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Advice for Moving to Canada?

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Hello :D

I'm an American citizen living in Singapore and have applied to a number of Canadian schools for the upcoming year. I have one acceptance and one recommendation for acceptance so far, so it's very likely I will be moving now.

I have so many questions about the process and life in Canada, I thought maybe Canadian grads or citizens might be able to help!

I would be moving with my partner, under the understanding that we can apply for a dependent's pass as being in a common-law relationship. We have proof of living together for over two years, shared bank accounts and could request statements from friends and family if necessary, so proof isn't much of a concern, but how do I get this visa? The closest airport is actually in the US, and as such we will be crossing into Canada by land. More than likely, we'll need to cross at least twice, as I'll be crossing over back to my home state to pick up some of my things as well. I've heard that American citizens can get their student visas at the border, but is this possible is you are bringing a dependent who is not American? Also, would my partner legally be able to look for work after arrival?

As for the country itself, are there any recommendations for banks in Ontario? I've heard CIBC and President's Choice have good student accounts. Are the ATMs widely available for those (well, CIBC only, as President's Choice apparently uses CIBC ATMs)?

Does anyone have any recommendations for sites to find apartments? We'll need to find something asap after arrival so we don't blow all our savings on hotels!

Any popular cell phone companies in Ontario that offer basic plans? We don't have smart phones and just need the most basic call/text plans.

And finally, any other advice? It's going to be very confusing for a while between Canada, the US and Singapore, so any advice for how to settle down and find necessary things would be much appreciated :)

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I have so many questions about the process and life in Canada, I thought maybe Canadian grads or citizens might be able to help!

I was born in Ontario, but grew up in British Columbia (yay west coast!) But I am currently back in Ontario for grad school.

I would be moving with my partner, under the understanding that we can apply for a dependent's pass as being in a common-law relationship. We have proof of living together for over two years, shared bank accounts and could request statements from friends and family if necessary, so proof isn't much of a concern, but how do I get this visa? The closest airport is actually in the US, and as such we will be crossing into Canada by land. More than likely, we'll need to cross at least twice, as I'll be crossing over back to my home state to pick up some of my things as well. I've heard that American citizens can get their student visas at the border, but is this possible is you are bringing a dependent who is not American? Also, would my partner legally be able to look for work after arrival?

Sorry, I won't be able to help you here, but maybe the school's international student office could. I'm in a similar situation since I am probably going to go to the US for a PhD program and my wife (who isn't a student but is Canadian) will be going with me. We've done a lot of research to figure out how she will be able to come into the US and work as well. Looks like we're going to need J-1 status. Anyways, I now realise I know more about US visas than Canadian ones!

As for the country itself, are there any recommendations for banks in Ontario? I've heard CIBC and President's Choice have good student accounts. Are the ATMs widely available for those (well, CIBC only, as President's Choice apparently uses CIBC ATMs)?

The major banks in Canada (and Ontario) are: TD Canada Trust, BMO (Bank of Montreal), CIBC, Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), and HSBC (Hong Kong-Shanghai Bank of Canada). These banks have branches and ATMs pretty much all over the country. It would be worthwhile to check out the city you're moving to and make sure though. I've never banked with CIBC and HSBC before. I would avoid President's Choice though, since they don't really have any offices, and my friend who uses them complains to me that although CIBC branches are supposed to serve PC customers, they don't really like doing so. I found that RBC has pretty high fees so I closed my account with them a long time ago (they might be more competitive now though).

My favourite is BMO because they have great student account options. They offer a Mastercard with SPC (Student Price Card, gets you discounts at many places including the department store Zellers [kinda like Target]) and the ability to collect Air Miles, for free! You can also choose to get 0.5% cash back instead of Air Miles too.

However, the BEST thing, in my opinion, about BMO is their "banking plan" paradigm. You pay for ONE banking plan that serves all your accounts. The fees are waived if you meet some minimum deposit in your "main account". This is great for my wife and I since we just need to keep a minimum deposit in one joint account and all our personal and joint account have the same benefits. The minimums are a bit higher than TD (where I also hold an account) but cheaper overall because you would have to keep a minimum in ALL your accounts at TD to get the same benefits. For comparison, the best plan at BMO is $5000 minimum total while the best plan at TD is $3000 minimum per account for ALL accounts.

