Please review the frequently asked questions we’ve compiled for international trainees. Additional useful information (e.g. living in Toronto) can be found in the Information for New Trainees section.
Not yet a trainee? Visit Undergraduate & Medical Students, Graduate Students, or Postdoctoral Fellows, to find out how to apply.
If you are an International Student/Fellow/Visitor, please ensure that you obtain a work permit. This will allow you to work in Canada. Please do not arrive in Canada with a Visiting Visa.
Once you have a valid Work Permit, you may apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN). The SIN is a nine-digit number used for administration by the Canadian government. You require a SIN to work and to receive government benefits in Canada. To apply, visit an office of Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), complete a form and provide proof of your identity and status in Canada. This will require a passport with employment authorization or student visa; a letter from your employer is useful.
More information can be found online at http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/sin/apply/how.shtml, including how to apply from outside of Canada.
You must open a bank account that will be used by payroll to deposit your pay. You will need your SIN and/or passport with work permit and proof of address.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada Information on Banks and Financial Institutions
The Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) covers all your essential diagnostic and treatment services.
Generally, to be eligible for Ontario health coverage you must:
OHIP coverage normally becomes effective three months after the date you establish residency in Ontario. The ministry strongly encourages new and returning residents to purchase private health insurance in case you become ill during the OHIP waiting period.
For details about applying for OHIP, visit the Ontario Health Insurance Plan website.
Health Care Connect refers Ontarians who don’t have a physician to a family health care provider who may be accepting new patients. Visit the Health Care Connect website for more information.
Your foreign driver’s license is valid for three months after your arrival. In order to obtain an Ontario driver’s license, you have to pass a knowledge test, a vision examination and a road test (holders of licenses obtained in some countries are exempt). A driver’s license also serves as a picture ID card. Visit the Ministry of Transportation website for more information.
Tax information can be found on the Canada Revenue Agency website.
The housing service at U of T contains useful information.
All newspapers have a classified advertisement section with housing information:
The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) is a quick, convenient and safe way to get around Toronto.
If you are new to Ontario, you can find answers to common questions about your new home on www.Settlement.Org