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  1. 11 points
    Phew, we've been in Halifax for almost 3 weeks now. I think it's time for the landing story? Ok. Our trip started off with heart attack material - our youngest son's passport wouldn't clear at the airport. After some investigation it turned out that the passport number on the visa had duplicated one digit which was CIC's error. Really? I checked those visas so many times as I had nightmares about the photos being swapped around, I checked numbers but clearly my OCD went AWOL on this one! Qatar was seriously helpful & phoned CIC to see what could be done. CIC then corrected the number electronically & we were good to go. Just before boarding I was stopped, Qatar wanted to take photos of the passport & visa to make sure we didn't have any issues in Qatar. I have to slot in that my mom-in-law has told us dreadful stories about a kid whose papers were wrong & then couldn't leave that country which was halfway to the USA & that took 6 weeks to sort out. Did I mention that my dear mom-in-law was present at the airport when all of this went down with us? Her eyes lit up as she realized that we might not be going after all. We thought the kids would sleep on the first flight as it was at night, but they only fell asleep at about 2am. We landed in Doha with 1h40mins layover. As we stopped at the end of the line at our gate we were called out by an employee & my heart stopped. My immediate thought was that we will be flying back to SA, but ALAS. Having young kids at that airport turns out to be a blessing as we were simply directed to the priority line, my heart skipped a few beats but all was good. Families with young kids are also allowed to board first. Montreal was our first point of entry into Canada so we did our landing there which didn't take long. It was a Sunday afternoon so there weren't many people. I did have a "what the heck have we done" moment at Montreal as it's all French & they weren't very friendly. Mind you, I also don't like working on Sundays! Halifax was next. We were greeted by a group of church people which was very sweet as it was quite late at night. We're staying with friends & they had a feast laid out for us to nibble on & then it was off to bed. A solid eight hour sleep revived us & we immediately slotted into the different time zone. It helps not sleeping much on the plane & landing at night. Ha ha ha. The first week we sorted out our sin numbers, bank accounts, had a look around Halifax to see which areas were nice & then spent hours trying to find a rental in the area we decided on. There were only two & the one was taken. The other was only available for viewing on the 3rd of March. We tried getting a cell phone contract with Bell, but couldn't without a Canadian photo ID of some sort. We ended up getting a prepaid number to start off with. Looks like we still need to shop around for decent cell contracts. The second week was dedicated to job hunting, writing several cover letters and making sure that resume was spot on. We also looked at the school in the area & were very impressed with what we saw. The headmaster & our friends know each other well so we were able to start the process of getting the paperwork done without having our own place yet which was a HUGE blessing. The third week we looked at the rental & the landlord were happy to lease the place to us. We're moving in on 1 April. The kids started school & had a happy 3 days before March break started. Hubby wrote his learners & passed. He phoned the same day to book for a road test which apparently was fully booked until end of April. Luck was on our side again & he could do his road test the very next day due to a cancellation. Need I say that he was sweating & was very relieved that it was over and that he passed. Week three was a good week. I've had two interviews so far & one telephonic interview where I was told that I would need to go in for a physical interview next week. I've got to confirm a time for another interview next week as well. I'm pleased that I'm getting interviews and that the employers are not adverse to hire an immigrant. It does mean though that the salary is below average they say you don't have Canadian experience, BUT I really don't mind. All & all we're loving the friendly people. Our kids have been invited to a birthday party next week. We've been invited for brunch & a hike/ walk on Sunday. It's still early days, but we are very happy so far. This weekend we'll hopefully get our wheels. Insurance is rather tricky, we're busy dealing with several companies that will hopefully take our drivers history into consideration. Our friends insurance company didn't want to insure us driving their cars on SA drivers license, so we're pretty much reliant on them carting us around for now. Our neighbourhood are not in a public transit area. They have been absolutely amazing in helping us with all the frilly stuff that comes with being a new Canadian. Anyway, this is a very condensed version of what has been happening. Feel free to inbox me if you have any questions on any of the stuff that we've been doing
  2. 5 points
    I have a bit of time before I need to go to my next appointment..... so I will ramble for any feeling like a long story: 5 years on and I get sent away to the UK again to take care of company stuff. I have a UK passport, so the company uses me as I can work freely in the UK, and also because I am part of the design team Yip, I have a great Canadian Job now. It's back into a right hand drive manual, it's like I never drove on the right. The left hand finds the gear stick and does all the right things, except I wipe the front windscreen when I indicate, and flash the people infront when I try to squirt the window. (Darn controls are opposite.) It takes some getting used to driving on the narrow windy roads and mega roundabouts. Luckily I know the rules so I do not die, but It's intimidating with all those lanes and the speed and taking the correct exit - especially as google seems to have a delay announcing the exit point a bit late. Or simply just getting confused and saying something completely different - GPS gets lost in tall buildings. I can still zip up and down the gears much to my surprise. Funny, I'm the slowest driver away from the robots in Canada, but the fastest in the UK?! So how darn fast do Canadians pull away you have to ask ???!!! Pommies are as different to Canadians as day is to night - even looks wise. Drivers are probably a little less forgiving and polite here - I managed to get a good five minute bollocking from a hooter from a 3 ton truck because I dared ask to move to his lane in bumper to bumper traffic - if not, it meant I was going to get funneled off to goodness knows where and I was late for a meeting, so I just kinda worked my way into his lane and he refused to give way, so I worked some more - hey, it's a rental with full walk away cover - you want to run in to me... then do it. He did not despite a terminal rage - phew - you can't take me anywhere. The hooting was great, ha,ha , and then I was gone and it was all over - what a waste of rage. As much as Canadians are also aggressive, they will often make a gap - except in Markham. But that's not a rule for UK as further away from London in non rush hour traffic, they can be very accommodating. I never got stuck in a big roundabout going round and round, but sometimes it came close ! The next thing you need to do is unlearn all you techno-Canada words, as everything in the UK is SA techno-speak. So that's a pain, aluminum... aluminium,....set screw...grub screw.....wrench....spanner.... gas..petrol... ; that's ok, my next port of call was SA, so relearning all the lingo was good. After Uk success and surviving the M4, M25 and roundabouts (though the M4,3,25 are not as terrible as the 401) and there are millions of speed cameras and speed averaging areas so apart from the ubiquitous Speed-Beemers , most other people are more sedate. I'm not sure how well the camera systems work - but imagine getting a 100 fines a month. I think they must work as people seem to be more careful of speeds. So, off to SA... ah no longer home sweet home. Not horrible, but not home. JHB is just as nutty as ever. - taxis's and pause streers, or simply ignore streets. But what I did notice is a new generation of people of all races that seem to be kinder and more tolerant of each other - criminals excluded. That was nice. Then to PE where I lived much of my adult life. I studied there, met my awesome wife and had my girls - it was a