Does anyone have any recommendations for sites to find apartments? We'll need to find something asap after arrival so we don't blow all our savings on hotels!

Popular websites in Ontario/Canada are kijiji (www.kijiji.ca) and Craigslist. When I moved to Ontario, another student recommended rental from the landlord company Homestead (http://www.homestead.ca/). They have properties all over Ontario and they are a large and reputable landlord. Most of their places are pretty good but they do have some dumps too. However, when looking at apartments, they had a very low rate of dumps compared to other places we looked at. You can also apply for places online, which is nice!

Some useful things you might want to know about the Ontario Tenant Act:

(1) Landlords cannot ask for any type of deposit, other than "Last month's rent" (LMR). So no damage deposit, no security deposit, none of that. You also get interest earned on the LMR each year.

(2) Landlords are not allowed to have a "no pets policy". Any "no pets" policy you sign is considered voided by the Tenant Act. Pets can only be removed if they are disturbing other tenants. Of course, it's better to not get in a fight about this and if pets are important to you, it's probably best to avoid places with these policies.

(3) Generally leases are signed for 1 year and then they are on a month-to-month basis. Tenants give their landlords minimum 2 MONTHS notice before vacating, so if you want a place for, say, Sept 1, you should be applying for places on July 1. Of course, it may also be possible to find a place when you arrive!

Finally, depending on the city, if you are moving to a place with a high student population, I'd really recommend checking it out in person before signing for it, because sometimes landlords take advantage of the lower standards of students. It might not be possible due to your current location, but if you could visit the city 2 months before you plan to move and actually pick out a place, it would be even better! Or maybe ask someone you may know (or get to know) in the city to check for you.

Any popular cell phone companies in Ontario that offer basic plans? We don't have smart phones and just need the most basic call/text plans.

The big three cell companies are Rogers, Bell, and Telus. They have smaller, cheaper "child companies": Fido, Solo, and Koodo, respectively. The big companies generally have large, expensive plans ($50+ per month) and lots of smart phones. The child companies have cheaper plans for just talk and text. Fido has a family plan where two people can share one phone account. I currently use a $25 Solo plan with 100 minutes on weekdays (but they have upgraded this to unlimited), unlimited texting in Canada, and I pay an extra $10/month for call display and voicemail. I signed on a two year contract and got my phone for free. Another big company is Virgin Mobile. In addition, there are some newer and very cheap companies such as Moblicity and WIND mobile (with service the level of the big 3 and prices of their child companies!). Unfortunately, they are new so their network coverage is smaller and may not even serve your city! But do check it out.

And finally, any other advice? It's going to be very confusing for a while between Canada, the US and Singapore, so any advice for how to settle down and find necessary things would be much appreciated :)

Ontario Harmonized Sales Tax is 13%. The basic utilities are heat, water, and hydro (electricity) so if it's not included then expect to pay more for this. My rent includes the first two so I don't know how much they cost but our electricity bill is about $30/month. I say this because when looking at places in the US, I notice that they have trash listed sometimes too. This is taken care of by the city in most places here.

I'm not sure what else you mean about finding necessary things (so ask more if you'd like!) but here are some things that may help you "fit in" more, maybe!

Politics: The current Prime Minister is Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC; which many may describe as a centre-right party). The current opposition is the New Democratic Party (NDP), which is a leftist party. The former opposition (they lost a huge number of seats in the last election to the NDP and CPC) was the Liberal Party of Canada, which could be described as a centre-left party. The CPC has been in power since 2006 (with a minority government) and has had a majority government since 2011. Before that, the Liberals were in power from 1993-2006. The NDP has never been in power (in fact this government has a record number of NDP seats). So now you've got a primer in case people around you start talking about our government!

Money: We have $1 and $2 coins, nicknamed the "loonie" and "twoonie" (also "toonie") respectively. Our bills are coloured and come in $5 (blue), $10 (purple), $20 (green), $50 (red), and $100 (brown) denominations usually.

