Winter Jobs in Canada in 2020
April 7, 2021
While International Experience Class (IEC) applications have been put on hold until further notice, you can still create and submit your application. When the process opens back up, if you want a job in Canada in 2020, the last place you want to be is at the back of the IEC queue. Permit holders who secured their IEC working holiday visas before the national lockdown have been allowed to travel to Canada and take on the responsibilities of their summer jobs.
Many would describe a working holiday in Canada as one of the best experiences of their lives, summer or winter there are numerous job opportunities available, not to mention an entirely different world to explore. Stick around long enough and see the changing of the seasons in 2021 as the snow will begin to melt, the fields go from white to green and hundreds of little flowers blossom all over the country. An IEC working holiday visa is valid for six months. You can work for multiple employers during that time, which means you can travel and see the country in between jobs! If you are eligible for the IEC, it may not be a bad time to start thinking about getting your ducks in a row so that when you get the green light, you can book a ticket and fly to Canada.
Popular Winter Jobs in CanadaThe build up to December brings a whole load of seasonal job opportunities ripe for the picking. As the country ramps up to Christmas, so does their retail industry, after all, it’s the one time a year nearly everyone gets a present! When the snow begins to fall in October, it means ski resorts start to fill up as Canadians and tourists from all over the world come to enjoy the thick snow and extensive skiing slopes. These annual happenings create numerous seasonal opportunities, typically reserved for young travellers. With a working holiday visa, you can work for short or limited contracts in the following positions:
Ski & Snowboard InstructorSo you need to be fairly adept at skiing or snowboarding to be an instructor, and you will also need to hold a level 2 certificate recognized by the ISIA. If you are a skilled skier or snowboarder you could also arrange to do the course in Canada before you start working, you can do the CSIA or CASI Level 1 and be ready to take on one of the thousands of job opportunities available at this time of the year. A novice instructor will make around $18 an hour but as soon as you have some experience you will be making over $25 an hour.
Snow Park AttendantThis is a broad term, but essentially you can think of it as maintenance. Making sure safety equipment is in place, helping fix problems as they pop up around the resort, operating the ski lifts. You will typically only work 4 days a week for 12 hour shifts and earn around $14 an hour.
DishwasherWhile it may not be the most glamorous of jobs, it pays fairly well, $15 an hour, and no one bothers you. Earn what you need to have an incredible experience in the Great White North.
Food & Beverage ServerFrom ski resorts to small town restaurants, everyone is on holiday so a lot more people are eating out. Waiters are in very high demand during the christmas season as regular staff are worked overtime to meet demand and extended operating hours. This is where you can come to the rescue, make $13 an hour (excluding tips) and often save on the cost of cooking by taking home free meals.
Package HandlerSanta and his reindeer are out and independent courier companies are in. Because the holidays are prime shipping season, handlers are more in demand. You will typically only be expected to work 20 hour per week, which leaves a lot of time for fun. Wages are around $16 an hour and keep in mind, you will need to be able to lift heavy objects up to as much as 35lbs.
Retail WorkerA lot of shopping is done online these days, but a lot of people love to shop the Christmas specials. There are numerous opportunities in retail including cashiers, gift wrappers, stocking and even baking. If you can deal with crazy, the pay isn’t too bad. Wages typically vary between $15 and $18 an hour depending on the store.
Delivery Truck DriverAll those packages we spoke about above need delivering. Retail stores also do delivery in Canada, and so higher volumes requires more delivery drivers. It’s a quieter job with less interaction required and pretty good wages. Delivery drivers are typically paid around $15.50 an hour. Just make sure you have a warm jacket for this position!
Bar AssistantAs long as you don’t mind late nights and working weekends, you will earn a great salary in a bar. Aside from the basic wage of $13 an hour, Canadians are generally very good tippers once they have had a few beers or glasses of wine. Previous experience will help you alot in landing better shifts and therefore maximizing your earning potential. A bar over the holiday season is a gold mine for a young traveller, just waiting to be discovered.
Spa WorkerSpa workers make around $16 an hour in Canada. All you have to do is general housekeeping tasks including cleaning and laundry. Canada has beautiful spas, especially in the Rockies.
Hospitality WorkerWe are listing this as a separate position from food and beverage servers because Canada’s resorts often have speciality programs aimed at young people who want to work specifically in ski resorts, and have an extended list of responsibilities but also provide additional support. For example many resorts provide lodging for their staff at the fractional cost of one hours worth of pay from their day's wage, which will be around $18 an hour! So you’re paying far below average for accommodation and earning a better salary than if you worked as a waiter. The cost of living isn’t too high here in Canada, but being smart with your money will allow it to take you a lot further around our beautiful country.
Working Holiday Visa RequirementsTo apply for a working holiday Visa, you will be required to:
- Be a citizen of one of the participating countries in the IEC programs, if your country is not participating in the IEC program, you may be able to use a registered organization (RO);
- Be under the age of 35;
- Create an online profile;
- Have a minimum of $2,500 to cover your initial expenses;
- Have health insurance for the duration of your stay;
- Be admissible to Canada;
- Create an online profile;
- Give biometrics at your local Canadian consulate; and
- Hold a valid passport or travel document.