South Korea and Canada Relations: South Korean Immigration to Canada

200000 +
Koreans are living in Canada

The full diplomatic relations of Canada with the Republic of Korea or South Korea (as it is commonly known) has started in 1963. Korean immigration to Canada began to accelerate in the 1990s, and almost all Korean immigration to Canada has been from South Korea. This article discusses how to immigrate to Canada from South Korea and more, so read on!

Seoul houses a Canadian embassy, and a Canadian consulate is in Busan. On the other hand, South Korea stationed its three consulates-general in Montreal, Vancouver, and Toronto and an embassy in Ottawa. South Korea is Canada’s seventh-largest trading partner, enhanced by a large number and increasing immigration activities from South Korea to Canada.

Published on October 11, 2023

Table of Contents

🍁 Why Did South Korean Immigrants Come to Canada

The 1990’s massive migration from South Korea to Canada was when Canadian unemployment was high, and income growth was low relative to the US. The migration was correlated with the exchange rate – the weakness of the Canadian dollar to the United States dollar. It meant one thing: South Koreans migrating to Canada as an investor using their savings would become richer than going to the US.

Another possible reason for the South Korean immigration growth in Canada was domestic anti-Americanism. And in the late 1990s, South Korean immigration to Canada became the country’s fifth-largest source of immigrants.

✈️ Canada Immigration in 2024 - Summary

Are you from South Korea and thinking of moving to Canada? Then you can choose from 80 different Canadian immigration programs. 

However, before applying for any of them, you’ll need to know the requirements to prepare; and the steps any foreigner who decides to immigrate to Canada from their origin country should take.

Korean Family Enjoying Canada Outdoors
South Koreans can choose from 80 different Canadian immigration programs.

🛩️ General Guide for South Korean immigration to Canada

Below are a few helpful guidelines for your easy Canada immigration process, adjustments, etc.

🏙️ The Best Cities in Canada for Immigrants

Recent World’s Best Cities Report indicated that the best cities for immigrants to live in Canada are Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary, Ottawa, and Edmonton. For most Korean-Canadians, this statement is true as most of them choose to settle in urban cities. Although, the recent record shows that some Korean-Canadians are choosing to move to smaller cities as economic opportunities change.

💸 The Cost of Living in Canada vs. South Korea

According to My Life Elsewhere, Canada is considered 22.3% more expensive than Korea. If you choose to live in Canada rather than stay in Korea, you would:

🍱 Pay 61.2% More for Restaurants

🍎 Pay 30.4% Less
for Groceries

🚌 Pay 9.3% More for Transportation

🏠 Pay 82.3% More
for Housing

👪 Pay 5.1% More
for Childcare

👚 Pay 7.4% Less
for Clothing

The good news about the Cost of Living in Canada vs. Korea is that most Korean immigrants eventually enjoy a better quality of living in Canada. Additionally, most South Korean immigrants to Canada do not usually purchase a home during their initial years in Canada. Hence, housing prices, which are more expensive in Canada than in South Korea, are something immigrants don’t find too concerning.

Another significant advantage of living in Canada vs. South Korea is that groceries and clothing are less expensive! It gives immigrants the chance to afford daily essentials and purchase new clothing without breaking the budget. Not to mention that according to statistics, the quality of life in Canada is 29.27% higher than in South Korea.

👯 The Korean-Canadian Community in Canada

Koreans make up one of the largest non-European ethnic groups in Canada and are mostly foreign-born, meaning most of them came from Korea. Most of them are in Ontario and British Columbia. The Korean-Canadian population is mostly women adults. Most of them are catholic and are English and Korean speaker rather than French.

✔️ The Benefits of Living in Canada

🙌 South Korean immigration to Canada: Some Tips to Adapting in Canada

Sometimes just knowing the existence of a Korean community in Canada isn’t enough. 

There may be instances where you’ll end up in a province, city, or environment with little to no Koreans around. 

The following tips can help you.

Korean Man applying for immigration
Learning how to speak English fluently is one of the first steps to adapting to the Canadian culture.

Tip 1. Practice the English Language

Learn English and speak it fluently for at least three to four days before a year or even months before you arrive in Canada. It will help you adapt to the culture quicker than someone with low English-speaking skills. 

Tip 2. Always Stay Positive

You may find your first week or months in Canada disappointing: having difficulty finding jobs and connecting to people right away. Sometimes the overall environment may leave you more home-sick than excited. It’s okay to feel those things, but you should always remind yourself that you’ve gotten this far, and if it weren’t for your particular set of accomplishments and skills, you wouldn’t have a chance to live in Canada in the first place.

Tip 3. Focus on Creating a Future

Finding a community is good, but most communities or the same ethnicities who live abroad tend to hold conversations based on the past and their home country. It’s okay to get out of your comfort zone and meet with new ethnicities, nationalities, and local Canadians who don’t come from your own country. Moving to Canada means looking towards the future, to your new home! Keep yourself open, friendly, and open-minded, just like a true Canadian would!

Tip 4. Get to Know Your Surroundings

Walk around your neighborhood, start conversations with your nearest coffee shop barista, attend community events, do volunteer work! It’ll help you expand your network and get to know your neighbors. Always find ways to connect easily with peers and meet new people whenever you can!

By now, you should already have better ideas on how to immigrate to Canada from South Korea. There’s nothing better than immigrating to a country that can not only offer you a better quality of life but endless opportunities! We wish you the best in your immigration to Canada.

Anjeonhan Yeohaeng and Hengunul-beegeyo! (Safe Travels and Goodluck!)

❓ How To Immigrate To Canada from South Korea FAQ

It can be challenging for Korean citizens to immigrate to Canada, but it’s not impossible. It’s no different for foreigners who wish to immigrate to any other country in the world.

Generally speaking, in this year, a solo candidate without dependents must have a minimum of CAD12,960 saved for permanent residency. For couples, you will need to prepare CAD16,135 to settle in Canada.

Disclaimer: This only applies to the overall immigration fees without the cost of living, flights, etc.

Express Entry is the fastest way to immigrate to Canada. Although, you can also consider the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) as Canadian provinces are continuously nominating foreign workers for permanent residency.

Yes, you can immigrate to Canada even without a job offer, contrary to what other people think. Canada welcomes and gives opportunities to foreigners to immigrate to Canada without a job first.

Learn more about immigration to Canada:

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