More fun things: One thing that almost all Canadians love is the coffee and donut chain, Tim Hortons. Some parts of the US have them now so maybe you already know this! But to help you get talking with the locals, here are some useful food related vocabulary (not all Tim Hortons related):

Timbits = donut holes from Tim Hortons

Double-double = a coffee with 2 creams and 2 sugar (you can also order a tea double-double though) from Tim Hortons

Timmies, Tim's, Timmy Ho's = Tim Hortons

Poutine = delicious french fries with cheese curds (you know these are real if they squeak when you bite into them), covered in gravy

Smarties = Candied covered chocolates (like M&Ms) -- Smarties in the US are called "Rockets" in Canada

Beaver Tails = fried flat piece of dough, sprinkled with cinnamon and brown sugar usually; similar to "Elephant ears" or churros. Very popular in Ottawa.

Homo Milk = homogenized whole milk, equivalent to 3.25% fat milk.

(probably lots more but these come to mind first!)

And finally, the Ontario NHL hockey teams are the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Ottawa Senators. Be warned that pretty much everyone who isn't from Toronto will hate the Maple Leafs though. I'd recommend the Vancouver Canucks :P

Feel free to ask any other questions :)

Edited by TakeruK

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Wow, TakeruK, thank you SO MUCH! This is all invaluable information and an absolutely huge help.

I'll look up plans for BMO, TD and CBIC, after a bit more looking around it seems like there are quite a few complaints about President's Choice. We're looking for a low minimum balance account, which it seems pretty much everywhere offers for student accounts.

That's a lot of really great information for housing too, just what I was looking for! I am slightly concerned about trying to find a place after arrival, as I know even in the States many apartments only have spaces open up after a few months of waiting, but I'm equally worried about signing up for a property and discovering the area, amenities, building or apartment itself isn't up to snuff. Unfortunately the friends and family who could go out scouting for me are about 4 hours away from my closest possible school and that's quite a big commitment to ask of them. I think I'll ask my POI's current grad students and the international student organization on campus for recommendations and follow those to hopefully find a nice place to book in advance. Worst case, we'll move after the first year :P We don't have any pets so that shouldn't be an issue, but the deposit information was especially useful- I've had rental agreements in both the US and Singapore but it seems quite different up farther North, very renter friendly! I've noticed that it does seem more common in the apartments I've looked at online to include several utilities as well, that's a nice bonus.

Your sort of talk/text plan sounds just right, affordable and all the use we'll need. I'll take a look first at the child companies!

Fortunately my home State is pretty far up North as well and I've had the opportunity to visit Canada a few times through the years, so I've got the money and food outlets down pretty well. I think I'll just need to ask students at my prospective schools for more local favorites (or should I say favourites?)

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer all my questions and give your own impressions, always better to have a recommendation than just have a list of companies!

As for other questions, is there anything I need to see or experience while I'm living there? I've been to Niagara a few times but haven't really explored far past it. Any cool sites or recommended stops in the country- really anything within about a day's drive of Ontario you like?

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I see you're accepted to U Windsor, so just to let you know: TD's probably your best option if you go there, since the bank is about five minutes down the street from campus, and the student account I had from them had no fees/minimum balance. Other banks are accessible, but mostly downtown or by the grocery plaza (25 - 40 minute walk). Other notes I'd make is that if you go there, you should be able to find a place around the university to rent fairly cheap/fast, and the cost of living is not very high. Job market is awful if you're expecting to work outside of school, though. Just factors I'd want to know about, I think!

TakeruK covered a lot, but feel free to message me if you settle on U Windsor. I went there for undergrad and my MA. :)

Ontario itself is pretty big. Perspective: both one of my school friends from Windsor and I come from northern Ontario. We live more than 15 hours apart by car. But to be honest, it depends on the kind of person you are, re: where you might like visiting. If you dig nature/camping, cities, major tourist attractions, certain sports/activities -- it definitely factors in. If I were to go anywhere within a day of Windsor, I'd head to Toronto, Ottawa, or Montreal, as I love urban exploring and they all have a lot to offer in different ways.

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I don't have much to add to this conversation, but I would definitely recommend Koodo as far as cell-phone companies go. I was with them for a year and it's very inexpensive, and they are really helpful. The only reason I switched to Telus was because I wanted a smartphone. I regret switching. I have basically the same plan I had with Koodo (plus data) and it costs me twice as much.

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Hello :D

I'm an American citizen living in Singapore and have applied to a number of Canadian schools for the upcoming year. I have one acceptance and one recommendation for acceptance so far, so it's very likely I will be moving now.

I have so many questions about the process and life in Canada, I thought maybe Canadian grads or citizens might be able to help!

