Frequent Asked Questions

1. Can you please tell me about your house?
2. What are there in each room?
3. How big are your rooms?
4. Can I cook in your house?
5. Is it safe in the area?
6. What is your FREE consulting service?
7. Do you have a tourist service?
8. What is the procedure to make a room reservation?


Important Questions

9. Am I eligible for OHIP right away or do I have to wait?
10. How can I apply for a Driver's Licence?
11. How Can I Get a Credit Card with no Canadian Credit History?
12. How can I open a Bank Account?
13. How can we apply for a SIN?
14. How can we get a health card?
15. How do I start my job search?
16. Introduction to Driving in Ontario
17. What should I do after landing in Canada?
18. Where can I get my educational documents evaluated?



Useful Links

Federal and Provincial Government
Immigration
Jobs and Education
Self-employment and Business
Banks and Finances
Infotainment and Toronto
Travel and Shopping


1. Can you please tell me about your house?

Our houses are located in the centre, north of Toronto. In each house there are 5 bedrooms, 2 washrooms, 2 stories and a large kitchen. The rooms are clean, bright, quiet and comfortable. Each room has storage.

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2. What are there in each room?

In each room there are fresh bedding, cable TV, telephone (Local phone is free), High speed Internet access, desk, storage, and sofa etc.

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3. How big are your rooms?

Our rooms are between 12 - 18 square meters.

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4. Can I cook in your house?

Yes, of course. The kitchen is equipped with all things you need, include: fridge-freezer, stove, rice cooker, microwave, coffeemaker, cutlery, plate, dishes & cookware.

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5. Is it safe in the area?

The area in our houses is very safe.

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6. What is your FREE consulting service?

We'll help and consult newcomers to do everything regarding landing, settling down and living in Toronto. Especially:

-  Application for PR Card (Permanent Resident)
-  Application for SIN Card (Social Insurance Number)
-  Application for Health Card
-  Bank account opening
-  Registering to learn English
-  Information on job searching and apartment renting
-  Preparation for the driver's licence test
-  Completion of various formalities and much moreā€¦

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7. Do you have a tourist service?

Yes, we also provide a tourist service. We have driver with van to service travelers to see things around Toronto, e.g. drive and guide you to Niagara Fall (the largest water fall in the world) and other places near Toronto.

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8. What is the procedure to make a room reservation?

You can fill out our on-line reservation form or you can send us the following information:

(1).Your name
(2).Your mailing address
(3).Your telephone and fax number
(4).Your landing date, time, flight number, flight company, where is your flight coming from (city, country), which terminal in Toronto airport is your flight going to landing?
(5).Do you need our airport pick-up service? It costs $40 - $50, if you take taxi, it usually costs $50 - $70.
(6).How many people are you together?
(7).How long do you need for a room?
(8).How many rooms do you need?
(9).How many suitcases do you have?
(10).  Are you new immigrant, student or traveler?

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9. Am I eligible for OHIP right away or do I have to wait?

There may be a three-month waiting period for your OHIP coverage.

If you are a newcomer to Ontario, or a former resident returning here to live after being away for more than seven months, the waiting period begins on the date you establish or re-establish residence in Ontario.

If you are an eligible resident moving to Ontario from another part of Canada, your former province's health insurance will cover you for up to three months.

If you are not covered by another province or territory, it is important to buy private health insurance to cover you until you get your Health coverage.

For more information contact a private insurance company directly or call the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association Inc. at 1-800-268-8099. In Toronto, call (416) 777-2344.

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10. How can I apply for a Driver's Licence?

Read the Driver's Handbook borrowed from the library or purchased from the bookstore before taking the knowledge test.

-  Go to Ontario Ministry of Transportation office to take the knowledge test.
-Bring your passport, immigration papers, health card and all your driving licenses when taking the test.
-A photo identification card will be given to you, you can use the card as a photo identification.
-Take the road test after passing the knowledge test.
-If you do not have a previous driving license, you need to wait one year to take the road test or 8 months if you take a driving course.
-If you have a previous driving licence, update the number of years of your driving experience to get a lower insurance premium when you own a car.

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11. How Can I Get a Credit Card with no Canadian Credit History?

Most banks will not give you a credit card without any kind of history, but there are ways to get credit and build a credit history. You can pay a deposit to get a secured credit card. Do not withdraw any cash advances using your credit card as the interest is always charged regardless of whether a full payment is made.

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12. How can I open a Bank Account?

