How to apply for International Experience Canada(IEC)


All information provided are directly from IRCC
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

You cannot apply for a work permit under International Experience Canada unless we’ve sent you an Invitation to Apply.

If you’ve accepted an Invitation to Apply for a work permit follow these steps:

You need to give your biometrics

In most cases, you now need to give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics) after you apply. Find out where biometrics fits in the application process.

Complete the online form

You can save the information in the online form and go back to it as often as you need to until you are ready to submit it.

Once you accept your invitation to apply, you will have 20 days to submit your work permit application. You’ll receive a message in your account with the time and date of your deadline.

Make sure you:

  • answer all questions truthfully and completely. If we find that you gave us false information or left out important details, we’ll refuse your application and you may also be ineligible for entry to Canada in the future
  • fill out all the mandatory fields in the form. You can’t submit your application until these fields are completed
  • don’t leave any gaps in time in the work history and education history sections
    • include all absences, periods of unemployment, travel dates, etc.
  • include all paid and unpaid work in the work history section
  • click “validate” at the end of each form so there are no errors or blank fields in your application


Note: If you’re applying for a Working Holiday work permit and you’re asked for information about your offer of employment,

  • type “A9999999” in the offer of employment number field
  • select “No” to the question “Has your employer paid the Employer Compliance fee?” and
  • type “Non-applicable – Working Holiday” into the employer address fields

When you have completed the application, the system will generate a personalized document checklist for you. It will show all the supporting documents you need to upload.

Get all the documents you need

Using your personalized Document Checklist, gather all your documents.

You must be able to make electronic copies of your supporting documents using a scanner or camera.

Once you have your documents ready, upload them on the Document Checklist page in your account.

Documents you may need

Proof of financial support

Bring proof of financial support with you, as Border Services Officers may ask you for proof of funds when you arrive in Canada.

Medical exams

Before you submit your work permit application, you should get a medical exam if:

  • you’ve recently lived or travelled in certain countries or territories for 6 months or more, or
  • you plan to work in:
    • the health field
    • primary or secondary education,
    • child care, or
    • elderly care

You must see a doctor that has been approved by IRCC (called a panel physician).

After the panel physician completes the medical exam:

  1. You’ll get an information printout sheet or an IMM 1017B Upfront Medical Report form
  2. Upload a copy of this document to your document checklist in the “Proof of medical exam” section. If you don’t see this section, upload the document in the “Optional documents” slot at the bottom of the checklist

If you don’t complete this step, we may refuse your application or your work permit will have medical restrictions on it, which means you won’t be allowed to work in a job that requires a medical exam.

If you can’t complete a medical exam before the deadline to submit your work permit application, you can submit proof that you’ve made an appointment to get one.

Your medical exam results are valid for 12 months. To make sure they don’t expire, you should wait until you’re invited to apply before getting a medical exam.

Learn more about medical exam requirements.

Police certificates

In most cases, you’ll need to get police certificates.

You’ll need to provide certificates for countries where you have spent time for six or more consecutive months since the age of 18.

You may need to provide certificates from more than one country. There will only be one upload field so be sure to include them as scanned copies all together.

If you’re not able to get a police certificate before the deadline to submit your application, you may upload:

  • a copy of the receipt proving you have requested one, or
  • a screenshot of the confirmation page or email you received when ordered your police certificate online.

You must have the police certificate ready to submit when an officer later requests it. You must provide the certificate by the deadline shown in the request letter, or your application will be refused.

If you have a criminal record, you may not be allowed to enter Canada. People who pose a risk to Canada’s security are also not allowed to come to Canada. Learn more about inadmissibility.

Read the special notes and considerations for the countries below:


You’ll need to provide a copy of your CV or . A curriculum vitae or résumé is a brief description of your:

  • education,
  • qualifications, and
  • work experience (main duties for each job).

It should also include your current job title and the city and country where you currently live.


You must provide a clear, readable copy of your passport. Your passport must be valid

  • when you apply to the International Experience Canada program, and
  • when you enter and depart from Canada.