I would be moving with my partner, under the understanding that we can apply for a dependent's pass as being in a common-law relationship. We have proof of living together for over two years, shared bank accounts and could request statements from friends and family if necessary, so proof isn't much of a concern, but how do I get this visa? The closest airport is actually in the US, and as such we will be crossing into Canada by land. More than likely, we'll need to cross at least twice, as I'll be crossing over back to my home state to pick up some of my things as well. I've heard that American citizens can get their student visas at the border, but is this possible is you are bringing a dependent who is not American? Also, would my partner legally be able to look for work after arrival?

As for the country itself, are there any recommendations for banks in Ontario? I've heard CIBC and President's Choice have good student accounts. Are the ATMs widely available for those (well, CIBC only, as President's Choice apparently uses CIBC ATMs)?

Does anyone have any recommendations for sites to find apartments? We'll need to find something asap after arrival so we don't blow all our savings on hotels!

Any popular cell phone companies in Ontario that offer basic plans? We don't have smart phones and just need the most basic call/text plans.

And finally, any other advice? It's going to be very confusing for a while between Canada, the US and Singapore, so any advice for how to settle down and find necessary things would be much appreciated :)

TakeruK really nailed most of your concerns, so I'll just chime in with a couple.

I'm a Canadian, planning to attend grad school here in Ontario. I have experience acquiring a live/work visa when I've been in the States for stretches of time. I was able to do ALL of my visa stuff on line and via the post and the process was STILL incredibly stressful; I can't imagine trying to "just pick up" the visa at the border! If at all possible, I would arrange to have it all in hand prior to arriving in the States; this means a lot of processing and wait times, but for me it would be worth it, if it's possible.

With regards to criss-crossing the U.S. border prior to settling, my advice is ensure that you have your letter of admission and return tickets in hand so that the people at the border can confirm your plans. It appears to me that the border employees are encouraged to assume that you will stay/squat in a given country unless you can indicate otherwise; again, just my experience.

As TakeruK suggested, I would affirm that you should check-in with your international student centre. I imagine that they will be familiar with the perils of your situation and/or they will be able to refer you accordingly. I think that it will make a large difference if you can talk to someone who can tell you what typical obstacles have emerged for other students, so that you can navigate accordingly and not have to find out the hard way!

For banking: I'm with Royal Bank of Canada. They gave me a great rate for a Student line of credit, as I wasn't eligible for Government loans. I have all my accounts with them and they reward me for that loyalty (I even opened an RRSP with them when I was 22, which made me feel like a super-adult!). However, I live in Toronto, so you can find most banks within reach around here. I would probably go with JElliot's advice and go with TD, if you are in fact headed to U Windsor.

For phone: I have been with Telus for some time and find that their coverage across Ontario is quite good (@JElliot, I'm also from Northern Ontario originally - needed to get a phone that would work up there so I can get work done when I visit!). However, my phone is treated like the house land line, so it has lots of minutes and long-distance frills which amount to more than $50/month. My partner has a President's Choice phone to supplement. He picks up a $25 phone card every 2 months (however, be warned: you can't get these cards just anywhere, luckily, we live near a grocery store that carries a lot of PC products).

For renting: I know that craig's list and kijiji are kind of go-to, but I HATED using them when I was cross-city apartment-hunting. I prefer viewit.ca, they have lots of customizable options and pictures and I've never seen anything "scammy". Also, inquire about services through your university, some institutions have programs to hook up students.

As far as living in Canada goes, for practical advice, I would encourage you to buy ANY electronics/books that you will need BEFORE moving here. The price difference between Canada and the US for these consumer goods is ridiculous and frustrating. As well, booze and food is pricer; you will likely have to adjust your budget. On the plus side, our beer and chocolates are better, and we have ketchup chips!

Welcome eh?

Also, Go Leafs Go! :P

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I'm also in Ontario (originally from BC), and everyone has pretty much covered everything I'd want to say. So, rather than add more to the conversation at this point, I'll just simply say *cough*-Canucks-*cough* and leave it at that. :D

Oh, and Canada is rad. Just sayin'.

Edited by Andsowego

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Glad to help! :) Unfortunately you can drive for a day from most places in Ontario and still end up in Ontario (provided that you don't head towards the US!).

