How To Become A Truck Driver In Canada In 5 steps
June 15, 2023
Are you dreaming of a career in truck driving in Canada? Do you want to explore this beautiful country's vast landscapes and highways while earning a good living? If so, we have compiled a list of information that you’ll need if you want to become a truck driver in Canada.
Canada covers a whopping 8.9 million square kilometers - and with the 4th largest land mass in the world - it’s easy to imagine why truck driver jobs in Canada are a sought-after profession.
Like the rest of the world, Canada relies on on-road travel to transport essential goods and products to the towns and cities dotted around the country. Truck driving in Canada is at the forefront of this industry. Truck driving in Canada is an evergreen industry that operates across all the different seasons throughout the year.
The challenges associated with becoming a truck driver in Canada are continuously changing. Only the most serious and dedicated drivers can create long-standing careers in the industry.
The Canadian worker population is aging and retiring early, creating many opportunities for truck driver jobs in Canada. There are several ways to become a truck driver in Canada. Provincial Nominee Programs are usually the most suitable immigration visa pathways to ensure you become a truck driver in Canada.
With the growing importance of global supply chains and logistics as a facilitator of global trade, truck driving in Canada has become a lucrative industry. Want to earn a living as a truck driver in Canada? Here are 5 easy-to-follow steps about how to become a Truck Driver in Canada!
Step 1: Check Your Eligibility to Apply
Before embarking on your journey to become a truck driver in Canada, it's crucial to understand the requirements and eligibility criteria. The first step is to ensure you meet the necessary qualifications. The requirements to be a truck driver in Canada may vary slightly depending on the province you choose to work in, but there are some common factors to consider.
Ensuring that you meet the criteria for the jobs you wish to apply for and aligning yourself with a Provincial Nominee Program positions you in the right direction if you meet the criteria needed to immigrate, work and live in Canada.
What Are The Requirements To Be A Truck Driver In Canada?
Apart from the basic qualifications mentioned above, there are specific requirements you need to fulfill to work as a truck driver in Canada. These include:
- Completing a recognized truck driving training program
- Obtaining a certificate of completion
- Take a medical examination to ensure you are fit for the job
Please note that some provinces might have additional requirements such as age restrictions and language proficiency. Therefore, it's advisable to research the specific regulations of the province where you intend to work.
According to Canada’s Job Bank, Canada's official job search platform, Transport drivers in Canada fall within National Occupational Classification (NOC) code 73300. Employment requirements for NOC 73300 include:
- Completion of secondary school, high school, or an equivalent
- On-the-job training and experience are required
- Completion of a relevant training course
- A Class 3 or D driver's license is required for straight-body trucks
- A class 1 or A license is required for long-body combination vehicles
- Air brake endorsement is a requirement for drivers who will be operating vehicles with this equipment installed
- Transportation of dangerous goods certification is required (if necessary for the job)
It is important to know the requirements for the jobs you apply for and ensure that you possess all supporting documents before applying to any job applications to ensure you are perceived as well-qualified.
This make your job application more likely to succeed. Another good consideration would be to inquire about Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) requirements for the jobs you are looking into - as this will be required for many roles.
Step 2: Find a Job Offer
Once you have determined your eligibility and obtained the necessary qualifications, the next step is to find a job offer in Canada. A job offer is a crucial requirement for most immigration pathways in Canada. It showcases a demand for your skills and that you have a genuine opportunity to work as a truck driver in the country.
There are several ways to search for truck driver jobs in Canada which include consulting:
- Online job portals
- Industry-specific websites
- Recruitment agencies that provide valuable resources
Networking and connecting with professionals in the trucking industry can also open doors to potential job opportunities. Researching the job market and understanding the demand for truck drivers in different provinces is essential to maximize your chances of finding a suitable job offer.
The next vital step would be to secure a job offer. Some exceptional platforms are available for foreigners looking for employment opportunities in Canada. Some job offers would require an LMIA, which your prospective employer would provide. Learn more about the 4 steps to finding a job in Canada.
Check the requirements with a certified Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) before finalizing your applications to prospective employers.
Top Canadian Job Sites
- Job Bank Canada is a Government listing platform that showcases requirements and job opportunities - Create a profile and apply to many transportation and truck driver jobs in Canada.
- Linkedin is a great place to use to network and explore job opportunities - although LMIA requirements will ordinarily not be showcased on this platform
- Indeed Canada is a valuable resource with many jobs available within this field
Step 3: Choose a Canada Immigration Visa Pathway
Once you have secured a job offer, explore the various Canada immigration visa pathways available to truck drivers. Canada offers several options for foreign workers, each with its requirements and benefits. Understanding these pathways will help you choose the most suitable route for your immigration journey.