time of treasures and terrors. Living near the sea with endless beaches was a privileged that never grew old for me. I never wasted a sea/beach day in 25 years. But all things good have to change or come to an end. The bad moved in and we eventually moved out. It was awesome to see old friends, and it was as if I'd never left. (Amazing). The first morning I was there, I took a walk on the beach at about 7am - the sun was in my eyes and I was looking down - a runner approached and called my name, I was completely caught off guard. After 5 years of being away, a few hours into my first morning and I am noticed - what are the chances? Later I went to my favorite biltong spot (the stadium butchery) it's gone from a tiny shop to quite big - good for them success ! And then the girl behind the counter gives me that knowing smile - no fat she says, it's been a long time ! Wow, that's 2 people - i'm infamous ! Driving in Pe is not terrible - taxi's suck and do as they please, the town is busier and the people that live there are concerned about crime and money. There are new street camera's and gizmos to curb crime - all innovative stuff. Some area's are worse than others. Water is dire -PE's under the radar, but day 0 looms for them too. There are tanks and bottles for sale everywhere and companies with trucks watering. And grey water schemes by the zillion. Ever the entrepreneur the South African ! Walking where you had your children, met and loved your wife and enjoyed happiness and heart break is a powerful aphrodisiac - The sensation of acute loss was powerful, not loss for the town and the place so much, but loss of times gone by - younger fitter bodies and little girls with giggles and tricks. Old pets who were the best mates ever. We brought our pets to Canada, but one has since passed. PE is a pretty town and can be an idyllic place to raise children if you can evade crime. Many of my friends are successful with good jobs and good income, some have cottages and other houses. It's the South African way, as it is the Canadian way, everyone has a cottage ! For me, I did not want to be back, but I did feel the pang of loss. Many of my friends expressed regret at not leaving, but that was to be expected. The thought of leaving is easier to digest than actually leaving. If you're going to do it, do it sooner than later. Emigration is hard, and harder still for the older of us. One big worry I noticed was parent now realising that their kids would probably leave, leaving them behind and that would be very hard. I left my parents too. If they leave early enough the could import their folks. Chat's and reminiscing are great, but it's then that you realise just how much a Canadian Kid has over a similar aged SA kid. Canada simply has a million times more opportunities for kids than SA does. Competition for courses in Canada is stiff, discrimination in SA is a problem. For me, I think competition is something I can deal with more easily - at least it's fairer. In SA you pay 2 arms and 3 legs and a spleen kidney and liver for a "private" school - in Canada you can too - but public school generally compare extremely well with private SA school. Stop frothing at the mouth I say. My kids had more course choice in school than I could shake 10 sticks at, as well as advanced calculus and functions and killer science etc. There was photography, food, business, mechanics, electrics, cooking, catering, and and - each forms a credit towards your high school diploma. The big issue I have with SA is everyone I know that has a half motivated kid gets 6 A's. Statistics tell me there is something wrong with that distribution.... But then I'm not a boffin. So then it was back to JHB, and London and soon back to Canada. And now I am a citizen, I feel warm and fuzzy looking at my boarding pass for Canada. I love the snow and the life there now - it took a bit of time to get used to. Here in the UK I have been constantly cold - never warm like in Canada. It's a cross between SA no insulation and Canada's crazy insulation - the place I am working here is not heated, so you are cold and you breath steams - other places (except shops) are like that too. No place I have been to in Canada is not heated in winter. My family seem to be happily settled. The girls are doing amazingly well at school and university - Canada rates 2nd in the world school rankings - behind Switzerland - when I last checked. So I am confident my children have a good education. They are both in "STEM" science,technology engineering and maths. If you can steer your kids this way, the world could be their oyster. There is lots of money to be had for university aid. Government aid too. Although, it seems that SA is not about to go over to free university for people earning under R350 0000. That's pretty high salary isn't it? How the heck are they going to manage with all those new applicants vs spots? And as I understand it the university are already financially crippled. Perhaps Cyril can fix it - hope so. Also I believe there are no longer trade tests? That's odd - how do you know the "appies" are competent? But I digress.... Both girls can drive now - insurance is no fun, but that's just the way it is. Getting a licence here is painless and fair - and no bribes needed. Emergency service & cops are brilliant (just don't be a di*k to the cops!) The roads are pretty safe and even girls can move freely without much fear of crime. (There is always an increased risk with girls - better here than SA!) If you come to Canada, you need to lose that SA mindset that private is the only way to go. I have a public school child getting 80-90% in second year BioMedical. That a simple public school education. She works hard, very hard. But the school provided the tools. I used to help with her work from GR9, and I was amazed by the exponential increase in (both their) abilities from when they left SA to now. I'm sure it's a growing up thing, so It would have probably been the same in SA. The teachers here are not perfect, but generally they are great and helpful and supportive - if you can read between the teen bluster and puffing. I'm not sure what the younger one will do - she's taking stem too - but ultimately she'll have to find something that interests her - forensic science is currently on her radar. So I am a lucky parent. I moved from SA for a better future, I struggled as did my family. The first years were difficult and hard on the family and marriage. 5 Years on, I am literally on the edge of my seat in London, looking forward to that first embrace of my lovely wife and 2 grown up girls. And the new pesky Canadian stoep-kakker - ha, ha. I'm going home ! Yay ! What more could a person want than the success of his kids and partner.... I hope it grows and grows. I guess I'm bragging again - but I am also trying to say, that if you chose this life, it can work out no matter what the people in SA say. You might not have a house on the river, or a place in plet, but you'll have your family and a new life with different wants and needs. And it's amazing how those alter too. People trash the Canadian health system, it's not as easy as in SA where you just go where you want. It's harder here and the rules of engagement are different. The Canadian doctors (UOfT) are an odd bunch, times have changed and training methods seem to have mutated in ways I don't recognize. Restraint in prescriptions are the order of the day. Very frustrating if you are in extreme pain. Fear of addiction can make doctors leave you wondering what the hell your going to do.... then if you see another, you go on the substance abuse watch list - because you double doctoring.... ie got prescribed pain killers from 2 different doctors.... I was't looking for a high, I was looking for the pain to go away. But then they did a Cat scan without a wait - and it's all for free and now I know my insides are normal and no cancer and lumps. You win on the swings and lose on the roundabouts. The trick is to learn to work the system as the SA rules just don't apply here as they don't apply for anything else... We're learning - fast. I'm growing to appreciate my new home more and more, In see SA a place of potential and now excitement - post zuma - I'm just glad that I have Canadian issues to deal with and not SA ones. This will be my first election - and boy am I looking forward to "anything but Wynne " And that is where you might be in 5 years if you managed to settle and become part of the system.. Some days I still feel like a stranger - but year that improves and hopefully one day it will be gone.