My wife and I drove from Vancouver to eastern Ontario when we moved here. It took 4 days of driving for ~8 hours to get to Manitoba (4 provinces: BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba). We thought "yay, almost there!" But when we checked our driving schedule, it was actually another ~20 hours of driving before we actually made it to Toronto (and then we did a detour to Niagara Falls before arriving at our destination). Due to the shape, I think the distance from the western-most point of Ontario the eastern-most point is about the same as the distance across the four western provinces mentioned above! Google map says this is ~2400km = 31 hours if you drive along Ontario's southern shore (the slow scenic route that we took since we wanted to "drive across (most of) Canada").

If you want more info on what kind of fees/deposits are allowed (not many), see an unofficial FAQ here: http://www.ontariotenants.ca/law/law.phtml. The amount that your rent may increase each year is also limited by law (scaled according to inflation) Last year it was 0.6% but it was generally around 2-3% in previous years.

I can only give recommendation on touristy/museumy things since that's what I enjoy! Toronto is Ontario's capital so there are plenty of things like the Royal Ontario Museum, and the Art Gallery of Ontario if you are into that stuff. It could also be worth seeing the CN Tower. Ottawa has most of the national museums (being the captial and all) and in the summer, you can see a Changing of the Guard style ceremony at the Parliament. Just outside of Ottawa is also the "Diefenbunker", a Cold War era bunker built to protect our Government in case of a Soviet missile attack. It's pretty eerie, especially when the guide mentions things such as the blast doors were built to withstand both a missile as well as ordinary (radioactive) citizens trying to get in unauthorized!

For getting around between cities, other than driving, there is the train (VIA Rail) and the major bus companies are Greyhound, Coach Canada, and Megabus. VIA Rail is a bit nicer and more comfortable than the buses but generally the prices can be 2-3 times more and they are not 2-3 times nicer! Greyhound and Coach Canada are the big bus companies but they run different routes so sometimes their trip planner will give you a very roundabout trip! However, Megabus is probably the cheapest/best one. It's a discount bus company run by Coach Canada and you only buy tickets online. They started in the UK, then expanded to US before coming to Canada so you might already know about it. I was pretty happy to be able to snag a $1 bus fare to Toronto one time (normally I pay ~$15 with them, ~$30 with Coach Canada and ~$60+ for the train). Of course, driving is much more flexible, but if you want to fly somewhere, you pretty much have to get to Toronto International Airport and flying there from a local airport is usually crazy expensive.

Edited by TakeruK

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Hi PTPS,

I'm living in Singapore and is waiting out for UBC's reply to my master's of mechanical engineering application.

To all contributors,

This is a great thread for prospective students moving to Canada. Keep the information flowing.

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I see you're accepted to U Windsor, so just to let you know: TD's probably your best option if you go there...

TakeruK covered a lot, but feel free to message me if you settle on U Windsor. I went there for undergrad and my MA. :)

Thank you for the advice, all very helpful! I'll definitely take you up on messaging, I'm at work at the moment and don't have much time but I do have a few Windsor specific questions if you don't mind!

I don't have much to add to this conversation, but I would definitely recommend Koodo as far as cell-phone companies go. I was with them for a year and it's very inexpensive, and they are really helpful. The only reason I switched to Telus was because I wanted a smartphone. I regret switching. I have basically the same plan I had with Koodo (plus data) and it costs me twice as much.

Ahaha, I know I'm, repeating the thanks a ton but everyone's information really is incredibly helpful, so thank you as well! I'll put Koodo at the top of my list to check out.

TakeruK really nailed most of your concerns, so I'll just chime in with a couple. I'm a Canadian, planning to attend grad school here in Ontario. I have experience acquiring a live/work visa when I've been in the States for stretches of time. I was able to do ALL of my visa stuff on line and via the post and the process was STILL incredibly stressful...

For banking: I'm with Royal Bank of Canada. They gave me a great rate for a Student line of credit, as I wasn't eligible for Government loans...

For phone: I have been with Telus for some time and find that their coverage across Ontario is quite good (@JElliot, I'm also from Northern Ontario originally - needed to get a phone that would work up there so I can get work done when I visit!). However, my phone is treated like the house land line, so it has lots of minutes and long-distance frills which amount to more than $50/month...

For renting: I know that craig's list and kijiji are kind of go-to, but I HATED using them when I was cross-city apartment-hunting. I prefer viewit.ca, they have lots of customizable options and pictures and I've never seen anything "scammy".

