How Pre-Arrival Services Help Immigrants to Canada Even Before They Arrive

Planning for Canada
Published: July 2, 2024

Planning for Canada Team

This article shares the impactful story of the Planning for Canada (PfC) pre-arrival Program.

Funded by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), PfC has benefited more than 65,000 immigrants from 111 countries since 2007.

Today, almost 25% of Canadians are foreign-born immigrants (Census 2021). It’s important that newcomers have access to support and services to ensure their personal and economic success.

Immigrants to Canada can benefit from an extensive immigrant-serving settlement sector, including pre-arrival services – or services available before the immigrants arrive in Canada.

Register with Planning for Canada!

 Pre-arrival services are pivotal to help you become aware of the expectations, challenges and opportunities you will have in your new home – Canada.

Available to immigrants approved for permanent residence, pre-arrival services offer a wide variety of guidance and support, such as:

  • Assessing the needs of immigrants and connecting newcomers to relevant supports pre- and post-arrival;
  • Providing accurate and up-to-date information on life and work in Canada;
  • Equipping immigrants with the skills and knowledge needed to enter Canada’s labour market;
  • Facilitating connections to new communities.

Pre-arrival services are diverse and high-quality, yet many immigrants are unaware of these services.

Learn more about free IRCC-funded pre-arrival services at One of these services is the Planning for Canada Program.

Planning for Canada: Supporting Immigrants Pre-Arrival

Planning for Canada is a transparent program that gives you a real picture of what life in Canada would be like when you first arrive. It also helps you create a to-do list of what you need to focus on when you first arrive.” - said Nithya, an immigrant from India who recently took part in the Planning for Canada (PfC) Program.

Get more tips from PfC alumni on our YouTube channel.

PfC supports skilled workers, family-class immigrants, and Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP) candidates with trustworthy information about life and employment in Canada. This information will help immigrants make informed decisions that will result in a smoother immigration journey.

Our facilitators, who deliver PfC services and provide guidance to our clients, emphasize the importance of PfC-tailored support: “Immigrants receive reliable and precise information about settlement and employment in general and in particular to their situation. At times, one cannot ask certain questions to people known to them due to fear of judgement and can't rely on Google for answers. A pre-arrival service like ours breaks both barriers and provides apt answers.”

Our free pre-arrival services are offered globally in a time zone convenient for you. We provide services in English and French, while some support is also available in Tagalog, Hindi and Punjabi. Some services are offered in person, while others are live virtual or self-directed, such as:

  • The Immigrant Workshop: Either virtually (worldwide) or in person (in India and the Philippines), PfC’s Immigrant Workshop provides you with accurate and up-to-date information about the key aspects of living and working in Canada.
  • Self-Directed e-Learning: PfC’s new immersive virtual service allows you to explore various topics related to living and working in Canada at your own pace.
  • The One-on-One Personalized Planning Session: One of PfC’s well-trained facilitators will assess your unique needs and assets and help you create a personalized Settlement Plan based on your intended occupation and destination. A facilitator will also connect you with our in-Canada advisors for further personalized guidance and support.
  • The Live Webinars to supplement your learning: Expert guests join PfC to expand on the information provided during the Workshop and One-on-One session. Our webinars are open to anyone!
  • E-Library: PfC has an extensive E-Library of resources that can help you discover important and useful pre-arrival tips, checklists, and recommendations in a flexible, self-paced manner. Some resources are available here.

Register with Planning for Canada!

We encourage you to take advantage of the full range of services listed above. However, time constraints and other commitments prior to your departure to Canada may limit your ability to utilize all available services. Prioritize those that are most essential to your needs and preparations for your move!

“Our job as facilitators is not to paint a rosy picture about Canada, but to provide our clients with realistic and up to date information which is beneficial for them. It ensures that newcomers don’t feel disillusioned when they reach Canada,” shares a PfC facilitator. “In a nutshell, the pre-arrival program assists immigrants to organize and prepare more systematically for their new journey and to arrive with confidence in Canada,” adds another team member.

The PfC team is happy to assist you. Contact us if you have any questions about the services or the registration process.

Register Now!

If you have been approved as an economic or family-class immigrant or qualified through the Atlantic Immigration Program, we invite you to register now for PfC services!

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