  3. 4 points
    Thanks for the positive comments - Ta @AnelleR2008 for the course info. MJ's a colleague of the same immigration "group" - and I know she's fine ! @Gary van der Westhuizen I suspect you may be here: (If not great ! Perhaps someone else can relate - I have more tales to tell !) It's great to hear you are in town and trying to make the best of things. I remember the 6th month mark - that would have put us in our first winter and Christmas By now the reality of settling in will be firmly taking hold. Simply, it's is (was) hard for many of us. You are a stranger in a strange land to steal a line from Robert Heinlein. I'm not sure what support you have, but if it's anything like me, they can be as much a curse as a blessing. I found my brother after 15 years to be firmly Canadian in views and ways. He had forgotten what it was like to be a newbie - and he'd been transferred by his company all those years back container and may perks - we had arrived with 4 suitcases, and a 2 crates (to follow) of precious stuff - which later turned out to be a precious nuisance. The thing is we change, and it's dramatic when you arrive here - you have to or else you will not survive. In the first years - probably 2 or 3, things can be really tough. Money is short - jobs might be far from ideal and Canadians are polite but generally reserved in my experience. I have taken a lot of flack for this statement over the years, but I stand by it. In the UK, I meet people young and old in the course of my job - and I make a connection in an instant. I can't put my finger on why that is - but in Canada, there's just no spark. (I figure if I was a real d*K, then I would have just as much difficulty in the uk as in Canada - connecting with people. So by extrapolation - not a total nob ) I think it's something to do with facial expressions and subliminal communication - British people get me - my father was British - so perhaps it's the Genes... But by contrast, Canadian people are polite, but disconnected, it takes them time to get me. At work I am known as the guy with the "wicked" sense of humour..... I had more acquaintances transitioning into basic friends in the uk in a few weeks than I think I have in Canada in the 5 years I have been here. Today was different for some reason, I was waiting at a till for a price correction which was taking forever - this oldish guy is patiently waiting - so I say, "hey, I'm sorry this could take a while"... he says "I don't mind, I'm retired and I have nothing but time...." and then we began to chat like old friends - it was nice - perhaps he was ex-British ! Perhaps you are younger and more adept at making new friends. I'm 50 now - wow, that is old, so I'm another old guy - though nature has blessed me with good age genes, so people think I am 40 I hope you are (more adept) , because everyone needs friends to progress. If you have not yet found a satisfying job, hang in there, it takes time - for me it was about 8 months. My first job (from being a process engineer) ha, ha, was mowing lawns. Oh my ! Imagine what the SA "you'll regret it " people would have had to say if they'd known. For me, mowing lawns in the summer was strangely therapeutic. The people I worked with were the roughest of rough - not bad people, but interesting. Then I started to work for a Russian company - I dubbed them "The Russians" - Talking was not allowed, however, brilliant idea's were expected to improve designs and enhance production. I'm not sure how the heck that is supposed to work - how can a team of 'engineers' be creative if they are not allow to talk. It was weird. They were hard people, when my increase was due, they told me I was cr**p. I was devastated as I'd never been told that ever. When I resigned, they made 4 counter offers - I guess I was really cr*P - You see, if you are rubbish and they "are thinking of letting you go", then you don't get an increase... very nasty tactics. Their loss, I moved on and I took my 25 years of design experience with me. My next (and current job) was different. They quickly realised my value - now I travel for them, have a company credit card and nobody asks me questions. I do my job and I do it well. We keep producing great innovations and the profits keep increasing. Yes, sometimes I do feel smug as last year the "Russian" tried to entice me back - yeah, no. Generally SA immigrants are highly qualified and experience - which I have no doubt you are - so it's a matter of time before someone recognises you and you start to fly. I expect the same for your spouse. As a father and a partner, I found I was riddled with guilt for having taken my kids from the life & friends they knew and my wife from her idyllic life at the sea. While it was a joint decision ( I was the driving force), I was OK - as a newbie could be - , but the rest of the family struggled to fit in. My eldest who's soft, cried many nights. I used to lie on her bed in the lounge of the cottage where we lived - trying to cheer her up. I would go several times a night as I heard the sobs. It's a terrible thing to be a dad and to watch you kids suffer. A lot of it was probably teen angst and issues - it just fell at a time that was now more difficult than ever. Of course, my wife who's Afrikaans was having her own version of hell, made worse by the kids' suffering. These are the times when the anchor you need to be is shaken to the core. You lie wake at night knowing the reasons why you moved, but crying inside because of the pain it's causing. Surely something meant to help everyone should not cause such pain. Change - it's hard. "Why did you bring us here - I'm going back as soon as I turn 18" - these are terrible words to hear among sobs and tears. The nights were long and sad. Afterwards they told me that they kept most of it under wraps because they could see I was suffering ! Wow, those were hard times. Now 2 of them are lying in front of the TV enjoying a show - tomorrow they are off to Buffalo for their first shopping / USA experience - the wings are stretching and being tested. Slowly the hard times change, and the better times start to replace them - and the "i'm going back as soon as I'm 18" becomes - I'm going to buy a house and a car and settle here - daddy what do you think of that - I'll earn xxx will that be enough? I will buy you that place next to the mellie field just like in ET that you always talk about. Daddy, my friend did this and that, I got 80 in my midterm Chemistry. I won't be home this weekend because me and xxxx are going to yyyy and then xzzz. (You mean xxx and I are going - DAD !) The change has set in and the pain begins to lessen - for me, the guilt just does not seem to relent. I hear them laugh and chat and tell about their experiences - then there's a war and then they are in bed together with the darn Mulshi puppy watching a show together, and then there is another screaming match, slamming doors and storming. Healthy teens in my house, when they are both home. Gary, I don't know anything about you, but I definitely can feel your pain and I know what you must be feeling now. I promise that the payback, which is handsome will come in time - your spouse will regain her spring, and the kids (if you have ! ) will find their mojo. It takes a hell of a lot of time, in my opinion. People say - 2 years or 3 or 5 or more. I suppose it will be different for all of us. The bad days are BAD, and the good days are mediocre. I'm not sure the amazing days are back - though, I'm not sure I remember many amazing days even before we arrived. Being married is hard, being married when your whole life collapse about you is 10 times harder. You do seek strength from your partner, but you also have to deal with new friction and problems. I still remember my debit card bouncing for the first time in a Canadian store, horrible. Eventually you start to get stronger and the banks start throwing tons of offers for loans at you - credit card increase letters all the time and 'special customer' offers. You have arrived - ha, ha, not so much. If this rings true for you, I encourage you to bury your face in your partners neck and hold on tight - if you have kids, pull them in - because right now it's you and your family against the odds, and the odds are harsh - but I believe you will and can beat them if you try. I know this to be real and not BS, because know that you already had the strength to get this far. That makes you and your partner tough smart people - take that energy, share it and let it propel you to the next level. Believe in each other. Soon you will be sitting in my lofty chair giving unwanted advice to newbies - you will have earned the right, because you have run the gauntlet and survived, and succeeded. Don't let the bad days do too much damage to your unit, scrum down and wait it out. Don't give up, the rewards are slow, but large - if you have or intend to have kids, you are giving them a very precious gift. (Even with little rocket man and trump nearby !) If you don't have kids or don't intend to, then you and your partner have given each other a special gift. And there ends my advice, wanted or not - VASBYT it does improve. If you need to chat, you can PM me, perhaps I can bore your bad days away
  4. 4 points
    Your feelings are NORMAL! I think we've all been through this. My advice: Spend the time few weeks with family, see the things you still want to see in SA. Stop, smell the roses. Also, my view is a little different about the airport. If it is important to your family, let them go to the airport. This is such a small thing in the greater scheme of things.... it is HARD for them. They have no adventure to look forward to, they probably feel subconsciously "rejected" because of your leaving (and they probably don't even realize it). Meet at a restaurant at the airport WAY (hours if need be) before you need to be there. Share a final meal, say your goodbyes and go through security WAY before you need to fly out. That way YOU have time to settle on the other side and just BREATHE, but they also saw you off. Of course this may not work for everyone, but I wish we had done it that way.