I think I definitely will apply for the visa online after all, even if I hear advice that I can get it at the border that doesn't take into account that problems could happen, and I'm not willing to go through a sudden unexpected issue just to save a bit of time, especially if it's concerning my future. Your advice was very good.

I'll check out Royal Bank of Canada as well. I'm hoping to receive enough funding to supplement my current savings and my partner hopefully finding work to not take out loans, but I'd still like to investigate some options just in case, although I'm not sure I'm eligible as a non-citizen.

I think TelUs may be a good option for my partner, who will need to make frequent long-distance calls back home to talk to family and friends. Having all the comparisons on companies here is fantastic!

Viewit looks like a great option too, thank you for the resource!

If you want more info on what kind of fees/deposits are allowed (not many), see an unofficial FAQ here: http://www.ontariotenants.ca/law/law.phtml. The amount that your rent may increase each year is also limited by law (scaled according to inflation) Last year it was 0.6% but it was generally around 2-3% in previous years....

I can only give recommendation on touristy/museumy things...

For getting around between cities, other than driving, there is the train (VIA Rail) and the major bus companies are Greyhound, Coach Canada, and Megabus...

Again a lot of great information. I've read through the rental laws on that page and think I've got a better idea of the sort of contract I should be looking out for. Really fantastic help all around.

I'll check out your exploration recommendations too :D I'm pretty interested in the museum-esque stops as well!

And thank you for the transport options! I actually took Megabus once right before coming to Singapore to get to a conference in Chicago, so I'm fairly familiar with it and did like the service as well, it's good to hear it's an option in Canada too!

Whew, I hope I didn't miss anyone out of the thanks! This has all been a huge help, I've got the thread bookmarked and I'm sure I'll reference it frequently. And like civicblade said, any additional contributions would definitely be welcome!

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Looks like things are pretty well covered. You guys forgot Scotiabank though. Although I will say that TD pretty much beats all other banks from what I've seen (and I'm not even with them, I'm with Scotiabank)

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I have a challenge for anyone who thinks they can help. I'm moving to Canada permanently, am a USA citizen, and I have heard vague comments around the interwebs that all the years I worked to maintain a good credit rating + driving record (for insurance)... will go *poof* once I become a permanent resident. I know I know, two entirely different countries, but with the special relationship we share (biggest trading partners, and ability to drive in/out of the country on native license) I would hope there is something that could be done to prevent me from being a 16 year old again with my history :/

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I have a challenge for anyone who thinks they can help. I'm moving to Canada permanently, am a USA citizen, and I have heard vague comments around the interwebs that all the years I worked to maintain a good credit rating + driving record (for insurance)... will go *poof* once I become a permanent resident. I know I know, two entirely different countries, but with the special relationship we share (biggest trading partners, and ability to drive in/out of the country on native license) I would hope there is something that could be done to prevent me from being a 16 year old again with my history :/

I don't think credit is specifically a country-to-country thing. Same with driving records. I know somebody who couldn't rent a car in the States because of a bad driving record in England. I don't have any proof or evidence, just my gut feeling that what you've heard doesn't sound quite right.

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I have a challenge for anyone who thinks they can help. I'm moving to Canada permanently, am a USA citizen, and I have heard vague comments around the interwebs that all the years I worked to maintain a good credit rating + driving record (for insurance)... will go *poof* once I become a permanent resident. I know I know, two entirely different countries, but with the special relationship we share (biggest trading partners, and ability to drive in/out of the country on native license) I would hope there is something that could be done to prevent me from being a 16 year old again with my history :/

The first thing you'll need to do, is look at insurance regulations in the specific province you're moving to (each province is different). For example, in the province of BC, licensing and auto insurance is all through one government regulatory body (ICBC), but in the province of Ontario, auto insurance is privatized and you can select your rates/plan from whatever company you choose (e.g., Allstate, or others).

edited to add: I see that all your university options are in Ontario, so you should start here http://www.ontario.c...dents/index.htm to find out about licensing (which IS done provincially), but when it comes to insuring a vehicle, your choices are private (Allstate et al).

Edited by Andsowego

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A Canadian friend who is in the US for school said that she had to start all over with her credit rating. So it might be the same for US citizens moving to Canada.

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