Become an intern in Canada – Work in Canada without Working Holiday Visa


Canada is indeed a magical world of its own, holding hectares of untamed wilderness and a handful of appealing metropolitan cities. Surely, Canada claims the top positions of many travel bucket lists of many young travelers who are seeking for a meaningful working experience abroad. This shouldn’t be a problem for the world’s second largest country to offer space for everybody. But unfortunately, it is. Not because of the missing space, but due to immigration restrictions.

 Whoever planned to intern or work and travel in Canada for a certain amount of time, had to apply for one of the popular Working Holiday Visa. The visa is limited and not available for all applicants. But no need to worry, after all, there is still an alternative way to do an internship in Canada!

The alternative to an internship in Canada

As charity intern in Canada you will work voluntarily in a registered charity. You can choose to work in two different types of placements:

Internship in rural areas:


If you consider yourself to be the outdoor-loving kind of type, you should choose to work in one of the wilderness placements in British Columbia Lower Mainland or BC Interior, the Rockies or Vancouver Island. In different projects you will support charities in their efforts to conserve flora and fauna. Accommodation is included in the program fee, meals may or may not be included, depending on the project. The program is similar to a farm stay in Canada where accommodation and food is provided, but the difference is, that you usually work closely and in support of the communities.

Internship in urban areas:


If you need to be surrounded by many international people and you need the vibrant buzzing lifestyle, city placement program in charity organizations will offer you many fulfilling opportunities in Vancouver, Toronto, Calgary, Ottawa, Montreal or Quebec City. City placements are similar to internships and don’t cover accommodation and meals.

To be an intern in Canada is a unique experience,

as in either city and rural placement you will be placed for 4-16 weeks at a federally registered charity. In the city placement you will either support specific projects in a charity focusing on comprising activities in Administration, Event Management, Fundraising, Marketing and PR or in social or environmental programs. The program furthermore allows students to practice their English or French in a real social context, depending on the location of the project.

Which visa shall I apply for?

Participants may do a Internship Program with a C50 Work Permit. Here's what you need to know: 

  • need to be 18 years and above
  • only in federally registered charities
  • applicants don't need to be students
  • no part time job on the side
  • application on arrival in Canada

Any differences to an standard internship?

In general gives participants many of the same work opportunities as they would have had as an intern, but with fewer restrictions and with all placements done at federally registered charities. You can choose to work in charities in different working fields matching you interests or studies and you will be accepted a full team member. In addition, you can earn credits that can be allowed for you studies. But different to a standard internship placement in Canada, the program is not as flexible with regards to branches of your interest. For visa purposes, it has to be demonstrated, that each Internship placement is work that normally wouldn’t be done, that it is non-competitive, and that isn’t taking an opportunity away from a Canadian. Because of these requirements, Internship Placements are based around “projects” - special groups of tasks that are arranged specifically for you to do.

A plus: this program does not require participants to be a student and you don´t need to apply for a visa before arrival. It is open for all ages from 18 years old. This program is perfect for university students or young adults with related work or experience and/or education or for any other tourist, of any age, looking for a unique working vacation experience in Canada. If you are a passionate person and you are eager to learn and work with professionalism and adaptability, the Internship Program is your chance to experience life in Canada.