Congratulations! You have finally achieved your goal to live and work in a prosperous Canadian province. After going through the stringent immigration process for skilled workers, here you are ready to conquer life in one of Canada’s flourishing communities.
Now, the question you have to face is this: How do you adapt to your life in a new country?
A new chapter
Moving to another country can be both exciting and a tad terrifying, especially if you have no family or friends already residing there. You would be facing this new chapter in your life alone. New places, new faces, and new challenges await your move to a country that is not your own.
It is a good decision, though, that you have chosen Quebec as your destination of choice. As the second-most populous province in Canada, you can expect that there will be enough action around you that will keep you preoccupied and entertained. With over a million lakes and rivers – including St. Lawrence River, one of the longest rivers in the world – you can look forward to a thriving community that’s close to nature you can integrate into.
The province welcomes about 55,000 immigrants a year, so you can expect a host of immigrant-friendly services that you can avail yourself of. The government of Quebec extends these services to newcomers like you so you can feel welcome.
The first few months would normally be the hardest for first-time immigrants as there are still growing pains. Adjusting to the climate, the culture, and a new daily routine is something that you must go through. However, don’t let your worries overtake you, and read on to know more about how you can enrich and improve the new life you’ve chosen.
Here are the top tips that you can follow to better adapt to your new life in Quebec:
1. Do your research before leaving for Quebec
Preparation is key. Before you jet off to Canada and settle into your life in Quebec, make sure that you do your homework.
Do some research about the place that you will live in. There are many resources online that can give you updated and accurate information on Quebec. The Quebec government makes it easy for new immigrants to integrate themselves into Quebec society through helpful guides that can be found online.
First and foremost, you should be clear about what you need to do upon arrival on Canadian soil. Read up on everything that can help you successfully integrate into Quebec society so you can avoid confusion and misunderstandings. Take advantage of the detailed guide that the government has prepared on learning about Quebec.
You should also take the time to learn about the climate, living in Quebec and the costs of living, healthcare services and the like.
2. Set goals
List down what you want to achieve in your new life in Quebec. Set personal or professional objectives that you can return to when everything seems to be in limbo. You can strive to perfect your French, get promoted at work, or be an active member of a local group.
Whatever it is, goals will help you focus and live each day with determination and intention. Make sure to take active steps to realize these goals and celebrate each time you make progress.
3. Be realistic
Living alone in a foreign land isn’t a walk in the park for many. Accept the fact that you may get homesick. This is normal, but do not dwell on it. Try to create a new routine that will make your daily life as interesting as possible.
Just don’t forget to keep the communication lines open. With the help of modern technology, keeping in touch with friends and family back home has been made easier. A quick chat or call once in a while will help ease your longing for home.
You should also go out and explore the community. There are many attractions and local places that you can discover. Try to savor local cuisine, go to cultural shows and museums, or check if there are any volunteer programs that you can join. This will also open doors to new friendships and expand your social network.
4. Learn the language
Immigrating to Canada means you also need to have a good command of the French language. It is actually a part of your screening process, so it is best to study and master it if you want to have a smoother transition in your new neighborhood and country.
Quebec is predominantly a French-speaking community so it best that you arrive there knowing how to speak the common tongue. It will help you expand your network quickly and aid in your professional path. You can take advantage of the French language courses that the government offers to perfect your language skills, too.
5. Create a comfortable space
One of the most important aspects of moving to another country is choosing where to settle. Quebec has 17 regions to choose from and choosing your housing can be quite a challenge. Not to worry, though, because there are housing search techniques that you can look up in the Quebec website to help you settle comfortably while saving you time, money, and resources.
When you’ve finally found a place to settle in, make sure that it is as comfortable as possible. It doesn’t have to be a palatial suite. Regardless of the size, the important thing is that you make it cozy so you can have a cocoon of comfort when you get home.
Putting some familiar items like a stuffed toy, your favorite pajamas, or special keepsakes can make your place feel more like home. You can also put up family pictures or snapshots of friends and loved ones around your space.
A home away from home
Your choice to settle in Quebec is something that may not be easy at first. However, if you make a conscious decision to make it work for you, then you will do all you can to improve the quality of life that you have there. With the abovementioned tips, you can start your way to creating an enriching life in another country.
Besides, home is where the heart is. If you learn to love the life that you’ve chosen, then home is wherever you may be.
Bevan Berning is an Immigration professional and owner of Pathway Visas, an Immigration Agency dealing mostly with skilled immigration to Canada and Australia. Bevan’s enthusiasm for the industry has kept in the Immigration field for the past seven years. Bevan is South African by birth and has been residing in Dubai for the past eight years.