Immigrating to Canada as a Pilot – Your Complete Guide for 2022

Learn more about how you can immigrate to Canada as a pilot. In the article below you can find all the information you need to start your application process!

7 Jul 2022, 6:23 pm

6

min read

Canadian Immigration for Pilots

If you’ve always dreamed of getting a permanent Canadian residence as a pilot, it’s not an overly complicated process as long as you have the patience and dedication to see it through. 

And when you do finally become a pilot, the end result is extremely rewarding. Check out your options and start the application process today, because the sooner you get started, the sooner you’ll be zipping around the world in your very own plane. 

Become a pilot as a foreigner in Canada now!

How to Immigrate to Canada as a Pilot?

A career as a pilot is a very rewarding, adventurous, and lucrative career. Did you know on average a pilot can make anywhere from $100,000 to over $500,000 every year? 

Not to mention the fun and excitement that comes with traveling around the world, experiencing something new every day.  

But the path to becoming a pilot is definitely challenging and requires dedication and patience. 

And with good reason. 

As a pilot, you hold the lives of hundreds of people in your hands at any given time, so it is perfectly reasonable to expect the training and education to be tough. 

Let’s take a dive into what it takes to become a pilot in Canada. The first thing you need to decide is what kind of pilot you want to be, recreational, private, or commercial? If you want to pilot for major airlines, that’s commercial. 

Canadian Immigration for Pilots

The requirements are as follows: 

  • While you need no flying experience when you first enroll in school, you must be at least 18 years old. 
  • Enroll in a school for your pilot training. You must have a high school degree in order to start pilot school. 
  • You can choose to go with a:
  1. Local flight school
  2. A college program – this allows you to combine a post-secondary degree with flight training. This gives you the best of both worlds. 
  3. Through the military – many people opt to join the military and join the Canadian Air Force. The plus is you become a pilot without being in debt, as the government will sponsor your training, but in exchange you will have to serve in the military for 12 years. 

Any one of these options is a really great one and the choice you make will really be based on your career aspirations and goals. 

  • Have a Class 1 Medical Certificate. It is not surprising that a pilot’s physical and mental health is of upmost importance and the first real official step you take. You will have to go through a series of exams to test out your eyesight (you need 20/20 vision), your hearing, your coordination, your spatial awareness and your general health. If you fail these exams, especially the vision one, you will not be accepted. 
  • Have a level 4 in English since the international language of aviation is English.
  • Once you pass everything and get accepted, you decide how long it takes to complete your training in school. It can take a few months or a few years, it all depends on how often you’re flying, how many hours you’re getting, how well you do on your lessons etc. Throughout your training you will also be required to pass numerous evaluations and tests. 
  • When you complete the training for Private Pilot Licence (PPL), you can then work towards getting your Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) which requires at least 200 hours of flying. 

Flying commercially 

If you want to fly commercially, you’ll have to meet the requirements of the airline you want to fly for. Let’s consider Air Canada for the purpose of this article. 

Some of the requirements Air Canada requires their pilots to have: 

  • Completed school at the university entrance level; 
  • Have an Aviation College degree or diploma; 
  • A landed immigrant status or be a Canadian citizen; 
  • A Canadian Airline Transport Pilot Licence 
  • 2,000 hours of flying time; 

Immigration Programs for Pilots

Although Canada offers dozens of different immigration programs and pathways, for pilots, the three best programs for pilots are: 

  • Express Entry 

Immigration from Other English-speaking Countries 

If you are a pilot from the US, United Kingdom, or Australia and you’re thinking of making a move to Canada, you’re in luck! 

Because of the similarities in educational systems, standards, and language between these countries, the process of becoming a pilot in Canada is much simpler. 

Canada and the US have an agreement in place that allows pilots to convert their certificates. 

American pilots in possession of a Federal Aviation Administration certificate, simply need to get their medical approval and then complete the conversion courses, write the exam and if they pass, they’ll get their Canadian license. 

It’s a similar conversion process for pilots who hold licenses in the UK or Australia. It is very quick and inexpensive and qualified pilots can become Canadian pilots in no time. 

Work as a Pilot in Canada

Like any other job, the best place to look for a pilot job is online! 

There are websites that are dedicated entirely to pilot openings and opportunities. A great place to start when looking for a pilot job in Canada is PCC Canada

Job boards and employment websites are also great places to look. 

And of course, don’t forget to look directly at the websites of commercial airlines. Want to fly for Air Canada? Check out their careers section

Canadian Immigration for Pilots

Whatever method of job search you choose, make sure your cover letter and resume are formatted according to Canadian standards, after all, you want to appear professional and polished! 

When going for a job interview, it’s important you dress the part. Wear a suit and be confident. 

Check out if you are eligible for immigration to Canada within a few minutes:

Where to Find Help with Immigration?

Is your mind spinning yet with all this information? 

Wondering where and how to get started on the process? Speaking to an immigration agency or a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant is a great first step. 

Immigrating to Canada, especially in a specific career, can entail a lot of confusing forms, applications, and processes. An RCIC will take away all that headache from you and simplify the entire process.  

An RCIC will take the time to understand how to become a pilot in Canada from another country, what your goals are, and go over your available options. 

RCIC’s can also help you look for jobs and provide support with things like formatting your resume and cover letter to meet the Canadian standards and help prepare you for interviews. In short, they will be at your side to guide you every step of the way. 

All you have to do is plan your life in Canada and decide where you want to settle.

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Grace

Grace was born in Birmingham, England, and moved to Canada with her family when she was five. She graduated from the University of British Columbia in 2015 and since then she has been working as a recruitment consultant for 10+ companies. In her spare time, Grace writes about her professional experience with winning job offers for immigrants. She also shares tips about employment that could be useful for both immigrants and local job seekers.

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