Moving to Canada


Delivery timescales

Prohibited and restricted items

Every country has its own rules and regulations surrounding prohibited and restricted items. It’s important to be aware of these prior to the move to avoid any delays.

Canada Border Services Agency control the import of goods into the country. All household goods will undergo a thorough inspection upon arrival. It’s important to declare all animal, plant and food items, or related products, as failure to do so is likely to result in a fine and a delay to your move – such items are seen as a potential threat to the ecosystem and taken very seriously. Of course, even items which have been declared are likely to undergo further inspection so please bear in mind that this could also delay clearance.

We can provide further information if you require it – please get in touch and we’ll be happy to advise.


Canada, being the second largest country in the world, is a popular destination for immigrants from all backgrounds and has one of the highest per capita immigration rates globally. A bilingual country, Canadian nationals speak both Canadian English and Canadian French and almost all citizens have access to high-quality health care, making Canada an attractive emigration destination. In this article we’ll have a look at some of the things you’ll need to know if you’re considering moving to Canada.

There are visas available for those wishing to emigrate to Canada, the most common being the Skilled Workers and Professionals Visa. This visa proves that you are an asset to the country and looks at a number of criteria such as age and occupation. Each visa application is scored based upon these conditions and the score needed for entry is 67 points. There are other visas available for those who don’t meet the Skilled Workers and Professionals Visa like the Family Visa for those joining a spouse or family member, and visas for entrepreneurs and investors.

Once you have successfully applied for a visa and are finally ready to make the move to Canada there are a number of documents you will need available before you cross the border. These include common travel documents such as a valid passport and visa. You will also need detailed lists of all of the personal and household items you are travelling with, along with a detailed list of items that are arriving later including their monetary value. For a full list of the documents required, take a look at the Canadian Government’s website.

You will also need to prove that you can support yourself and any dependants moving with you to Canada by showing proof of funds. In addition, there is a medical examination that must be passed before you are allowed into the country.

Many expats also warn about the feelings that those who emigrate often experience after moving to a new country. Typically described as ‘Culture Shock’, adapting to life within a new culture can be tough – there are usually four stages to acclimatising yourself to a new culture.

The first stage is one of happiness and excitement at being in a new country. You feel as if you have left your old problems and stresses behind and are full of high hopes and expectations. During this stage you tend to focus on the similarities between the new culture and the one you are from.

The second stage finds people feeling confused, frustrated and disillusioned. Tending to focus on the differences between their new country and the country they moved from, people will sometimes feel lonely and miss friends and family. Mood swings are also common during this stage of the culture shock process.

The third stage is one of recovery and gradual adjustment where expats will begin to feel more in control of their situation. This often happens once people become more involved in the community and start to make new friends. You will also begin to understand more about the country you are now living in and what you must do to achieve the goals you set out with.

The fourth and final stage of culture shock is acceptance. Once you have made new friends and understand more about your new home country, you will feel more comfortable with your life there. At this stage, people find themselves to be content and happy with the decision they made to move abroad. There are a number of services available in Canada designed specifically to help immigrants adapt to their new life.

Packing for a move overseas can be a stressful part of the process and quite daunting for some. International shipping of your belongings can take around three to four months so you will be without some items for a while! Therefore it is essential that you prioritise the items you need and the ones you can manage without. You are often allowed an air shipment that arrives within 1-2 months but this can also be delayed.

You will have valuable items including; important documents, jewellery, laptops, medicines, money etc. that you need to pack in your carry-on luggage for the plane. Make sure these don’t get boxed up with the rest of your belongings!

Things to pack in your luggage are items that you will need as soon as you arrive. Clothes, toys and books if you are moving with children and anything else that is essential to everyday life in your new home.

For more information about moving to Canada, simply get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.
E: enquiries@squab.co.uk T: 0845 4680 160

Don’t forget to take a look at our handy checklist as a guide to help with organising your move. There’s additional space for you to add your own notes, as every move is different.


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