Canadian Law Group

Why Brazilians Choose Canada

By Véronique Malka

In the past thirty years, the Brazilian population in Canada has increased significantly, as Brazilians are looking to establish themselves in a country offering beneficial social and economic opportunities. Canada fits this profile entirely, and is known for its openness to mass immigration, so a move to the North is often very popular. Prior to the 1990s, only around 5,000 Brazilian immigrants lived in Canada, while, in 2016, there were almost 27,000.

Last year, the Canadian government changed the visa requirements for Brazilians, allowing travelers who have either held a Canadian visitor visa in the past 10 years, or currently hold a valid U.S. nonimmigrant visa, to enter Canada temporarily by plane without a Canadian visitor visa. This gave Brazilians an even bigger incentive to travel to Canada, and eventually apply for immigration.

Brazilian Immigrants in Canada

According to the National Household Survey in 2011, the densest Brazilian population was in Ontario, followed by Québec, British Columbia, and Alberta.  Over 50% of Brazilians in Canada live in Ontario, while 26% reside in Québec, and 13% in British Columbia.

Where do Brazilians live?

It is without saying that Toronto, located in Ontario, has one of the most vibrant Brazilian communities in Canada, and continues to grow as the population becomes more diverse by the minute. The city hosts the annual Brazil festival, a colorful event that takes place at Earls Court Park, where people of all cultures can come and enjoy the celebration of Brazilian traditions. With the biggest Brazilian population in Canada, its presence in both the culture and community of the city is clear.

Brazilian students also look to Canada to obtain a quality education at a relatively low price. Vancouver, British Columbia, tops the list for travelling Brazilian students, as it is home to highly ranked public schools, and a warmer climate than the rest of the country. These students often come to Vancouver to ameliorate their English, and participate in a world-renowned education system.

Working Holiday Programs

The Working Holiday Programs offer international students both working holiday and internship programs with interest-related job placements. Brazil is part of two Working Holiday programs: SWAP Holiday and GO International. Brazilians that are currently enrolled in a higher education institution, such as a college or university, between 18 and 35, can apply for an open work permit with a validity period of 12 months. Applicants can choose between the following options: paid work programs, volunteering, or English classes. The processing time for this program is 8 weeks.

The volunteer program is very expansive, as GO International is part of a large web of volunteering connections throughout the country. Applicants can pick from a wide variety of humanitarian, environmental or wildlife projects that will both build their life experiences, as well as their resume.

The English study program is an experiential education program that focuses on learning the language through cultural immersion, as well as in-class learning. Course options include General English, University Pathway Program, International Business English, IELTS Preparation, and more.

The paid work program in both organizations places students in various jobs in areas such as hospitality, outdoor hobbies, and the culinary field. The program includes seminars, coaching, career advice, and social events. These additional benefits are very useful to students wishing to gain international work experience in Canada, as well as begin establishing themselves in the country.

If you are Brazilian and interested in moving to Canada, many options are open to you. Canada is seeing an influx of students, skilled workers, and families seeking permanent residence. For more information, contact or