Personal accounts let you make deposits, handle your cheques, withdraw money, pay bills and conduct other transactions depending on the type of your account. Financial institutions give their accounts different names (i.e. Money Builder), but generally there are three types of personal accounts: savings account, chequing account (current account), and combination account.

Different banks use the terms 'savings' and 'chequing' in different ways, but in general, you store money in your savings account and receive interest and you use a chequing account for your day-to-day financial needs, like paying bills or withdrawing money.

There are usually service charges for personal accounts that vary, depending on the type of account and the financial institution.

When you open any type of bank account, you will be asked for personal information and identification, including:

-  Your full name, address, date of birth, and telephone number.
-  At least two pieces of identification, which have your signature and/or photo on them. Your passport and driver's licence are best; a major credit card is also acceptable as one piece. By law, you must provide your Social Insurance Number (SIN) to your bank for any account that pays you interest.
-  If you are working, the name, address, and telephone number of your employer, and your occupation.
-  The name and telephone number of someone whom the bank can contact if they are unable to reach you (for example, your spouse or a relative over 18 years old).
-  A sample of your signature, written the way you would normally sign it on other bank forms, like cheques.

You will be asked to sign an account agreement and make a minimum deposit. If you are making a large cash deposit, the law may require that you sign a declaration attesting to the source of the funds.

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13. How can we apply for a SIN?

Most newcomers receive an application form for a Social Insurance Number (SIN) when they first arrive in Canada. You can apply at any Human Resource Centre of Canada (HRCC). You will need to show Canada Immigration visa (Record of Landing) and passport. An application receipt will be given to you. You can use the receipt as identification, for example to open a bank account. The SIN card will be mailed to your mailing address in 4-5 weeks. Once you receive the card, immediately sign it, and keep it with you. There is no fee to apply for a Social Insurance Number. You will retain the number for life.

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14. How can we get a health card?

You can apply for a health card at the provincial ministry of health office in your city. You will find the address in the provincial government listings in your telephone book. All members of your family must have their own coverage. Take their documents with you, and ask the government officer for information about registering them.

-  Refer to Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) if you intend to reside in Ontario.
-  You apply for the health card so that you can be covered by the province health plan.
-  Once you obtain the health coverage, you do not need to pay for the consultation with the doctor and the full price of the prescription.
-  However, you will only be covered after a number of days since arriving.
-  Bring your passport, immigration papers and apartment lease when applying.
-  An application receipt will be given to you.
-  You have to subscribe to the group drug insurance plan if you are unemployed or your employer does not have the plan for you.
-  The health card will be mailed to your mailing address in 3 months. You can use the card as photo identification.
-  Use the health card to see the doctor at the CLSC near your place of residence and to obtain the prescription from the pharmacy.
-  Call the CLSC near your place of residence first to make an appointment to see the doctor.

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15. How do I start my job search?

Before you even get started with your job search, there are some things you need to know. You need to know yourself, your skills, what you want, what you have to offer an employer. For most of you, it will not be easy to get a job. No one will simply give you a job, you have to apply for and get a job. To do that, you need to be able to give an employer a reason to hire you.

Go to Employment Resource Centre (ERC) to get job search information and ask someone to correct your resume. Join job-finding programs such as Job Search Workshops (3-4 day workshops with a focus on finding work) run by Settlement Agencies, specifically for newcomers. Go to library to use free computer and access the Internet to get information on assessing your qualifications for work, and on how to access trades and professions. Look for jobs listed in newspapers, professional and trade magazines. Look in the classified ads section under "Help Wanted" and "Careers". Go to different Job fairs. Send your resume and directly contact the employer. Make a cold call and talk directly to the employer. Go to Community Centre, church, language classes etc. Get to know more people to let them know about your skills, experience and set-up your networking system. Look for job listings at community centres. Search for job on the Internet. Contact community agencies to send your resume and let them find a job for you. Create your own job, try to start your own business to become self-employed.

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16. Introduction to Driving in Ontario

An Ontario driver's licence is a proof of your privilege to drive. You must carry it with you whenever you drive. Ontario has introduced a one-piece plastic driver's licence. The licence has a digitised photograph and signature of the driver and a magnetic information strip.

A driver's licence includes your name, address, signature, date of birth, gender, height, licence class, licence issue and expiry dates, and codes showing which class of vehicles you may drive and under what conditions (for example, an "X" condition means you need to wear glasses/contacts for driving).

If you live in Ontario, you must be at least 16 years old and have a valid Ontario driver's licence to drive in the province. A newcomer to Ontario who holds a driver's licence from another province or country is required to apply for an Ontario driver's licence within 60 days of taking up residence in the province.

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17. What should I do after landing in Canada?