Express Entry System
The Express Entry system is a popular pathway for skilled workers looking to immigrate to Canada. It is a points-based system that assesses your eligibility based on age, education, work experience, and language proficiency.
The most suitable Express Entry system programs that truck drivers can use to apply include the:
Learn more about how to apply for Express Entry System programs.
Provincial Nominee Programs
Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) are another option, allowing provinces to nominate individuals with specific skills or qualifications. Other Canada immigration visa pathways that truck drivers can use should they be eligible to apply to include the following:
- Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP)
- Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)
- Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP)
Atlantic Immigration PilotThe Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP) is aimed at skilled workers who want to settle permanently in one of Canada's four Atlantic provinces:
Should you be successful in your application through the AIP you will be granted permanent residency status in Canada and your chosen province. Find out more about the eligibility requirements of the AIP.
Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)
The Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) is a community-driven immigration visa pathway created to address labor market gaps in towns and smaller cities in Canada. Employers in select or participating communities are enabled to post job opportunities and hire foreign immigrants.Learn more about the participating communities, eligibility requirements and how to apply for the RNIP.
Temporary Foreign Worker Program
The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) is created for employers who want to hire foreign workers within a broad range of job opportunities. The important part of the hiring process for TFWP is applying for an LMIA. LMIA indicates that no Canadian or permanent resident was able to fill the open job post.
Step 4: Gather and Submit the Required Documentation
Once you have selected the appropriate immigration pathway, it's time to gather and submit the required documentation. The documentation process can be complex and time-consuming, so it's essential to be well-prepared and organized.
Some of the common documents you may need to provide include a:
- Valid passport
- Educational certificates
- Proof of work experience
- Language proficiency test results
- A valid job offer letter
- Police clearance document
- Medical clearance document
It's crucial to ensure that all your documents are accurate, complete, and meet the specific requirements set by the immigration authorities.
Step 5: Wait for Your Processing Time
After submitting your application and supporting documents, it's time to wait for your processing time. The processing time varies depending on the immigration pathway you have chosen and other factors, such as the volume of applications. It's important to be patient during this period and avoid unnecessary follow-ups that may delay the process further.
Once you have finalized your application, you must wait to see if you receive an Invitation to Apply. Once received, you must collect all of your required documents and submit them to finalize your application. Additionally, you have limited time to complete this step.
While you wait, it's a good idea to familiarize yourself with the province where you will work as a truck driver. Each province in Canada offers unique opportunities and benefits for truck drivers. Some provinces, such as Alberta, Ontario, and British Columbia, have a high demand for truck drivers and offer excellent job prospects and competitive salaries.
Which are the Best Provinces for Truck Driver Jobs in Canada?
According to Canada’s Job Bank, the two provinces with the most job opportunities for truck drivers in Canada are Prince Edward Island and Manitoba. Furthermore, Trukademy Canada Inc, one of Canada’s leading truck driver training institutes, lists the following provinces as having favorable job prospects for truck drivers:
Canada, a Trucker’s Paradise
Canada is known for its vast landscapes, picturesque scenery, and well-maintained highways. For truck drivers, it's a paradise waiting to be explored. The country offers diverse job opportunities, competitive salaries, and a high standard of living. Whether you prefer the hustle and bustle of city life or the tranquility of rural areas, Canada has something to offer for every truck driver.
After experiencing Covid-19 pandemic-related setbacks and protests sparked by travel restrictions, the Canadian trucking industry has bounced back. Trade and commercial transport traffic across the US-Canada border has risen back to pre-pandemic levels according to the US Bureau of Transportation Statistics. Job prospects for truck drivers are good among all but two Canadian provinces (Quebec and British Columbia), according to Canada’s Job Bank.
Now that you have a roadmap to becoming a truck driver in Canada, it's time to take the first step. Start by checking your eligibility, securing a job offer, and choosing the right immigration pathway. With determination and the right resources, you can turn your truck driving in Canada dream into a reality. To assist you with ensuring your eligibility to apply and the entirety of the application process, we recommend you consult with one of our RCICs. Start your journey to show off your truck driving skills in Canada by learning how to become a truck driver in Canada today!
What is Canada's Annual Average Base Salary for Truck Drivers?
The annual average base salary for truck drivers in Canada varies depending on factors such as experience, location, and the type of trucking job. However, truck drivers in Canada can expect to earn an average annual base salary between 46,800 CAD and 65,754 CAD, according to Canada’s Job Bank.
Which Province Gives the Least Opportunities for Truck Drivers in Canada?
While there are opportunities for truck drivers in every Canadian province, some provinces may have lower demand than others. Provinces like Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, and Labrador may have fewer job opportunities for truck drivers due to their smaller populations and limited industries.
However, it's important to remember that the demand for truck drivers can change over time, and it's always advisable to research the current job market before making any decisions.