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  • Its really not that bad

    By Yesyen

    Hi Desis,

    I am writing this article to all new immigrants and all those who intend to migrate. I feel obligated to pen my thoughts here as I received enormous information about canada via this website.

    Now I guess its my turn to give back in a small way to all fellow desis my first hand experiences after landing in canada. I landed with my wife and 1 yr old daughter at Pearson International Aiport, Ontario on October 04, 2008. The whole process of immigration took about an hour right from the visa stamping to the formalities at the Canadian Border Security Agency. The only thing I suggest at this juncture is try to have minimum cabin baggage especially when you are having toddlers who need to be carried as you would have to walk about 5 - 7 minutes from the aircraft to the immigration counter.

    After the immigration, you will have a counter for newcomers where you will be given your health insurance forms, child tax benefit forms and other brochures giving details of important telephone numbers and also a bus route map.

    Have all your documents in hand and keep ready the 2 copies of the goods you are carrying and goods to follow with you to avoid any delays.

    I had booked a room in a guest house in Scarborough suggested by one of the fellow desis. All througout you will meet a handful of immigrants at all points. If you are coming from Dubai, at no point will you feel you have come to a diffeent land.

    On the first working day, I got my SIN at the service center situated on the ground floor in Scarborough Town Center. Once you enter the room, you will have to go from the back between the black line demarcation ropes and register at the counter. Your name will be called over the public addressing system and you will be allowed to enter a secure area where the process will take place. You will be given your SIN on a temporary paper and the card would arrive to you in 15 working days. The process took about 30 minutes. The following day was utilized to apply for my health card. Please take proof of your residence, passport, landing paper and health forms for all your family members. If you are a new immigrant and are going to return in a few weeks, I suggest you apply for your temporary drivers license that is G1 and take it as proof of residence.

    By proof of residence, I understand that they need proof that you are staying in Ontario to be covered by the provincial health plan.

    The drivers license takes about half a day to a full day. At the counter you are given a token number where you really have to wait for somtime before you are called in and then they ask you to give a written test immediately. You can take a driving book to help you understand the rules from the vending machine by putting in CDN $ 15. The book is quite thick. It could take you 30 minutes to go through it. after which you could go ahead for your written which hardly takes time. If you are coming from the middle east of a left hand drive country, taking the test shouldnt be a hassle.

    Again you are given a token number to wait to get a date for your permanent license. I got a date one month from now. But from other sources, I came to know that within 10-15 days you could get the permanenet G2 license through a driving instructor if you request them.

    Job market is good for any new immigrant who initially is looking to survive. There are lot of handy jobs around if survival is your key.I can guarante you will not starve here. Once you are confortable with your neighborhood and know the place you can start looking in your field and upgrading yourself. I came to know that here the key is NETWORKING.word of mouth really works here.

    Rest the stores are good.Compared to the middle east, the things are just a little expensive. and I must warn you, the bus services are very very confusing. If you know anyone who is well acquainted with the routes and the numbers, grab the oppurtunity, dont miss it. From what I know, all buses travel in L shape. If you buy a ticket, it is valid all over the plave except you can use it to return in the same direction.

    There is a tamil grocery shop too nearby. and also if you are a muslim, there shouldnt be any problem for halal food as there are atleast 1 in every neighborhood in Scarborough.

    Alright guys, I think for now this is all I know too. Hope this helps you the way tis site helped me.
    Take care and dont worry you have made the right choice.


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