International Experience Canada - IEC

Extend Your Stay After IEC Working Holiday – Here Are 5 Ways

Depending on country of citizenship, IEC Working Holiday holders can extend their stay in Canada. This article enlist the options for those looking to extend their stay after expiry of IEC Working Holiday in Canada. 

Repeat Participation in IEC 

If your country has a Youth Mobility Agreement (YMA) with Canada, you can participate in IEC twice. However, certain countries allow you to participate only once through the YMA. In that case, you can participate up to two more times if you apply through IEC Recognized Organizations. 

Further, some countries’ citizens need to wait a year to apply for their second IEC work permit. This rule applies to applicants from Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Mexico, Poland, Slovakia, and Spain. You’ll not be able to stay in Canada after your first permit expires if you are a citizen of the aforementioned countries. 

Secure a Job Offer

If you can impress an employer with your skills, they can help extend your stay by offering you a job. You can then apply for the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or International Mobility Program with a valid job offer. This process can be challenging, but it is a viable option if you meet the requirements. 

Getting a work permit can be difficult because your employer may need to do a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). Within this, your employer needs to advertise the position and evidence that there is no Canadian available to fill this position.

Change to a Visitor Status 

You can extend your stay for up to six months by changing to visitor status. Ensure you apply for a visitor record at least 30 days before your work permit expires. However, after that, you’ll not be able to work in Canada as a visitor. This option doesn’t apply to citizens of countries who do not require visa to visit Canada.


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Apply for Permanent Residency 

The IEC work permit is a temporary status in Canada. However, if you wish to stay in Canada permanently, below are your options: 

Economic immigration

With sufficient job experience, post-secondary education and language proficiency, you can apply under Express Entry or the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). Moreover, you’ll get additional points if you have at least 12 months of skilled work experience in Canada on your IEC work visa. Remember that Quebec has a separate immigration system for workers. 

Family Sponsorship 

If you have found a partner that is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, then your partner can sponsor you. The two of you must be married or meet the common-law or conjugal partners’ requirements to be eligible to sponsor for permanent residency. 

Become a student

If you have a newfound interest or want to learn new skills, apply for a Canadian study permit. You can also work part-time on your study permit. Further, after graduation, get up to 3 years of work permit with a path to permanent residency.


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