  5. 4 points
    @Rabie, good idea to move to Oz first. It will give you enough time and experience to make certain Canada is still your preference. As I have said elsewhere on this forum, in my case Oz would have been a better option, but I did not do my research well enough. I love Canada, and am grateful to be a citizen, but I brushed over some crucial facts prior to arrival, thinking it would never happen to me. 1. People with PhDs driving taxis and working at the till in supermarkets - very real, not just one or two. Finding a decent job is very difficult. 2. Children struggling to get into study fields - getting into medicine in Canada is near impossible, and I understand the same goes for physiotherapy, lawyers and a host of other professions. My son is currently chewing rocks to get into med school, while two of his friends went to Oz (with lower marks), and they got accepted into medicine without any fuss. And we are now too old to move again, so we will grin and bear it, but do not write of Oz too soon.
  6. 3 points
    Thank you guys... We have applied for an extension... We also have the local MPs blessings- He should hopefully pull a few strings on the federal level.
  7. 3 points
    Tax season starts tomorrow! Hope you guys are ready. https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/news/2018/02/the_canada_revenueagencyislaunchingthe2018taxfilingseason.html The 2018 tax filing season will run from Feb 26, 2018 - April 30, 2018. The CRA will have extended hours with regards tax enquiries. Some of the new things this year: if you get an invite, you may be able to do your taxes over the phone (that's a wow, even for me) a nurse practitioner can now certify a DTC (Disability Tax Credit) certificate Some changes on tax credits and amounts: As of January 1, 2017, the federal education and textbook credits were eliminated. As of January 1, 2017, the children’s arts tax credit and children’s fitness tax credit were eliminated. As of July 1, 2017, the public transit tax credit was eliminated. What's new - https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/news/newsroom/tax-tips/tax-filing-season-media-kit/tfsmk1.html
  8. 3 points
    Goodbyes are very hard and no amount of research can help prepare you. It's deeply personal. I can remember the moment I locked the front door of our home after everything was packed up - knowing we would never live in that home again. Handing over the car keys of the car I loved. I can remember leaving the office farewell party my colleaues arranged and knew I was officially unemployed and would be starting from zero. Knew I would never work with that group of people I truly liked and respected. And I can remember the family farewells including seeing my parents hug my son goodbye. They adored him and he loved them. I still get sad thinking about it and all the years they lost after we moved. Canada has been good to us but it is bittersweet.
  9. 2 points
    The Lower Mainland is pretty amazing too...just putting it out there haha. So many Maritime posts lately, I feel lonely here
  10. 2 points
    https://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/australian-minister-dutton-is-an-out-and-out-racist-20180316 There seems to have been a lot more reporting in Oz and NZ on the farm murders since the land grab thing has gone through (https://www.facebook.com/dirk.steyn.718/videos/10155530774636378/) It will be interesting to see if they proceed with this, or if it is just political grand standing
  11. 2 points
    Thanks, Cathy, good to be forewarned. That explains why everything there is so green!
  12. 2 points
    While digging around, I came across an article..... It is almost a year old, but I doubt much has changed: http://www.macleans.ca/news/canada/150-reasons-why-its-better-to-be-canadian/
  13. 2 points
    I have a group of friends that go on a guys’ trip every few years. Sometimes these guys engage in some debauchery and like activities. Sometimes. The last trip we were on was Costa Rica (see my posts above). That trip ended up in a great adventure. Well, that trip only really started after 2 nights of the guys going crazy. Matt and I decided that we wanted more out of a trip than copious amounts of drinking and partying. Especially since I don’t drink. This year, the trip decided upon was to Cartagena, Columbia. Since I don’t indulge in the debaucherous behaviour (Matt and I usually end up on excursions etc.) there seemed nothing that Columbia could offer me. I’ve been to beaches and island holidays and quite frankly I’d probably find this trip boring. If I want to be bored and eat myself into oblivion, I would just go to Cuba. Logistics also seemed to get in the way in any event. The flight alone had a long stopover and would add many hours to the journey. I don’t mind the stopover if the trip is worth it. Summarily it got cancelled. Long stopovers seems more scary than the word commitment to these guys. Matt called me up on a Friday afternoon. “Hey Clive, do you want to go to Iceland?” I thought about it and said “Sure, I’m a little crazy so why not?” On Monday I booked everything and that Friday we flew out. Basically, within a week of the idea hatching. Never let it be said, that I am anything but spontaneous. The flight left at 6pm. I’m sure I’ve complained about flights before (maybe just a little). We went on WOW air which was the ultimate budget airline. Words of wisdom: Expect nothing and you’ll never be disappointed. And nothing is what we got. No water, no drinks, no stale peanuts. Zip. Nada. Cramped. Tight. Okay okay. I’m 6’3” and I’ve been spending some time in the gym so I top 260 lbs. They don’t make planes with me in mind but this was tight for a normal sized guy. Thankfully the flight was only 6 agonizing hours. After landing and breezing through customs we went to pick up our car. I think that car hire places are part of the big scam system. They drive the living fear into you. I ended up buying scratch and nick insurance. Ugh. Waste of money. I should have known better. We’re driving on roads full of ice, grime and dirt. There is no way they would be able to tell if there were scratches on the car. Our massive vehicle was a 1.2 liter KIA picante. Even with a corporate discount it would be $350 CAD for 5 days. It just felt like I was being fleeced. At 6 am we headed out to our first destination, driving in blowing snow. Did I mention the roads were winding and mountainous in sections. That there are no guardrails anywhere so if you go off the road, you’re basically toast. Just a minor inconvenience in my book. Our destination was Jökulsárlón, 5 hours away. Now hear me out. We landed at 5:50am. If we booked a hotel in Reykjavik we would only be able to check in around 3pm. What were we going to do all day? Hang around in a coffee shop? It seemed like a waste of time. So, I booked an excursion for 1pm. After about 3 hours of driving, I felt complete and utter exhaustion. My body was reminding me “Hey dummy. You’re 42 years old and you need to sleep you old fart.” So I woke Matt and we switched. The landscape was interesting. Total darkness. We only have sunlight from 11am-3pm. We stopped twice along the way, only once for gas. We had our second taste of how expensive Iceland is. Petrol is around double at $2.30 CAD per liter. I was at that point that I became thankful that we were driving a 1.2 liter micro car. Stopped at some interesting things like these huge chunks of ice on the beach. Jökulsárlón is a bit of a tourist hub. There are these huge floating glaciers and a small café that is an absolute goldmine. A soup and sandwich ran me around $18. I booked the tour through Extreme Iceland to go check out an ice cave. The cave was only about 20min from Jökulsárlón, but you needed a specialized vehicle to get there. They gave you a quick instructional on wearing cramp-ons and supplied a helmet. Unfortunately, we had cloud cover so the cave itself was completely dark. This excursion cost $250 CAD per person and I believe value for money was not there. The vehicle was overkill as we saw people with a ford explorer make it to the cave. I really enjoy being ripped off. Seems to be a pastime when I’m on vacation. Was interesting though, knowing that there is no cave in the summer and it will reform again next