-  Apply for Permanent Resident Card (PR card).
-  Apply for Social Insurance Number (SIN card).
-  Apply for health card (OHIP).
-  Purchase a medical insurance if you have no health plan or medical coverage after arriving.
-  Open a cheque account with a Canadian bank to temporary deposit your settlement fund.
-  Look for a long term accommodation.
-  Look for a job if you have not found one.
-  Get a driving license.
-  Register for the English or French language course.
-  Apply for a membership at the municipal library.
-  If you have children, find a school for them close to your living place.

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18. Where can I get my educational documents evaluated?

Before beginning any studies in Canada, you will need to have your academic documents (e.g. diplomas, transcripts) evaluated. The process for assessing foreign educational credentials varies from school to school. Contact schools directly to find out how to proceed.

Elementary or Secondary School: If you are going to enroll your child in a publicly funded school, that school can perform the evaluation of your child's documents. Based on information obtained from both you and your child, your child will be placed in the appropriate grade.

Colleges, Universities and Institutes: These institutes have their own rules of admission. Contact the Office of Admissions of the school where you would like to study and find out how foreign educational documents are assessed. A school calendar should provide an introduction to the process.

What to ask when contacting the institution:
-  What types of documentation does the school require? (transcripts, diplomas, letters)
-  Do these documents have to be sent directly from your former school, or can they be documents that your former school released to you?
-  Are photocopies of documents acceptable?
-  Do the documents need to be translated into English? If so, what are the school's guidelines for choosing a translator?
-  Does the institution perform the evaluation? Is there a fee?
-  If the evaluation needs to be done elsewhere, which organisations are acceptable?

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Useful Links

Federal and Provincial Government:
Canada's government and its services
Citizenship & Immigration Canada
Information on Canada's Health Care System
Healthpass -- a health insurance plan for new commers
Lots of information about Canada
Statistical information about Canada
Medical licensing authorities of Canada
Federal Government Information
Revenue Canada -- tax related information
Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC)
Medical Council of Canada
Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Canadian Passport Office
Canadian Security Intelligence Service
Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd.
Council of Ministers of Education of Canada
Department of Finance
Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
Canadian Trade Policy
Environment Canada
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Health Canada
Industry Canada
Transport Canada
Canadian Human Rights Commission
National Research Council of Canada
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council
Statistics Canada
Status of Women Canada
Treasury Board of Canada
Government of Ontario
Ministries of Education and Training
Ontario Ministry of Citizenship, Culture and Recreation
Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services
Ontario Health
Ministry of Transportation
Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)
The Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto
Toronto District School Board
Toronto HRDCs
TTC (Transportation office)

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Immigration:
Immigration Canada
Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants
Culture Net -- information on Canadian culture
Immigration & Refugee Board of Canada

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Jobs and Education:
Information on career trends, qualifications and salary expectations
Canadian Nurses' Association
Various recources for settling in Canada
Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials
Software Human Resource Council
Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario
Canadian Bar Association
Canadian Teachers' Federation
Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE)
The Canadian Council of Technicians & Technologists (CCTT)
International Development Research Centre
Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials
Ontario Social Development Network
Volunteer Centre of Toronto
Job search
PlusJobs
FindJobs
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Jobs Canada
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Canada Jobs
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Emplyment News
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Monster Jobs
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University of Toronto
Student links
Student links
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Student links
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Student links
Student links
Student links

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Self-employment and Business:
Information on starting a business in Canada
Doing Business in Canada
Commerce Net Canada -- electronic marketplace for business persons
Department of Foreign Affairs & International Trade
Municipal Licensing & Standards

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Banks and Finances:
Royal Bank
The Bank of Canada, Canada's central bank
The Business Development Bank of Canada
The Universal Currency Converter
Business Development Bank of Canada
CIBC
Bank of Montreal
HSBC
TD
Money exchange

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Infotainment and Toronto:
The Globe and Mail
Toronto Star
Toronto Sun
National Post
Toronto Public Library
Community Information Toronto
York Region
Toronto Community
Toronto Community
Bell Canada
Rogers
Telus
Fido
Canada Post
UPS Canada
Fedex Canada
Amusement
Amusement
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Amusement
Amusement
Amusement

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Travel and Shopping:
Pearson International Airport
Car rentals
Car rentals
Car rentals
Car rentals
Car rentals
Car rentals
Car rentals
Sears
Futureshop
Rent Canada
Real Net Canada
Canadian Apartments For Rent Online
Real Net Canada
Canada Mortgage & Housing corporation
Mega City
Travelocity
Used cars classifieds

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