application we will inform SWAP of your intention to apply and advise you on the work permit application process through IEC.
After applying through IEC you must await approval to travel, after which you're able to obtain a work permit upon entering Canada. You must have travel medical insurance and support funds before traveling.
This program is meant as a one-year opportunity to experience the country with the ability to work. We are unable to assist with longer term immigration. However, it is possible to participate on the program two times if you re-apply.
Prior to traveling, InterExchange provides guidance with respect to the work permit application process and your preparations for traveling. We also provide alumni resources upon your return. While in Canada, SWAP is available to provide guidance for finding jobs, housing, and logistics including obtaining your Social Insurance Number (SIN), getting around, and finding activities in your area.
Most travelers have already planned accommodation or booked hostels independently for the early part of the program. If you prefer, we can arrange your initial hostel accommodation for you.
If you are proactive, professional, and open to various types of jobs (rather than aiming for one specific position), you can find a job quickly. There are many jobs available and most of our participants land a position within their first or second week in Canada.
It's possible to secure work independently prior to arriving in Canada, but we don't organize job placements in advance.
The minimum wage in Canada depends on the province and generally ranges from $10.20 to $12.50 CAD per hour (with higher pay more often in northern Canada). Service employees (those working in restaurants, bars, etc.) are usually paid lower than minimum wage as tips complete their wages. Generally, Canadians tip 15% or more. Most ski resorts pay close to the minimum wage unless participants are hired for supervising roles. Office wages may be higher than minimum wage. The highest wages tend to be in construction and labor - particularly in Alberta where workers are needed year round.
Yes. You can leave the country and come back during the 12 months your visa is valid.
No. You can stay as long as 12 months, but there's no minimum stay.
You may only participate for a maximum of 12 months. However, you may participate on the program a second time if you enroll again through InterExchange.
Yes, you can study for up to 4 months.
Yes, you may work for the same employer for the duration of your Working Holiday Visa.
You should have access to at least $2,500 CAD and be prepared to show proof of this at the time of applying for your Letter of Introduction.
A room in a shared house or apartment usually costs $400 to $700 CAD per month.
Transit passes generally cost between $80 to $134 CAD per month.
Groceries should cost around $35 to $60 CAD per month.
I know if I need anything I can send a quick email and be assisted right away. I feel secure with [InterExchange] staff and am grateful for the extensive information that has been provided. Keirsten
Explore the beauty of Canada and fund your trip with short-term jobs!