Toronto Islands at night

Looking back on 18 months in Canada

Highlights of our Canadian Working Holiday This week another milestone was reached as we celebrated 18 months in Canada. As always the time has flown by and we wanted to take this opportunity to reflect on some of the best things we’ve done in the last 12 months. So here we go, in no particular order, 6 of our favourite things from this year: 1. Showing … Continue reading Looking back on 18 months in Canada

Our experience flagpoling at Niagara Falls

Activating our second IEC work permits at Rainbow Bridge, Niagara Falls An IEC working holiday visa can only be activated at a Port of Entry to Canada. This means that if you’re already in Canada you have to leave the country and come back in again. In 2014 we chose to do this by taking a trip to Seattle. This time we decided to go for the … Continue reading Our experience flagpoling at Niagara Falls

Royal Ontario Museum

8 things to do for free in Toronto

At work Stewart is known as the master of freebies due to our ability to sniff out a good bargain. Just last week whilst at High Park he suddenly disappeared as he made a beeline for a Lays crisps promo van! Since living in Toronto we’ve made the most of what’s on offer for free, saving us money (for more holidays), whilst still enabling us … Continue reading 8 things to do for free in Toronto

Gracie cat

What makes expats grumpy?

That time we got featured in The Telegraph When Rossi Thompson got in touch with us via Twitter (follow us here) to ask if we’d like to be interviewed for an article she was writing for The Telegraph we were pretty excited. When we discovered it was about what makes us grumpy as expats we weren’t sure we could help after all. Lack of decent chocolate was the only … Continue reading What makes expats grumpy?

Canadian working holiday eBook – recognition for Brown Bear!

Here at Brown Bear HQ we were recently honoured to be asked to write a contribution on our experiences for a Canadian working holiday eBook. The eBook in question is written by Gemma from the excellent Gemma’s website is full of useful tips and inspiration on travelling to Canada’s lesser known parts. Last year, her and partner JR went on a 5 month road trip … Continue reading Canadian working holiday eBook – recognition for Brown Bear!

Gardiner Expressway Toronto

Getting an Ontario Driver’s Licence

One of the next things we did after getting our new home was to get ourselves a Canadian driver’s licence. The amount of time you can drive on a UK licence in Canada depends on the province. In Ontario you only have 60 days, but in BC for example it’s 90 days. Fortunately for us the UK has an exchange agreement with Ontario, which as … Continue reading Getting an Ontario Driver’s Licence

Downtown Toronto

Finding accommodation in Toronto

Now that the fun of our travelling was over, we were back in Toronto and it was time to find somewhere to live before the ‘fun’ of working started! Rather than having a useful website like Rightmove, that allows you to easily search for properties and view photos, here you have to use Kijiji and Craigslist, which are more popular variants of the Gumtree style … Continue reading Finding accommodation in Toronto

La Casa Gelato vegemite ice cream

Getting started as workers in Canada

Our first day back in Vancouver was very productive, armed with our new work permits we set out to get ourselves sorted so we could start applying for jobs. Getting a SIN number Similar to a NI number in the UK, the Social Insurance Number (SIN) is essential if you want to work in Canada and is fortunately very easy to get your hands on … Continue reading Getting started as workers in Canada