winter. We spent the night at the Hali Country Hotel (15 min away) which included breakfast for $200 CAD for 2 people. Dinner was going to be a whole other ball of wax. The specialty food of Iceland is lamb. Fortunately I love lamb so I was good to go. You can expect to pay $50 CAD for a main course here. I must admit, that the food itself was exquisite. Another interesting fact about eating out is that waiters/waitresses do not expect a tip. They are paid well and it is customary not to tip as a good salary is the norm. I thought this was quite insightful. The next morning we headed to Skaftafell only 45 min away. I booked another tour. We were going to hike on a glacier at 11am. Again, cramp-ons, ice-pick, helmet and we’re off. We spent about 1.5 hours on the glacier and for $100 per person it was totally worth it. It’s important not to let your mind wander into what it would be like to fall into a crevice. Especially after watching some movies like vertical limit – a movie centered on falling down a crevice. Honestly, they don’t do it justice. Your chance of survival would be pretty slim in reality, especially for a guy like me. That skinny little guide is not going to drag my huge butt from the bottom of a crevice. Yep, I’d be done. After the glacier, we hopped in the car and headed to Vik for some retail therapy. The store, was Icewear. The cost. Astronomical. A sweater would run you around $200 CAD but you felt like it would be a once in a lifetime chance to buy Icelandic wool. Supposedly it was really warm. After giving them a small piece of my soul we decided on one more stop before Reykjavik. Our first waterfall visit in Iceland – Skogafloss. We must have driven past this on our way to Jökulsárlón but it was pitch dark of course. We couldn’t see jack. The waterfall was impressive for Iceland, I guess. I don’t know, once you’ve been to Niagara falls, everything else seems….well a little meh. Cool thing about this is that you can walk a staircase to the top and along the edge with no safety railings. To boot, the sun was setting and we had to hustle to the top. Obviously I took a shortcut that said “Closed, do not enter”. I went anyway and Matt hustling behind me yelling something about it being dangerous. Yep, risk your life on slippery rocks – that’s how I roll. All part of the adventure, right? We were rewarded with a beautiful sunset over the ocean and nobody accidentally killed themselves. Bonus. After a good nights’ sleep in Reykjavik it was time to tackle the famous golden circle. We were going to hit 5 stops in 4 hours. We’re burning daylights here people. Hit the road around 10:30am and made the first stop at the Þingvellir National park. Making that stop made me really thankful that I was not on a tour bus. I just pictured it in my head. “Okay people, lets meet back here in an hour….(one hour later)….Hey where’s Bob. Oh he’s taking a dump. Ok, wait for diarrhea Bob on the bus.” Ugh. We spent all of 10 minutes there, took a pic and moved on. Next stop was at the Geysir. Watching hot water sprouting steam into the sky. Quite entertaining. What was even more entertaining was watching people slip and fall all over the place. Sub-zero temperatures plus water spraying everywhere equals lots of ice. People are obviously dumb enough to ignore the “please wear cramp-ons sign” and think that walking on a massive sheets of ice is a good idea. I could have sat there all day. It was very entertaining. Young, old, kids….everyone had a turn slipping and falling. A hospital in the area would make a killing. Even a small office with a portable x-ray machine would do well. Made me think that Natural selection could be a prevailing theme in Iceland. We made 2 more waterfall stops. Gullfoss and Faxi. Nice but still meh. Most entertaining part was doing donuts in the parking lot at Faxi. I love driving on snow and ice sometimes. Next stop was the Kerio volcano crater. Again, no safety railing and able to walk everywhere. It was awesome. Completely worthwhile stop. Pictures can’t do it justice as it was huge and walking into the base of a crater was fantastic. Matt wanted to stop at the Hellisheiðarvirkjun geothermal plant. I must admit that it seemed like a boring endeavour. At the end of the day, it turned out to be really cool and state of the art. They give you access to everywhere and are happy to share their technology. The girl working at reception was a trained geologist. I feel like we have a similar issue in Canada. Lots of people with degrees doing menial work because there is nothing in their field. She was looking at working in Calgary or Fort McMurray which in my opinion would be a good move. We had another expensive dinner and were a little bummed as our northern lights tour was cancelled. Not due to weather but due to no geomagnetic activity. The second day in Iceland was consumed by exploring Reykjavik. Did the hop on hop off bus tour and just walked to most of the sights. The church, theatre, pedestrian walkway etc. The city itself was very European in style and feel. That night we got on a bus tour to see the northern lights. The bus driver took us to a very remote location and we got to see it, but not a crazy lightshow as the activity was fairly low. Still another great experience. The last day was going to be chill at the Blue Lagoon spa and fly to Toronto after. Here are my thoughts on the Blue lagoon. Simply speaking it was overpriced for what it was. Hot sulfuric water bath for $100 per person. I would research more and find a more local place for that endeavour. All in all, Iceland was a really interesting trip and I would recommend to anyone. You don’t need much more than 5 days and it will run you around $2500 CAD per person if you do what I did. Cross that bugger off my list of places to see. I'll post some pics on Thursday.
  14. 2 points
    We'll be flying to Canada exactly 2,5 years after creating our first EE profile. We received the message that our visas are in our passports on our anniversary nogal! I've cried enough tears to flood Canada, had enough stomping-feet temper tantrums to shift continents, but it all changed when hubby & I said: "OK God, this is Yours." Things just started happening in a way that made my head spin. When we're settled I'll write my whole story which will hopefully encourage those that have been waiting for a long time for the miracle ITA.
  15. 2 points
    A pic from a place I frequent.
  16. 2 points
    So I got my PR card in the mail on Wednesday! Best early birthday gift ever! It's a beautiful card! Also almost 2 months in. Still love being here. and @poorguy, public transport around Vancouver is good. I love the Seabus and Skytrain. Regularly take them to head downtown or west end/east Vancouver. Somehow I have been lucky in that all the places I went to were conveniently close to Skytrain stations haha. Haven't really been on a bus yet... I prefer trains and walking. The Seabus to/from the North Shore is great, and it runs until 1am every day but Sunday. Better than driving and trying to find parking downtown.
  17. 2 points
    Correct. In Québec it is optional to take your husband’s surname, yet most women don’t bother. I’m married and took my husband’s surname while we were still in SA. In Québec people think we are brother and sister due to this .... 🤭
  18. 2 points
    I'm quite familiar withe difference but thanks for picking up my silly mistake. I hang my head in shame. Just to further iterate for those still doing IELTS, the easiest way to distinct is verb vs noun. If it sounds like a Z then you're using it as a verb: "I advise you not to take that route today. " If it's sounds like an S then it's a noun : "She gave her daughter advice on what to say to her teacher." You can advise someone to give advice. Isn't English fun? 😂
  19. 2 points
    Can one of the moderators please fix the heading of this topic? ADVISE: offer suggestions about the best course of action to someone. "I advised him to go home" ADVICE: guidance or recommendations concerning prudent future action, typically given by someone regarded as knowledgeable or authoritative. I know I am a bit fixated on the difference between advice and advise, but please accommodate me. Highlighting that difference may just be the difference between passing and failing your IELTS test.