Your work permit will not be issued for longer than the validity of your passport. Your passport must include a blank page other than the last page.

Digital photo

You must provide a digital photo of yourself.

Frame size
  • The final frame size of the photo must be at least 35mm x 45mm.
  • The photographs must show a full front view of the head and tops of shoulders, with the face in the middle of the photograph.
  • The size of the head, from chin to crown, must be between 31mm and 36mm.
  • Digital dimensions are often expressed in pixels or DPI (dots per inch). The physical dimensions in pixels must be at least 420 x 540.



If you scan a photo you already have, the minimum resolution must be 600 pixels per inch.


File format

  • The file may be submitted in JPEG or JPEG2000 format.
  • The final size of the image should ideally be 240 kB (kilobytes), but not less than 60 kB.
  • The image must be in colour (24 bits per pixel) in RGB colour space, which is the common output for most digital cameras.

Family information

Depending on your country of citizenship, you must complete one of the Family Information forms:

These forms request information about your

  • spouse or common-law partner,
  • parents,
  • children, step children and adopted children, and
  • your brothers and sisters, including step-siblings and half-siblings (IMM 5645 only).

Electronic Travel Authorization or Visitor visa application

Depending on your country of citizenship, you’ll need either an eTA or visitor visa. You don’t have to apply for these documents.

If you need an eTA, you’ll automatically receive one when your work permit application is approved. If you need a visitor visa, you’ll get a request letter asking you to send us your passport.

International Co-op (Internship) applicants

Proof of school registration

You must provide a letter from your educational institution that shows that you’re currently registered at that institution.

Proof your job is linked to your field of studies

Submit one of the following documents:

Internship agreement – this is a three-party agreement signed by you, your employer and your training centre. The agreement must have the following information:

  • the position title,
  • the description of the tasks performed by the student,
  • the exact start and end dates of the internship,
  • the complete address of the internship site, and
  • the employer’s contact information.


A letter from your education institution, on official letterhead, that confirms your job offer is linked to your field of studies.

Applicants using Recognized Organizations

Recognized Organization acceptance letter

If you choose to use the services of a Recognized Organization (RO) and you receive an Invitation to Apply, you may need to provide a copy of the confirmation letter from your RO when you submit your work permit application. This letter acts as proof that an RO is helping you plan your trip or find work in Canada.

Ask your RO if this applies to you.

VIE applicants

VIE letter

If you are participating in France’s VIE program, you must provide an official certificate from Business France, the French organization responsible for managing the program. The certificate must identify the participant and the employer.

Pay your fees

The fees you pay depend on the IEC category you’re applying to.

You can use the pay your fees tool to find out how much it costs to apply to IEC and how to pay your fees.

a) All participants

You must pay the IEC participation fee. For the 2019 season, the participation fee is CAN$150.

If you need to give biometrics, you’ll need to pay the biometric fee when you pay your IEC participation fee.

b) Working Holiday participants

You must also pay an open work permit holder fee of CAN$100.

c) Young Professionals and International Co-op (Internship) participants

You don’t have to pay any additional fees, but your employer must pay a CAN$230 employer compliance fee and submit your offer of employment to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Your employer must complete this step before you submit your work permit application.


The IEC participation fee, open work permit holder fee and employer compliance fee are refundable if:

  • you withdraw your work permit application before we issue your letter of introduction
  • your employer withdraws their offer of employment before your work permit is issued, or
  • your work permit application is refused

How refunds are processed

You don’t have to do anything else to get your refund. Normally, you’ll receive it within eight weeks. Your refund will be issued to the credit card used to pay the fees.

Keep your prepaid credit card for at least 18 months after you pay in case you need a refund.

If we can’t refund your payment to your credit card, we will issue a cheque.

You will not receive a refund if we learn that you misrepresented yourself (gave false information or left out important details).

Submit your complete application

Make sure you’ve:

  • filled out all mandatory form fields,
  • paid your fees, and
  • included readable colour scans of all the supporting documents.

