Make BC your next destination to work, live and play!
There are many opportunities for international job seekers to work in tourism in BC. Whether you're interested in snowboarding on Whistler's pristine slopes, acting as an adventure tour guide through Northern BC's wilderness, or bartending in one of Vancouver Island's world-renowned resorts, there are many diverse job and career opportunities in BC.
With Canada and BC facing potentially severe labour shortages in the future, employers will be looking outside of Canada for workers. If you're thinking of working in Canada, you will first need to obtain a work permit that gives you the legal ability to work in Canada. There are a number of different temporary and permanent immigration programs available, so learning about your options is a great place to begin your journey to BC. Here are a few tips to get your started.
Learn the basics
Visit the provincial government’s website, welcomebc.ca, to access in-depth and current information on all immigration programs, regions of BC, people and lifestyles, educational options, healthcare and other settlement services.
Taking courses and obtaining a certificate in your area of interest can help you get a job. Most entry-level positions do not require education, but in some cases specific industry certifications are needed and are considered some of the basic tools to start out. For example:
- Serving It Right: BC's mandatory self-study program for the responsible service of alcohol.
- FOODSAFE: Required for foodservice workers to learn about the dangers and prevention of food poisoning. This course is available online, by correspondence or in a classroom setting.
- WorldHost®: International recognized excellence training.
Programs for young people
If you are between 18 and 35 years of age, you may be eligible to participate in the International Mobile Youth Programs, which are designed for young people to gain international work experience, experience co-op opportunities, or have the flexibility to work while travelling. The Canadian government has agreements with more than 25 countries to allow the exchange of youth to work and/or study abroad, and young people can apply directly for a temporary work visa without an employer’s involvement.
Study in BC
Every year, the province welcomes more than 140,000 international students to study here, and there are opportunities to work off-campus when you are not studying. For more information, visit livelearnbc.ca. BC also offers world-class educational programs in tourism and hospitality; an excellent resource for this approach is the website studytourisminbc.com.
Get to know tourism
Learn all about British Columbia and its tourism regions as well as the many career options in each sector. Of course you’ll want to experience BC for yourself by visiting attractions, resorts and events, and by participating in the many activities that draw tourists here.
Practice your English
English is the common language in British Columbia for communicating in the workplace. Strengthening your fluency at speaking, reading and writing English is essential to getting started and moving up in the tourism industry. However, your ability to speak other languages is an asset, so don’t forget to add this to your résumé. Prepare your résumé in English and in a Canadian-style format. Visit Résumé, Cover Letter and Interview Tips. There are also many free templates that can be found online for Canadian résumés and cover letters.
Research the Job Market
Our website offers of a number of tips for job seekers that you may find useful as you start to research the job market and discover the type of employers and jobs available.
BC has a diverse and multicultural environment, and the tourism welcomes international workers. The industry recognizes the many benefits of having staff from different countries welcome their international guests.