  20. 2 points
    So...Its been a long road, but we are almost there. We started the process 3 years and 3 children ago. Obviously the pregnancies slowed us down as we had to keep delaying the process because I obviously couldn't do the medical pregnant. Thinking back, this would probably have only taken us 1 year if we hadn't had the delays, as wonderful as they are. We decided to use a recommended agency to streamline and simplify the whole process, and i can definitely recommend this route. All we got was a sign here, go here, email us this. CanadaAbroad.com. Deanne and Nicolene were lovely and so efficient. They definitely know what to do and are up to date on ANY changes that the Canadians make. We decided to do the skilled workers - express entry route. My husband received higher points than I did so we have continued on his application. We all received our PR in January and need to be there before July 2018. Visas are in our passports, now the work begins. Our house is for sale, we are selling a lot of our furniture but we are also taking a container full of furniture with. We did the numbers, for the quality that we have, its more expensive to replace in Canada. We are not taking and electronics. We got quotes from Elliots, Stuttafords, Biddulphs and ExecuMove. They were all extremely efficient and helpful, but we will be going with ExecuMove as they are the best prices overall, and come highly recommended. We have opened a RBC Royal Bank Personal Deposit Account because they offer special rates to landing permanent residents in Canada. Obviously we can only deposit money at the moment as well have to physically walk into the bank and confirm our identity before the account is fully active. It was super easy and the service....WOW. Not used to such helpful service. We did everything over the internet and on the phone. My husband will be flying a month earlier than us, to start job hunting and arrange accommodation. He will be staying AirBNB to begin and has rented a car through Avis for the first 2 weeks. Very reasonably price. Myself, the 3 children and our Aunt will follow in June. Yay! 26 hours on a flight with 2 infants and a 2 year old, wish me luck. I obviously cant fly with them alone as you need one adult per infant. We have our last meeting with Deanne on Friday where we are going to bombard her with all the questions that we have left, our main concern now is the 3 months medical aid we will need, but currently we have found BlueCross https://on.bluecross.ca/ and they seem quite reasonable. Will keep updating on our progress.
  21. 2 points
    @Phasan - it is very important to check for yourself. Find out what your score is. Where you lose points. Look at other countries (check out NZ first, I think of all the countries Saffers go to they are probably the easiest). Click on every link, and read everything. Go through all the Provincial programs and see what is there. Go to the NZ site, and read through everything and see what is there. Go to the Oz site, and see what is there. In NZ (I don't know about Oz), look at how many jobs there are advertised that you qualify for. If you can see loads and loads and loads, then you have a good chance that the companies are struggling to get someone in that position, which means that they will be willing to offer it to you. Flip side of that, if there are only 5 jobs advertised for the whole of NZ, then no company will give you a job. Don't give up until you have double and triple checked every avenue.
  22. 2 points
    Hi All I know this will only be applicable to a few, but I think it will help the CA's out there. Step by step on how to convert your CA(SA) qualification to a CPA CA qualifications. Please note, this is in Ontario, and it has been my experience. It might not be the same anymore, or they might change their minds. First step is to complete the application form for foreign trained accountants, if you google it, you will find it on their website. They reference SAICA, so make sure it is the right one. After completing this, you need to send it to CPA Ontario, with proof that you are in good standing with your current accounting body. This proof needs to be sent directly from SAICA to CPA Ontario. Make sure you get SAICA to copy you on this correspondence. CPA Ontario accepted mine in email format if memory serves. SAICA isn't too bad with this, and if you email their general "contact us" email, you should get the right person to attend to this. I can't recall timelines, but SAICA isn't too hasty to get this done, so give it a few weeks. Once CPA Ontario receives and processes your application, they charge your credit card with about $280 application fee (ZAR3k) so make sure it is still open, and has funds/limit available. You can't change this once you started (You can charge the other fees mentioned below, but only much later). Once they accept this, and your application is reviewed, it goes to a committee to see if they really approve you or not. The committee doesn't sit every week, so it takes time. Step 2 is to complete another form, once they let you know you have provisionally been accepted, and pay another $1107.70 (about ZAR12k) this is after the committee has approved you. This payment is basically your annual fees and a registration fee. Some companies will cover some or all of it for you. Once they received this payment with your form, they will officially let you in as a member. Only at this point are you allowed to use the CPA CA designation. As part of the application you need to have 2 CPA CA members vouch for you, and they had to know you for a year before this. Seeing as this is virtually impossible for most people, they will also accept it if 2 CA(SA)'s vouch for you. There is a form for this as well. Once this is done, you need to register for the CARPD course, another $1011.35 (about ZAR11k). This is an online course you need to complete within 2 year of being accepted to keep your designation. It is all online, and you can do it as many times as you want, but you need to get 100% for every module. The course focuses on Canadian tax, Companies Act etc. All of this, allows you to use the CPA CA designation. If you want to become an audit partner, and sign off AFS (i.e. have a public accounting license), you will need to do the CARE exam, which I know almost nothing about. I know it is done annually in October, and is also pretty expensive. This process from start to finish will take more than 6 months, so be patient, it isn't easy, but I think in the end it is worth it. When you tell potential employers you are busy getting the local designation, and it is basically just admin, their attitude changes, and possibly even the jobs you can apply for. This is what I did, and I am allowed to call myself a CPA CA. They recently went through an amalgamation of designations, thus the CPA CA. You also get CPA CGA and CPA CMA. CPA CA's here go through the same audit training as we did in SA, and as such, some people see this is as the best one, and you will hear the debates on this, I am sure. Hope this helps, and feel free to ask any question you might have.
  23. 2 points
    This is what we chose to do when we gained UK citizenship. I don't see the point of keeping it but everyone needs to make their own decision regarding this
  24. 2 points
    That is how it was for me. I went through all the stages of loss/grieving. Thank you for your honesty and vulnerability to share how you feel. I think it is important to recognise this part of immigration. Not everything is rose coloured. You're leaving everything familiar to you (albeit not the nicest place to be), for the unfamiliar. It's just natural to have some trepidation and introspection. Recognise the "loss". Work through it and you will get through it.
  25. 2 points
    We also had an agent tell us that our chances are very slim if not impossible. We landed on Sunday - 2,5 years after we submitted our first EE profile. Waar daar 'n wil is, is daar 'n weg.
  26. 2 points
    Hi guys!!! So so excited!!!! Our passport request for Our Work permits has just come through!!! It only took 5 weeks to go through!! Yipppeeee!! What I wanted to ask is do we need to deliver our passports in person to VAC? We are in Cape Town, but have been advised by our lawyers to deliver it in person. Would that mean we’d all need to fly to Pretoria? Or could just my husband deliver the passports? Thanks you thank you 🙏 Kayla!!!!
  27. 2 points
    Hi All The Company I work for is looking for people with payroll and or accounting knowledge. It won't be a very senior position, but it can be a good start. It will be based in Guelph. Let me know if you re interested. They will only look at people already in Canada.
  28. 2 points
    @Andrew and Tash I am not sure about everyone else in the 430's range, but i am biting my nails with each draw!!!
  29. 2 points
    So our Day Zero is coming closer and closer! 5 weeks to go. I am getting pretty gatvol of all the admin stuff! So much to do and everything takes so long and two or three trips....urgh. Just want to get it over and done with now! But the big things are about done! Now it is just packing our 5 items and selling all the rest! Hope we have everything covered! What awaits us on the other side....who knows! Very excited and nervous! But it can only work out and be easier than here. At least we can shower properly and dont need to get by with a wet lappie every other day! And flushing the toilet......oh how I miss that!!! Canada, you better keep some water for us, we are on our way!
  30. 2 points
    I sold my flat last week as well, we are moving in may right now i'm in denial,shock and panic all swept under a blanket of "ignorance is bliss". I don't know, even now I don't know if its the right decision:( I am comfortable here, good job, good career prospects etc but yeah im using the old excuse of "it's for the kids" :). My kids better make a good future outa Canada cause damn, I'm giving up alot of good!
