Move to Canada from Germany: 2024 Working Holiday Visa Guide

Are you a German citizen looking to move to Canada? Whether you’re seeking a Canada visa from Germany or exploring a work travel visa Canada option, you’re in the right place. The International Experience Canada (IEC) program allows German citizens to work in Canada for up to 12 months with a working holiday visa, an open work permit that lets you work anywhere in the country.

Whether you’ve just finished your Abitur and are considering a gap year before university or have completed your apprenticeship and want to gain international work experience, applying for a working holiday visa Canada is a fantastic opportunity.

Start Dates



5-12 Months


From $1,190

What's Included


  • Working Holiday Visa assistance
  • Interview & Resume Revision
  • Guaranteed job in Canada before travelling
  • Subsidized staff accommodation
  • Guidance on travel insurance
  • Pre-departure orientation
  • Dedicated travel coordinator throughout your trip preparation

In Canada

  • Support to make sure you receive your work permit with no mistakes upon arrival
  • Welcome orientation
  • Assistance getting your free bank account, SIN, Canadian phone number and everything you need before heading to the resort
  • Assistance booking your Transport to the resort
  • Ongoing support throughout your time in Canada

The Fun Stuff!

  • Canada is the capital of outdoor adventure: hiking, kayaking, mountain biking, camping… try them all!
  • Have a true Canadian experience and make lifelong friendships
  • Earn money (CAD$15/hour upwards) working full-time
  • See Canada’s best wildlife: black bears, moose, wolves and grizzlies (from a safe distance)


If you’re a German citizen looking for a working holiday in Canada, the International Experience Canada (IEC) program offers an ideal pathway. To apply for a Canada visa from Germany under this program, you need to meet these requirements:

  • Hold a valid German passport.
  • Be between 18 and 35 years old.
  • Have health or medical insurance for your stay.
  • No criminal record, proven with a Führungszeugnis.
  • Show proof of funds, at least CAD $2,500 (around €1,900), upon arrival in Canada.

This work travel visa for Canada allows you to work anywhere in the country, making it a flexible option for young Germans eager to explore and gain international work experience. Our Summer & Winter placement programs might just be perfect for you!

Visa Categories and Max. Duration for German Citizens

German citizens can participate in the International Experience Canada (IEC) program up to two times, with each participation lasting up to 12 months under one work permit category at a time. However, repeat participation in the same category is not allowed. Therefore, applicants must choose from the following eligible categories:

  • Working Holiday: The most popular option, providing an open work permit allowing work anywhere in Canada.
  • Young Professionals: For career development with a specific employer.
  • International Co-Op: For students looking to complete internships as part of their studies in Germany.

For the 2024 season, there are 4,490 working holiday visas available for German citizens, though this number can be adjusted during the IEC season.

Participating in the IEC program with a working holiday visa Canada allows German citizens to explore Canada while gaining valuable international work experience.

Biometrics In Germany

To complete your biometrics for a Canada visa from Germany, you can visit any Visa Application Center (VAC) in Germany, such as those in Düsseldorf or Berlin.

If you live in Munich, you can also travel to Vienna, Austria, to complete this step. Canada allows you to complete your biometrics at any VAC worldwide.

If you’re applying from overseas, contact us, and our team will help you find the closest VAC for your location. This flexibility ensures you can fulfill this requirement wherever you are.

Applying Early From Germany For Your Working Holiday in Canada

When planning to move to Canada from Germany, remember it’s different from working within Europe, as you’ll need a work permit, often referred to as a “Working Holiday Visum”. This process takes time since you’re applying for work authorization from the Government of Canada.

Here are key steps to keep in mind for your Working Holiday Canada Germany application:

  • Prepare your documentation early.
  • Request a Führungszeugnis from Germany.
  • Be ready to travel to complete your Biometrics.
  • After submission, approval for your Canada work and holiday permit takes approximately 2 months.

Working Holiday Canada after Abitur: Start Your Adventure

Finished your Gymnasium and Abitur? Congratulations! Now, think about a working holiday in Canada.

Whether you’re 18 or 19, Canada offers great opportunities. Work at resorts, meet people from around the world and get a work permit with a reputable employer. It’s a chance to explore different industries before university or apprenticeships.

Stepwest helps German students transition to working abroad and . Gain practical experience and clarity about your career path.

Ready for your Canadian working holiday? Stepwest is here to guide you!

Working holiday Programs With Stepwest:

September - November

6 - 24 Months

CAD $1190

Ski Resort Program

Our Winter Resort Working Holiday program provides a great opportunity to secure employment before you arrive in Canada. Partnered with top Canadian ski resorts, we assist in job placement and guarantee staff accommodation while you're still in your home country.

May - June

6 - 24 Months


Summer Resort Program

Our summer resort program is perfect for experiencing the beauty of a Canadian summer firsthand. With various job opportunities, you can earn income while immersing yourself in Canada's wonders. Plus, you can even extend your stay for the winter season if you choose!

Year Round

12 Months

CAD $490

Canada Send Of Package

Our Canada Send Off Package helps you obtain your Working Holiday Visa, marking the start of an exciting journey. While job placement isn't included, it's a great way to begin your return to Canada affordably.

Working Holiday Canada after University or Fachhochschule: Transition to Work Life

Did you finish your studies right after university or Fachhochschule? Now might be the perfect time to transition from student life to working in Canada.