The system will not let you submit the application unless all required documents are included. Use the Document Checklist to make sure you don’t forget anything. If you can’t get a police certificate or medical exam before the deadline to submit your work application, you can submit proof that you have:

  • requested a police certificate, or
  • made an appointment for a medical exam.

This will not affect the decision an officer will make when processing your application, but your application may take longer than the advertised processing service level agreements to process.

Once you submit your application, we’ll verify that:

  • all the information you gave us is true,
  • you are eligible to work in Canada and
  • you are admissible to Canada.

If you’re eligible, we’ll send you a message in your account and tell you what to do next.

We’ll check your application to make sure you have all the necessary documents. If it’s complete and you need to give biometrics, we’ll send you a letter that tells you so.

If it’s incomplete, we’ll return your application without processing it.

We may also ask you to:

  • go to an interview with our officials in your country, or
  • to send more information.

If you don’t need to give biometrics, we can begin reviewing your application once you submit your work permit application (including all required documents).

If you submitted proof of an appointment for your medical examination or a receipt for your police certificate request, you must provide copies of these documents when we ask for them.

We’ll also check that:

  • you qualify for a work permit,
  • you’ve provided all the required documents, and
  • the employer is allowed to hire you (specific to Young Professionals and International Co-op applicants).

It can take up to 8 weeks for your work permit application to be reviewed.

Wait until your application is approved before you

  • buy a plane ticket for any travel to Canada
  • buy health insurance for your stay in Canada
  • make commitments to your prospective employer in Canada
  • commit to any accommodation in Canada
  • cancel your accommodation or leave your job or studies in your home country

If your application is approved

If your application is approved, you’ll receive a port of entry (POE) letter in your account. The letter does not guarantee entry into Canada or guarantee a work permit.

To get your IEC work permit you must:

  • Bring your POE letter with you to Canada and show it to a border services officer at the port of entry (airport, land border, etc.)
  • Show your letter at a Canadian port of entry on or before the expiry date (the expiry date will be clearly marked on your letter)

Note: The expiry date of the POE letter cannot be changed or extended under any circumstance. You cannot transfer your letter to any other person or name. If the expiry date on your POE letter has passed and you haven’t come to Canada, this will count as an IEC participation. If you’re eligible for another participation, you must create a new profile.

If your application is refused

You’ll receive a letter of explanation in your account.

How to withdraw your application

You can withdraw your application and receive a refund if we haven’t issued you your POE letter.

To withdraw your application,

  1. contact us using the Web form; and
  2. in the “your enquiry” box, include “IEC work permit application withdrawal – your application ID number” (e.g., “IEC work permit application withdrawal – W123456789”).

We’ll review your request within three to five business days. If it’s approved, you’ll be refunded your

  • IEC participation fee, and
  • open work permit fee (Working Holiday applicants only).

If your employer paid the employer compliance fee of CAN$230, they’ll also receive a refund.

You don’t have to do anything else to get your refund. Normally, you’ll receive it within eight weeks. Your refund will be issued to the credit card used to pay the fees.

Keep your prepaid credit card for at least 18 months after you pay in case you need a refund.

If we can’t refund your payment to your credit card, we will issue a cheque.

You will not receive a refund if we learn that you misrepresented yourself (gave false information or left out important details).


If you’ve already received your POE letter

You can’t get a refund or withdraw your application.



The only exception is for Young Professionals and International Co-op (Internship) participants whose employer withdraws the offer of employment before they travel to Canada. If your employer withdraws your offer of employment, we’ll refuse your application.

We’ll refund you your IEC participation fee. Your employer will also be refunded the employer compliance fee. You don’t have to do anything else to get your refund.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

See more visa blogs


Copyright & Disclaimer

The information on this site is for information purposes only. Canada International Student Magazine (CISM) assumes no liability or responsibility for any inaccurate, delayed or incomplete information, nor for any actions taken in reliance thereon. The information contained about each individual, event or organization has been provided by such individual, event organizers or organization, or third parties without verification by us.

Any form of reproduction of any content on this website without the written permission of the publisher, is strictly prohibited. CISM is operated by Alvis Tsui(FSS) INC. a trademarked company; all rights reserved.