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Choose Canada or New Zealand for study abroad and immigration?

Many friends compare Canada and New Zealand together when they think about studying abroad and immigration because both are traditional immigration countries. Compared with other developed countries, their immigration policies are better, and there are many choices of colleges and universities. There are comprehensive universities and technical institutes/colleges, so today we will compare the immigration paths of Canada and New Zealand based on the latest immigration policies.

Study Abroad Application

Study abroad application is our first step.

If you just want to immigrate with an ID card quickly, then you don’t need to pursue a comprehensive university with a high ranking. The first is that the English and academic requirements are high, and the second is that the theoretical majors are actually not easy to find employment.

Therefore, in both Canada and New Zealand, you can choose a polytechnic/college to complete technical courses, which is less difficult to apply for and easy to find a job after graduation.


To apply for the diploma course of a Canadian college, you must have a high school degree or above, an IELTS score of 5.5 or above, and the study time is generally 2 years. After graduation, you can get a 3-year work permit. Students with a college degree or above can also apply for research courses, which are generally 1-year, and there are a few 2-year courses. A 1-year course can get a 1-year work permit, and a 2-year course can get a 3-year work permit.

At present, Quebec Province has also introduced a policy of free college study. From September 2023, international students can also enjoy a discount of 0 yuan to study, and the cost is lower.

New Zealand

New Zealand’s polytechnics have junior college, undergraduate and master’s degree programs, and students can apply for corresponding courses based on their existing academic qualifications. According to different stages, the IELTS requirement ranges from 5.5-6.5 points.

It doesn’t matter if you can’t meet the language requirements. Schools in Canada and New Zealand have opened language classes for students who don’t pass the IELTS. After the course of the language class is over, you can enter the regular class.

Visa Difficulty

“Older” students who go to study in Canada and New Zealand should pay special attention to visas, especially Canada.

If you are an older student studying in a Canadian college, you must prepare your own study plan and other materials when preparing for the visa, and be able to explain the “reasonability of the materials” in order to pass the visa smoothly.

Of course, students who need to “study backwards”, for example, already have a bachelor’s degree and want to study diploma in Canada, can first apply with an offer higher than their own education, such as applying for a research paper or a master’s degree. After successfully obtaining a visa, they can then switch majors.

Compared with Canada, New Zealand’s visa difficulty is lower. The application for a study permit does not have too many obstacles to the recognition of immigration tendencies, as long as there is a reasonable study plan and sufficient financial preparations.

Spouse and children’s benefits during study abroad

When studying in Canada, spouses and children can accompany them to study, and they can enjoy free education and medical care in Canada without obtaining a permanent resident card. Minor children can enter public primary and secondary schools to receive free education.

New Zealand’s accompanying policy is relatively strict. Only those with a master’s degree or above, or a bachelor’s degree or GD in a long-term shortage of majors, can bring their families to live in New Zealand.

Major choice

Which major to choose for studying abroad is easier to stay? It depends on what occupations are in short supply in the destination country? Both Canada and New Zealand have official shortage occupation lists, such as IT, nursing, early childhood education, engineering, etc.

Work permit after graduation

After graduation, international students can apply for a work permit to stay and work in the local area. The work permit in Canada is determined by the time of studying abroad. One-year work permit for a 1-year course, and 3-year work permit for a 2-year course. Students who study undergraduate, master’s or doctorate in New Zealand can get a 3-year work permit.

Immigration policy

Whether it is Canada or New Zealand, after the study period is over and you graduate successfully, you have to get a work permit to find a job locally. A work permit is not a permanent residence status, but a visa to legally work locally. After getting a work permit and finding a job, you can start the next step of the immigration plan.


In Canada, the pathway to skilled immigration can begin after graduation. Canada has both federal and provincial immigration programs.

There are currently three categories of Federal Skilled Migration, namely:

  • FSW: Federal Skilled Worker technical class
  • FST: Federal Skilled Trade technical class
  • CEC: Canadian Experience Class experience class

– Provincial nomination

According to the economic development of each province in Canada and the various talents it needs, each province will have specific requirements. Getting a provincial nomination is equivalent to the government’s approval of your immigration application, provided that the working hours and language scores must meet the standards.

For example, the provincial government of Manitoba evaluates the applicant’s language ability, age, work experience, educational background, adaptability and risk review and then scores. It is more friendly to applicants who are older and whose English is weaker.

With the relaxation of prevention and control policies, the Canadian federal government’s 2022-2024 immigration plan shows that Canada plans to absorb about 432,000 permanent residents this year, while the total number of new immigrants, international students and temporary workers will exceed 500,000.

– Express Entry

The three federal skilled immigration programs are all included in EE. EE is a scoring system. The federal government will draw a “score line” and send invitation letters to all those who exceed the score line to invite them to apply for a green card. It should be noted that EE is only an application method, not an immigration project.

According to the latest invitation data on August 2, the minimum score for the invitation is 533 points, and the scores are from top to bottom, and a total of 2,000 places are required. However, the number of people with scores over 450 in the pool is close to 70,000! Therefore, people in the pool are still improving their scores, including education, first language, second language, local work experience, spouse’s education, spouse’s language, etc.

According to the current latest policy, the Department of Immigration will conduct additional targeted draws based on specific conditions (such as language/occupational categories) before the normal draws for ordinary unclassified categories.

For example, if the occupation you are engaged in is a local shortage occupation, such as preschool education, medical care, IT, engineering, etc., then you will have more chances of getting an invitation.

Of course, if it is not an applicant for a shortage of occupational categories, there is no need to worry. Although there is an additional targeted draw, the Immigration Department has not canceled the non-targeted invitation, so there is still hope. Of course, if the score is much lower than 400 points, then you can choose to require lower provincial nomination or other federal-level immigration projects.

New Zealand

New Zealand immigration is based on a point system. Applicants must score 160 points for skilled immigration before they can apply for immigration.

Among them, having a New Zealand local education, work experience can be added points.

According to New Zealand’s green shortage list, we can understand what kind of jobs are currently lacking and how to immigrate. As a branch of skilled immigration, the green list provides at least 3 ways:

  • Direct Immigration Application Class
  • WTR class
  • High Salary

Take the most familiar direct immigration application category as an example, it is a point system, and the mandatory conditions are: under the age of 56, with a bachelor’s degree, and an IELTS score of 6.5 (both A and G categories are acceptable). Other than that, it’s just scoring. Among them, local education, local work experience, experience in shortage industries and employment skills all have extra points.

When the above-mentioned total score reaches 160 points and meets the IELTS score of 6.5, you can submit an immigration application intention. The Immigration Bureau will put all the applications into a “pool” and regularly select the highest score for review. After confirmation, the approval will be issued Immigration invitation.

In comparison, Canada has different policies in each province, so you can choose the appropriate project according to your own needs. New Zealand’s advantage lies in its identity. New Zealand’s green card has no immigration supervision. It is called a “permanent return visa”. After obtaining the identity, even if you go to other countries in the future, this identity will not be a problem.

For more information about studying abroad and immigration, you can visit There are a great number of news and tips about studying abroad on the site.

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