How to Move to Canada as an Athlete

2700 + immigrants
in Canada are working as athletes, coaches, officials and referees across the entire country

Along with the people in the business sector, those who work in the sports industry, such as athletes and coaches may come to Canada through the Federal Self-Employed Program.

Not only is getting a job offer the only way to work and live in Canada, you also have other immigration alternatives for securing your Canada visa regardless of whether you are an athlete or not.

The demand for athletes in Canada has made it an eligible profession under the NOC list (National Occupation Code In Demand List) for immigration. 

This is fantastic news for foreign workers in the athletics field in search of an opportunity to immigrate to Canada!

Check our work in Canada guide to know more about job opportunities in Canada for foreigners.

Published on September 27, 2023

Table of Contents

Immigration Programs for Athletes

A foreign athlete can immigrate to Canada under the Federal Self-Employed Program. Athletes and professionals in the sports areas, such as coaches and referees, or if you engage in various cultural activities may also use the Self-Employed Program to come to Canada. 

Selection Points for Athletes Immigration (Requirements)

Want to know the selection points for foreigners who wish to move to Canada as an athlete? Check out the maximum points you may be able to receive for the Self-Employed Program in the list down below:

CanadaCIS: Immigrant Athletes Selection Criteria Point System
Canada supports immigrants. You can become one of them — move to Canada as an athlete.
How Can I Start My Immigration?

Consider the Federal Self-Employed Person class if you are contemplating moving to Canada as an athlete or coach. 

This program is focused on self-employed migrants who want to come to Canada as full contributors to Canadian culture, the arts, or sports.

Here are the TEER Codes for eligible candidates in the sports industry:

53200 Athletes

53201 Coaches

53202 Sports Officials and Referees

50012 Program Leaders and Instructors in Recreation, Sport, and Fitness

To meet the criteria for the program, applicants must meet the following:

  1. Must have a working history, as shown by taking part in either international-level cultural or sports activities or self-employed with an occupation of cultural or athletic activities.
  2. Must exceed the minimum score of 35 points out of 100
  3. Pass medical and police record checks
  4. Provide Proof of Funds

If you can achieve more than the minimum score needed for self-employed individuals, you may be eligible for the Self-Employed Program.

Which is The Best City for an Immigrant Sportsperson?

It may be tough for anybody, even athletes, to choose the best city in Canada to call home. Look no further, since we’ve already done the hard work for you down below:

Best Canadian Cities for Living

Montreal was ranked the top city in Canada for holding sports events, with Quebec City and Edmonton following, making it the 3 perfect cities in Canada for athletes. At the other end of the spectrum, Canada’s largest city, Toronto, has 32 as its total number, including nine international sports events.

Check out our list of top 10 sports cities in Canada:

Each of these cities are great for athletes due to being popularly known for their yearly/seasonal international sporting events!


Quebec City









Job Opportunities for Sportspeople in Canada

There are thousands of job opportunities in Canada for anyone in the sports industry! The most common occupations and their average salary include:

Immigrant Baseball Coach in Canada
Several sport professions in Canada include Athletes, Coaches, Referees, and more!
Why Should I Move to Canada as an Athlete: Top Benefits

Immigrating to Canada as an Athlete holds plenty of benefits! Not sure what advantages Canada can offer? Allow us to provide you with several reasons why you should consider moving to “The Great White North”, down below:

Benefits for Newcomer Athletes

Canada is the perfect place for athletes! Want to know why? The entire country is a sportsperson’s playground! From hiking, canoeing, skiing, snowboarding, biking, and so much more, almost every inch of the country has an option for athlete’s to enhance and strengthen their stamina.

Some athletes are provided year-round free physical check-ups to keep their health in check before a big game!

Some perks of working in Canada as a professional athlete or coach come with free gym membership and training.

Professional sportsmen may also be provided various ways to receive financial assistance.

For permanent resident professional athletes who want to acquire a Canadian Citizenship and remain in Canada for good, your application may be given with the opportunity to be fastened.

Coming to Canada as a sportsperson might seem like a crazy idea, especially since there’s plenty of athletes already in the industry, but it’s still a great opportunity for you to make a difference in your career and provide a chance for Canada to be brought into the Olympic spotlight!

Learn more about immigration to Canada:

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