  31. 1 point
    Sorry. New immigrants no longer have to file their first tax return with CRA as paper return. This was true quite a while back (circa 2013) but they’ve changed this since then. New immigrants can now file their first tax return online. You will need a SIN number for filing.
  32. 1 point
    Hi all, So after submitting my EOI on 22 May 2017, I landed in Vancouver on 20 January 2018. About 8 months from submitting to landing. It feels like such a short period of time. No wonder my family was struggling to accept it. Well, most of them. I departed Cape Town International on Friday 19 January, at 6:15am. Flew Cathay Pacific via Hong Kong. About 4 hours layover in both OR Tambo and Hong Kong. Landed in Vancouver at 6:40am. Met up with an old friend from Finland in Hong Kong after randomly finding out he was headed for Taipei on the same day. That was great! By the way, 5 days later and my sleeping pattern is still kind of out of wack. Landing at Vancouver International was a breeze. Self declaration was quick. The early morning queue was non-existent. Had to wait for my luggage before going to immigration, and that took forever! I guess the flight was full. Waited for about 30 minutes before I spotted my bags. Removed them from the carousel and proceeded to immigration... I was the first in a queue of 2 people haha. The process was so quick and painless, I was sure she missed something. All in all it was under 5 minutes, and that includes walking back to my luggage. I had a lift waiting for me at the airport, which was nice. We went for my first Canadian (North American) breakfast at White Spot in Richmond. It was good. The taste of adventure. Aka I'm not really sure whether it was really good or I was sleepy, excited, and generally easily impressed at this stage. Anyway. After breakfast, went to ICBC in Richmond (yep, open Saturdays) to do my knowledge test. When I booked it the lady didn't even ask for my RMTC letter, as I had my expired license card with me too, and together they showed 10 years of driving. She booked my test and gave me back my license cards. $15 later. Sat in the waiting area for a few minutes, and was called to take the test on the touch screen kiosks. It was soooo easy. If you feel unsure of a question, you are able to skip it and move it to the back of the queue, so I got full marks on the test. Booked my drivers license test for 29 January. This was the earliest one. After ICBC, I went to a mall to get a SIM card. Went with Fido, as they seemed like a goodish deal and it's month to month so I could move should I want to. Mobile data costs are insane here though...but atm I'm paying $45 excluding GST for 1GB, unlimited Ca wide calls off peak, 500 peak, and unlimited international texts. And some other kinda useless things. Went to RBC to try activate my account, but they were busy and I could only get an appointment at 15:30 that Saturday. Decided to leave it for Monday. I then proceeded to my B&B in Mount Pleasant where I was going to stay for 4 nights until I could move to the Airbnb place in North Vancouver. It was a really good location. under 10 minute walk to the Broadway Skytrain station, and RBC bank, and Service Canada was a 20 minute walk. I walked a lot. It was fun. Finally got used to not being too paranoid about crossing streets when the pedestrian light is white too. Sunday was spent lazing about and sleeping. Or trying too. Jet lag is a pain. My schedule is slowly recovering. On Monday, first thing, I went to RBC at 9ish am. The consultant was not yet in, so I was asked to wait for her for a few minutes. About 5 minutes later she came in and took me to her office. Started to activate my account etc, but then realised that, since I created my account through the Ontario branch, she wasn't able to simply activate my account. The solution was for her to open a new account on the RBC West region, but this only took effect over night it seems, so she booked me to come back at 12:00 the next day. Subsequently went to Service Canada to register for my SIN. Got there, the lady at reception was friendly...actually I have yet to meet anyone that wasn't friendly...and she told me her kids want to visit SA! Anyway, I was asked to sit and wait for my name to be called. I sat for about 15 minutes, before being called. The lady helping me was intrigued by my surname, and was a lover of puns. Had a good laugh with her. Anyway, the SIN took less than 5 minutes total. Left Service Canada and walked to Best Buy/ Canadian Tire to find an adapter that I have been struggling to find, even in SA. And then I saw my first Canadian sunshine! And also the last, so far. Best Buy was cool, but didn't find what I wanted. Canadian Tire had an adapter though, for $15. And so I also used self checkout for the first time. Interesting. The next day, I went back to RBC at 12, the consultant was on time, and she started activated credit cards and mobile banking etc. So efficient. She even transferred the money in the RBC Central region to this new account, and closed the old one. All of this took about 35 minutes. I'll get my cards in about 2 weeks, in the mail. Really impressed by RBC. Especially the Broadway branch. Walked to Avis to get a rental I booked online earlier the morning. Again, a 10 or so minute walk. Walking is good, even in the rain. Glad I brought my Stellenbosch umbrella. Anyway, I booked the second cheapest option on their website, since I needed a car with a boot for my luggage. As the guy was getting keys and stuff ready, he picked up a key, looked at it, then at me...put it down again...and proceeded to ask me: "Would you like to drive a Charger"... What? As in, a car that was on my desktop wallpaper for years? My young boy dream car? You serious? So yea, he was serious. I am driving a 2018 Dodge Charger V6 as a rental, for the price of the second cheapest option. The cynic in my wonders what the catch is. But, damn. I love this car. It's so fast (to 50, or 70, or 110...whatever the limit is...) and comfortable. One day I will drive my own. Been driving since then, as much as possible to get experience for the test on the 29th. Have a lesson tonight with an instructor, just to fine tune. I am getting pretty used to the driving environment. Driving in downtown wasn't as horrifying as I had anticipated either. Been meeting up with people now and then too. Somehow, all the people I meet up with are immigrants, although settled already. Really enjoying Vancouver at the moment. Sometimes I worry that it's going too easily and that I am missing something obvious...? Also, Feta is ridiculously expensive here.... And went to Save On Foods in Lower Lonsdale yesterday. I was standing at the fresh cut fruits section when the lady next to me starts telling me which ones are most popular and which ones she prefers. SOOO FRIENDLY. I need to get used to this. Well, that is a quick and maybe incomplete summary of my experience here so far. I have to go move the car, as the parking situation North Vancouver is terrible, and I don't want a parking ticket on my license before I actually get said license haha. Edit: I also embraced the North American culture and subscribed to Netflix... haha
  33. 1 point
    Hi Tarryn, As far as I know there are very strict rules about sponsoring relatives. Here is some more information on the official Government of Canada website. According to this if you already have a spouse and/or children etc. with you in Canada that are permanent residents/Canadian citizens then you won't be able to sponsor a relative, unless your sister is under 18 and orphaned. Your sister will get some extra points for having a sibling that is a Canadian permanent resident if she applies through Express Entry though. There has also recently been a similar discussion here.
  34. 1 point
    My speaking topic caught me off guard, so maybe worth gathering some thoughts prior to the test: "Discuss a typical festival day you have in SA." Erm-erm, like Halloween, Carnival or Thanksgiving? Only then did I realise that we didn't really do something like that in SA, especially in the time of my youth: Republic Day's military parades? Dingaansdag? Not recommended. Best I could come up with was Spring Day at Tuks, which was always a lot of good fun for the students, albeit not so much for the homeowners living close to the campus, who would wake up on the Saturday morning with all their best garden flowers having mysteriously disappeared during the night. Sigh, good times, no electric fences, no killer dogs, no CCTV cameras, no ADT ...
  35. 1 point
    The medical insurance costs on a super visa could become a problem for someone with a pre-existing condition. Not to mention the need to exit the country every 2 years. It's a tough one.
