Checklist for Newcomers - Landed Immigrant


First month - When you arrive in Canada

Congratulations, You’ve Arrived!

Hopefully you are getting comfortable in your new home. Here are some things you can do now to help your first three months go smoothly:

Get Organized

Set up a more permanent household/place of residence

Get to know your housing options (including renting, leasing and owning) and how to find the right neighbourhood for you with the RBC Finding Your Home site. Remember that it can take up to a couple of months from the time you begin your search to the time you can move into a rental unit.

Arrange phone and Internet service

Arrange Finances

Open a bank account (if you haven’t already)

If you haven’t already, start the process of opening a bank account. As part of your RBC Welcome to Canada Banking Package, we’ve eliminated the standard fees on a bank account so you’ll enjoy this service FREE.

Call 1-800-769-2511 and we’ll be happy to speak to you in the language of your choice

Banking Tutorials:

Opening your first bank account

Apply for credit

One of the easiest, most effective ways to start building a credit history is to get a Canadian credit card. Your credit history will help you qualify for a mortgage, a car loan or even start a business in the future.

In most cases, it’s a good idea for each adult in your family to have their own credit card account. That way, each person will establish a credit history, which can help later when you want to borrow a larger amount.

As part of your RBC Welcome to Canada Banking Package, you will enjoy a FREE credit card with no credit history required.

Call 1-800-769-2511 and we’ll be happy to speak to you in the language of your choice.

Banking Tutorial:

Build your Credit History

Apply for Services

Apply for a health card (if you haven’t already)

Visit the website for the Ministry of Health of the province or territory you’re moving to. There, you will find information about the documentation you will need (such as your birth certificate, passport, Confirmation of Permanent Residence and/or your permanent resident card) and how to get your health card as quickly as possible.

Apply for the Canada Child Tax Benefit

Call 1-800-387-1193

Apply for a Social Insurance Number (S.I.N.)

All Canadian citizens, newcomers and temporary residents who want to work in Canada and have access to government programs need a Social Insurance Number (SIN) — a unique number that identifies each individual. Applying for a SIN is easy to do through Service Canada, but you’ll need some documentation, such as:

3 - 12 months - When you arrive in Canada

You’re Starting to Get Settled

Now that you’re feeling a little more comfortable and have taken care of all the immediate needs, here are a few more things that you may want to look into:

Get Organized

Enroll your children in school

Regardless of which province you move to, your children will have the same access to education.

Children must be enrolled in a school in order to attend classes. To enroll your children, you will need their birth certificates and other identification (such as their Record of Landing, Permanent Residence Card, or passport). You may also be asked to bring immunization records and past school and health records. Visit your provincial/territorial Ministry of Education site to find out how, where and when enrollment takes place.

Get a valid driver’s licence

Driver’s licenses are issues in the province or territory where you live. Find out more about getting licensed to drive in Canada.

Connect with local community groups

Find a local community group that helps newcomers settle into their new life in Canada.

Evaluate Language Skills

Improve your language skills

Find out where the Language Instruction for Newcomers (LINC) assessment centre is in your community and register for language classes.

Learn business English

Among the many language courses provided by Costi are computer-assisted language programs, conversational classes, and business English. Learn More

Arrange Finances

Transfer funds back home

In Canada, there are a number of secure and convenient ways to transfer money to or from another country — through a financial institution, a money-transfer service and even Canada Post. As with any financial transaction, you’ll want to work with a reputable organization that you trust.

Your RBC Welcome to Canada Banking Package includes FREE online banking with access to RBC International Remittance as well as FREE personalized cheques, money orders and bank drafts

Banking Tutorials:

Send Money Overseas

After first year - When you arrive in Canada

You’ve made it through your first year!

You’re hopefully starting to feel more at home in your new country. Now is the time to start thinking about your long-term needs. As always, we’re here to help.

Financial Arrangements

Buying a home

In addition to providing you and your family with a place to live, a home is a valuable investment. To find out more about buying a home in Canada, finding a neighbourhood, comparing communities, settling in and more, check out our

Banking Tutorials:

Buying your first home

Find out what kind of monthly payment you can afford right now with these tools:

Mortgage Calculator

Rent or Buy Calculator

Saving for children’s education

If one of your goals is paying for a child’s education at a university, college, or other designated education, community college, vocational or technical institute, you may want to consider a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP). Like a Registered Savings Plan (RSP), all the earnings in the plan are tax-deferred until withdrawn. In addition, your contributions may qualify for the Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG), a government program that can add as much as $7,200 to the savings for your child’s education.

Banking Tutorials:

Saving for your children’s education

Helpful Link:

Education Cost Calculator

Protect your family, belongings and lifestyle

Insurance is an important part of financial planning that protects you and your family from the effects of unexpected events. By paying the relatively low cost of insurance premiums, you are protected against the much higher costs that you could face should you experience a misfortune

In Canada

Call 1-800-769-2511 and ask an RBC advisor for a General Insurance Needs Assessment.
Visit a Branch


RSP-Matic® Calculator

Banking Tutorials:

Protecting your family with insurance

Protecting your lifestyle with creditor’s insurance

Looking Ahead

Start your own business

In addition to providing advice, we offer a full range of business services including business banking or deposit accounts, payroll services and international trading.

We can also arrange for your business to accept credit card and debit card payments.

Call 1-800-769-2520 to speak with an RBC Small Business Advisor who has been specially trained to meet your business and cultural needs.

Banking Tutorials:

Understanding Banking in Canada

Starting a Business

Managing Risk

Consider becoming a Canadian citizen

Find out what is necessary to become a citizen. You can start preparing for some requirements, such as learning to speak English or French, even before you are ready to apply.

Sponsoring family to come to Canada

If you are a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident and are 18 years of age or older, you may apply to have eligible family members join you by acting as their sponsor. Becoming a sponsor is a serious commitment as you are taking financial responsibility for those family members when they arrive in Canada. The process for sponsoring family varies slightly, depending on how you are related to the other person or people.

To find out more, visit Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Retirement in Canada

It’s never too soon to think about how to make the most of your retirement years.

Banking Tutorials:

Saving for retirement


Retirement cash flow calculator