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Working in Canada

There are different types of Work Permits that temporary residents may be eligible for while studying, or after you complete your studies in Canada. 

Frequently Asked Questions

You can only start working in Canada when you start your study program. You can’t work before your studies begin.

You can work as an international student in Canada if your study permit lists a condition that says you’re allowed to work on- or off-campus. You can work off-campus, without a work permit, if you meet all of these requirements:

  • you have a valid study permit that includes a condition that says you can work off-campus
  • you’re a full-time student at a designated learning institution (DLI)
  • you’re enrolled in a: 
  1. post-secondary academic, vocational or professional training program, or
  2. secondary-level vocational training program (Quebec only)
  • you’ve started studying
  • your study program: 
  1. is at least 6 months long, and
  2. leads to a degree, diploma or certificate
  • you have a Social Insurance Number (SIN)

*Please visit the Service Canada website to learn more about obtaining a Social Insurance Number (SIN)*

You can work off-campus only if you meet all of the requirements above and you’re only studying part-time, instead of full-time, because:
• you’re in the last semester of your study program
• you were a full-time student in your program in Canada, up until your last semester
• you don’t need a full course load to complete your program

You can only start working in Canada when you start your study program. You can’t work before your studies begin.
During regular school semesters:

  • you can work up to 20 hours

During scheduled breaks in your school year, like during winter and summer holidays:

  • you can work full-time
  • you can’t work during a break that comes before you start your very first school semester
    If your program doesn’t have scheduled academic breaks, you can’t work more than 20 hours per week.

There are no restrictions on the number of hours students can work on campus in addition to working off campus, provided they continue to meet the applicable eligibility requirements.

Students who are enrolled full time during the academic sessions before and after a regularly scheduled break and who decide to undertake a full-time or part-time course load during that regularly scheduled break are eligible to work off campus on a full-time basis. If a program of study does not provide for a regularly scheduled break and a student creates their own break in a program, it is considered a leave from studies, rather than a regularly scheduled break. Students who create their own break in a program are not eligible to work on or off campus during that break.

Check out this link for more information from the IRCC website.