Prepare for arrival – Refugees resettling to Canada

Arriving in Canada

When you arrive in Canada, an officer from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will meet you. The CBSA secures the borders and ports of entry to Canada.

You must have a valid travel document (for example, a passport or a travel document issued by the Government of Canada). You must also have a Canadian permanent resident visa with you.

The officer will ask to see your passport from your home country, if you have one, and other travel documents. Make sure you have them on hand. This will help speed up your entry into Canada.

The officer will make sure that your permanent resident visa is still valid. The expiry date is shown on the visa. You cannot use it after it expires. We cannot extend permanent resident visas. Make sure you use it within the time limit.

The officer will give you your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR). You must sign your COPR.

The officer will ask you a few questions. The questions will be similar to the ones you answered on your Application for Permanent Residence in Canada. The officer will confirm that you are eligible to enter Canada.

The officer may not allow you to enter Canada if you give false or incomplete information at the point of entry, or if you do not satisfy the officer that you are eligible to enter Canada.

If there are no problems at the port of entry, the officer will authorize you to enter Canada as a permanent resident. We will mail your permanent resident card to your new address in Canada.

You should make sure that the Canadian address on your COPR card is correct because we will send your permanent resident card to that address. If you plan to change your address in the future, or if you do not have a permanent address yet, give us the correct address as soon as you can.

Disclosure of funds

If you arrive in Canada with more than CAN$10,000, you must tell the CBSA officer. If you do not, you could be fined, and your funds could be seized. These funds could be in the form of:

  • cash,
  • securities that belong to you (for example, stocks, bonds, debentures or treasury bills), or
  • bank drafts, cheques, traveller’s cheques, or money orders.

What you can bring to Canada

You can find customs and border information on the CBSA website.

Help after you arrive

After you have been admitted to Canada, someone from a settlement organization or sponsorship group will meet you at the airport. They will bring you to a place where you will stay for the first few days. They will also help you to find a permanent place to live.

Once in Canada, there are services to help you learn English and French, find a job or other daily activities. Find out more about services in your area.

There are also services to help refugees resettle in Canada. Find out more about settlement services available to refugees in Canada.


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