From all of us at Lakeview, we would like to extend a warm welcome to all the newcomers. Enjoy the “Harbour City”.
Are you emigrating, moving or just new to Vancouver Island? Lakeview Homes would like to extend a warm welcome to you and offer assistance with various local resources and supports to help you get settled. We understand it can be a very daunting process. The Welcome BC Guide provides many useful tips.
When you first arrive to get a lay of the land and navigate around the new community, check out local maps in Google Maps, Bing, or Yelp .
There are some important basics when moving to Canada. You are required to apply for a Social Insurance Number. Below is a video of how to Apply.
You will not have any BC medical coverage for the first 90 days after your arrival. You need to obtain private medical coverage during that timeframe. Apply for Medical Services Plan (MSP), so you can see a doctor or access other health care services or see Video tutorial. Fair Pharmacare BC helps residents with the cost of eligible prescription drugs and medical supplies. To locate a family doctor use this directory . In the meantime, if you require medical assistance, use local walk-in medical clinics including; Medical Arts and the Caledonia Medical Clinics. The local hospital is Nanaimo Regional General Hospital. If requiring emergent medical attention dial 911. There is a 24/7 service of free health information by dialing 811. You can also visit Health Link BC for basic medical information, as well as, the Poison Control Centre for personal safety tips.
New drivers in BC
New residents can drive on their valid out-of-province driver’s license for up to 90 days, even if you also have an International Driving Permit. After that time, you must obtain a BC drivers license to continue driving legally. Most newcomers will need to take a written test, plus a driving test to obtain their BC drivers license. If you can prove you have at least 2 years total driving experience, you will not be required to participate in the Graduated License Program. The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC office) is located at 6475 Metral Drive or call 250-740-3460.
” Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life – and travel – leaves marks on you “. ~ Anthony Bourdain
Working in BC
The Immigrant Welcome Centre , the Government of Canada newcomer services or Intercultural Society are all excellent resources, and can assist you with various things such as working with Canada Service, which assists with job opportunities, workers and much more. If you are looking for employment, this video may help. You can also search the Government of Canada Job Bank. If you need help with learning the language, please connect with the language assessment. Or perhaps you need a translator?
Socializing in a new community
Wanting to connect with others? There are some fantastic connections can be made on several social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram . If you haven’t done it yet, getting out meeting new people, with like-minded interests can be fun and a great way to find groups based on similar interests using Meetup.com.
For more great resources for immigrants new to the community, click here.
Banking in our community has many possibilities and is very important to establish in order to pay for your expenses. You can check to see if your existing bank has a local office, or if you can manage your banking online. Learn about Canadian money and how managing your money in Canada, as well as a video on Canadian currency and how it operates. There are many local large banks and credit unions which you can open an account and use for your financial services including;
- Island Savings Credit Union (ISCU)
- Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC)
- Coastal Community Insurance
- Bank of Montreal
- Scotia Bank
- Royal Bank of Canada (RBC )
If we at Lakeview Homes can assist any further, please contact us directly!