  36. 1 point
    The only difference for schooling would be if you are talking about university/college. Those on WP have to pay WAY more (international fees). It is no issue with normal school, though. We came on a work permit in 2008.
  37. 1 point
    I'm not qualified to answer that. It's an example of the type of question best discussed with an experienced immigration consultant. Might be worth your while and peace of mind to just pay for a single appointment. Just make sure it's an experienced and licensed agent. I don't endorse or recommend specific agents so you will need to look around. Question to all: Anyone on this forum had experiece applying with a dependent with dementia?
  38. 1 point
    Hi everyone, After a excruciating 130 day wait in NA2, our application finally moved to IP2 on Tuesday the 27th of Feb! Man alive, I can't begin to describe how relieved we were to see that BG Check change since we knew that they were looking hard at my son's medical exam results. His file has been with the centralized medical admissibility unit in Ottawa since 18 October 2017 where they have been deliberating........ When I contacted the visa office in Pretoria they told me that the application is on hold until they hear back from the CMAU regarding my son so the fact that we moved to IP2 shows that he passed his medical. Can't wait to get our PPR email so we can wrap up this process now!!
  39. 1 point
    CIC Ottawa has confirmed that my application has been processed at Pretoria now!I assumed that it was sent on 15 Feb.2018 when I received the "How to find a job in Canada"message. I really hope that we'll receive PPR soon.Waiting for 306 days is insane and our Medicals will expire on the 28 April 2018.
  40. 1 point
    I think that is normal. If I recall correctly ours did the same before going to “You have passed your medical ...” I’m assuming you will get a request to go for medicals.
  41. 1 point
    I believe the problem with med school in Canada, is that there aren't enough medical schools (You will know much better than me- I think we've talked). I have worked with several Canadian doctors who studied in Australia and also with some, who's kids (plural) went to Australia to study medicine and came back to Canada to work. It's not always a matter of competition, it's a lack of funding from the government. Like anything else, "free" healthcare is a business too. The demand for doctors is higher than the supply in Ontario. Lots of patients do not have family doctors in the Ottawa region and wait lists for certain specialists and some procedures are endless throughout the region. Also, the impression I get, is that even though they say they need nurses, which is true, the hospitals don't expand their programs to accommodate more patients (who are now on wait lists). Therefore, no patient in a hospital bed/other facility, results in no clinical opportunity for nursing or medicine students. The minister of health needs to take a trip down under and find out why so many Canadian students need to go study there. Also what makes the Australian healthcare so awesome and why Aus doctors get paid more than Canadian ones, for less hours. (That's one of the reasons they don't go back to Canada). Good luck to your son. May his dreams come true. Otherwise pack up the family and vat Boetie Australie toe. Ek hoor die weer daar is baie lekker.
  42. 1 point
    Agree, no point flying to pta, but if you must fly to pta, one person can deliver the passports.
  43. 1 point
    @Cornel it depends on the interviewer, but it could very well be. Send me your resume when you get here, and I will pass it on.
  44. 1 point
    @chayne that is a good idea, was wondering what we will do when the time comes! Great advice! @Gerhard SaNamCan
  45. 1 point
    Hi @Flashie, welcome to the forums. I think some of what you plan to do may not be as quick/easy to do as you'd hope and some others may not be as cumbersome. Let me tackle your questions. Firstly, I don't know if it's as easy to just enrol on the spot at the universities/colleges. Frankly I've never heard anyone doing it like this. (I could be wrong but) I don't believe they just accept students on the spot as well. Application to universities/colleges normally happen online via direct email to the learning institution or via OUAC (Ontario University Application Centre) - look here: http://www.ontarioimmigration.ca/en/study/OI_HOW_STUDY_INTL_APPLY.html You'll need to ensure the university/college you want to apply to is a designated learning institution (DLI). You will learn more about this when we get to the visa. See here the list of DLIs: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/study-canada/study-permit/prepare/designated-learning-institutions-list.html Then once you have been accepted by a DLI as a student, you will need to collate information to submit an application for a study permit visa. Some of the documents you may require to submit with your application are here: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/study-canada/study-permit/prepare/get-documents.html You can apply for the study permit visa online or paper-based. https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/study-canada/study-permit/apply.html The current processing timeline is 11 weeks from receiving your application to a decision being made according to the IRCC website. While you are here visiting, the cheapest form of transportation would be by bus. http://www.londontransit.ca/fares-and-passes/fares/ But for comfort and maybe if you want to get to places faster, Uber may be a better option. Credit cards are accepted. You will need to inform your credit card company that you are travelling prior to leaving so that they do not block/flag your cards while you use it here. Cash passports can also be used. The amount are just converted between CAD and USD, and you do suffer a bit on the forex this way, since you get hit with it when you exchange ZAR to USD and then when you use it, USD to CAD. I don't believe you need the language proficiency test for the study permit visa. Universities normally start in September and end in April. There are some which allow you to start at other times/months. It can vary. Hope this helps! Good luck.
  46. 1 point
    We are going to Alberta. We will arrive the 16th of March!!!! Cant wait haha
  47. 1 point
    Hi Gerhard Thank you for the info and tip. Much appreciated. Will look into it for sure. Hope we get decent subjects at least. Regards Tobie Crause
  48. 1 point
    We’ll be flying out on the 5th of April to Alberta! Yikes!! I know we’re doing the right thing... but are we really doing the right thing...packing our lives into a suitcase each to go unpack in an unfamiliar country where we have no friends, no family...we literally do not know anyone in Canada (except for a friend we made on this forum). I know I will be ok, and my husband will be fine, but what I’m worried about is my 3 small children one day resenting me for taking them away from their grandparents and cousins and aunts and uncles my kids see their grandparents everyday (we live on a farm with them), they are very close...we eat the veggies my youngest (4 yo) planted with his grandpa everyday...I know it is silly because children adapt easily (or that’s what I’m told) and we’re doing this mostly for them (and for my own sanity ) but it’s not easy to see my kids cry for grandma and grandpa (who are currently away visiting friends in Mosselbay...which is probably what is triggering my train of thoughts ) and for their cousins (who recently moved to Paarl) I think it will be worse knowing that I’m the cause of their heartache! I’m dreading the traumatic (and dramatic ) goodbyes at the airport, which cannot be avoided! But in all honesty, I’ll rather deal with the emotions we’ll go through now, than staying and having to say goodbye to my kids who will eventually and inevitably leave us behind to go start a new life overseas, or worse, my kids not having any future or opportunities! Selfish, I know
  49. 1 point
    I hear you! Since we booked our one way tickets (landing May 2018), Ive been an emotional wreck! Ive been acting like everyone is dying, thats the way I feel the hurt to leave behind my parents (whom I still see every day), family and best friends. Then I suddenly get excited for our new adventure, then I stress about the many things still left to do before we leave...then sad...then happy..boy its crazy! The application process was definitely the easier part. But heres to our new adventure. Im sure we will actually love it and we will make the best of it for sure:) Good luck and let us know how it goes.
  50. 1 point
    Hi guys. I have applied for AIPP as a truck driver after i landed a job in Nova Scotia. I opted to go for the Temporary work permit first so that the processing time could be shorter. I have already received a request for Passport submission. The employer did 90% of the process until i got the endorsement. The process is easy, there is no need for an immigration consultant or lawyer