Working in Canada through one of our programs is a great way to kickstart your international career. You’ll meet people from all over the world and gain valuable work experience abroad, which will benefit your career and provide a rewarding personal experience.

Stepwest specializes in helping German graduates move to Canada from Germany to work and travel and obtain a work travel visa Canada. Gain practical skills and expand your global perspective with our guidance.

Ready to start your Canadian working holiday adventure? Stepwest is here to support you every step of the way!

How to Find a Job & Accommodation in Canada For German Citizens

When it comes to Canadian resort jobs, being proactive is crucial. Popular resorts such as Whistler, Banff, Jasper, and Lake Louise have two main hiring periods for each season: Summer and Winter.

For those applying for a working holiday visa Canada from Germany or seeking a Canada work and holiday experience, early applications significantly enhance your chances of securing a job in your preferred resort. Here are the recommended application deadlines:

Summer Season: Apply before February of the same year you plan to travel.
Winter Season: Apply before May of the same year you plan to travel.

Being organized pays off. The sooner you’re ready for interviews, the more positions you can apply for. If you tend to plan last minute, start thinking ahead to the next season in order to move to Canada from Germany.

Did you miss the Winter deadline? Explore Stepwest’s Summer Resort Working Holiday program. You can begin with a summer job and potentially extend your stay for the winter season!


The documents to apply for a working holiday visa and move to Canada from Germany are very simple. The ones that you need to pay special attention will be:


You must request a police certificate once you get your invitation to apply for the work permit for Canada.  Keep in mind that it will take a while for you to receive the certificate and it is only valid for six months after being issued, so do not apply until you have your invitation.

If you have lived outside of Germany for six months or more, Canada will request a police certificate from that specific country. But don’t worry, we’ve got your back here! We have worked with participants from more than 36 countries, so there are only a few certificates in the world that we have not done before!


You do not need medical insurance to apply for your working holiday visa, but you will need it once you are approved and ready to move to Canada from Germany. You will need to present proof of medical insurance to receive your work permit. Please click here to understand everything you need to know about IEC insurance and everything that needs to be covered!

Do not miss a thing, medical services in Canada are expensive, so getting good insurance is a must!

Want to Learn More?

Are you thinking about moving to Canada from Germany, but want to know more before taking the plunge? Get in touch to learn about our Working Holiday Programs, and how we can help you embark on the trip of a lifetime to Canada!


Do Germans need a visa to work in Canada?

Yes, you need a work permit – You can not work with an eTA (Electronic Travel Authorization). German citizens have access to International Experience Canada – a program focused on youth between the ages of 18 and 35 from Germany that allows them to work in Canada up to 12 months.

Do I need an employer in Canada to apply for the visa?

No for the Working Holiday visa, this is an open work permit, which means that you can work all over the country for up to 12 months.

Can I remain in Canada after my working holiday and travel after returning to Germany?

Yes, but you should apply for an extension as a visitor, even when germans do not need a visitor visa to travel to Canada. Having a valid eTA does not allow you to remain in Canada after your work permit expires. Make sure to apply for an extension as a visitor 30 days before your working holiday expires. As long as you submit your visitor extension application, you will be allowed to remain in Canada until you hear back from it.

What's the difference between an eTA and a Working Holiday for German citizens?

German citizens are eligible to apply for an eTA to travel to Canada up to 6 months as a visitor. This does not allow you to work in Canada. A working holiday visa will allow you to work in Canada like you are back home, for a limited period.

I am a German passport holder but currently working in a different country, can I still apply for a Working Holiday Canada?

Yes you can! Germany does not have a residency requirement in Germany so as long as you present a copy of your valid german passport and you provide all the required documents to Canada you could be eligible for this working holiday visa.

Do citizens of Germany must show a Police Certificate when applying for a working holiday for Canada?

Yes, you must request a Führungszeugnis – If you are in Germany you can request it online and it will be mailed to your home address.

If you are living outside of Germany you should contact your closest Consulate or Embassy to check how to request it from overseas.

Besides this, If you have lived in any other country for 6 months or more, Canada will require a police certificate from those other countries.

Is It Possible to Work for Only One Resort Season in Canada?

Yes, you can decide if you want to work during the summer or winter season, and if you need to leave after because you have plans back in Germany (for example, you’re going to University), you can do so easily.

The minimum stay for each season will always be at least six months, so make sure you apply early for your working holiday, that way you don’t have to wait for your work permit to travel and can secure your job far in advance.

Can I Participate More Than Once in a Work Program in Canada as a German Citizen?

Yes, but under a different work permit category. German citizens are allowed to participate in the IEC Program. If you already used your working holiday visa, you will be able to apply for:

Young Professionals – if you get a qualified job offer under NOC, 0, A or B in Canada.

International Co-op – doing an internship in Canada while studying back in Germany

Can I Work in Canada for a short permit With No Visa as a German Citizen?

Absolutely not. In Canada, if you are planning to work for a company, you MUST get paid and you need a work permit, that’s why Canada put the International Experience Canada program in place. Make the most of it! Plus, the good news is that it is super easy for German citizens to get an invitation so there really is no need to secure a permit.

When can I apply for the working holiday visa as a German citizen?

As long as there are spots available, you can become a candidate! Normally our recommendation applies as soon as the IEC season opens for the year (normally between December – January). Example during IEC 2024 the rounds of invitations (ITA) started on January 08th, 2024! Check the spots available at this time here:

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