An international move is an exciting adventure that requires meticulous planning and organization. As a Canadian relocating abroad, there are essential documents you need to gather to ensure a smooth and hassle-free transition. These documents are crucial in your move, from immigration and customs procedures to essential legal and financial matters. In this blog, Matco’s International Movers in Calgary will provide an overview of the ten key documents you typically need for an international move, helping you confidently prepare for your journey.

#1. Your Passport

Your passport is your primary identification document for international travel. Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your planned departure date, as some countries have this requirement for entry. If your passport is nearing expiration, renew it well before your move to avoid any last-minute complications. Your passport should ideally be valid for as long as possible, especially if you won’t be applying for citizenship in your new country.

#2. Visa and Work Permits

Different countries have specific visa and work permit requirements for Canadians intending to live and work within their borders. Depending on your destination, you may need a tourist visa, work visa, residency permit, or other types of documentation. Research the visa requirements for your target country and apply for the necessary permits as early as possible, as visa processing times can vary.

Without a visa or work permit, you may not even be permitted entry into the destination country. These documents are critically important, and should be planned well in advance. Your Calgary international movers will be knowledgeable about many countries and their visa requirements and will work with you to ensure you have all the proper documentation.

#3. Residence and Rental Agreements

If you already have a place to stay in your new country, gather all the necessary documentation for your home or rental agreement. This includes lease contracts, utility bills, and any other relevant paperwork. These documents may be required for immigration and customs procedures and for setting up utilities and other services at your new address.

If you haven’t arranged a new place, bring any documents needed to secure a new residence. This may include rental references, credit reports, etc.

#4. Your Employment and Financial Records

Keep copies of your employment contract, salary statements, and other financial records that might be required for employment verification or tax purposes in your new country. These documents can also be helpful when opening a bank account, applying for loans, or other financial services.

While paper copies may be required for verification purposes, it’s wise to keep digital copies in case of an accident or loss.

#5. Your Medical Records and Vaccination Certificates

Obtain copies of your medical records, including vaccination certificates, to ensure continuity of healthcare in your new country. Some countries may require specific vaccinations for entry, so check the vaccination requirements well in advance and ensure you are up-to-date with any necessary immunizations.

In some cases, you may be unable to access your country’s online health portal outside the country’s territory. Check any territorial requirements before your move, and make appropriate preparations if needed.

#6. Your Driver’s License and International Driving Permit (IDP)

If you plan to drive in your new country, check whether your Canadian driver’s license is valid there. Sometimes, you may need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to accompany your Canadian license. The IDP translates your driving information into multiple languages, making it easier for officials to understand your credentials.

Getting an IDP is simple and can be completed at most AMA locations. You will need your valid driver’s license and passport-sized photos and will be required to pay a small fee.

#7. Your Birth Certificates and Marriage Certificates

Carry certified copies of birth certificates and marriage certificates for all family members moving with you. These documents may be required for various administrative processes in your new country, such as registering children for school or obtaining family-related benefits. Ensure that these copies (or original documents) are stored very carefully; it may be challenging to get new copies in your new country

#8. Your Academic and Professional Credentials

If you plan to continue your education or work in your profession in your new country, gather all relevant academic and professional credentials. These might include degrees, diplomas, transcripts, professional licenses, and certificates of qualification. Some countries may require these documents to be authenticated or translated, so be sure to research the specific requirements for your destination. If you aren’t sure, your Calgary international moving consultant will be a valuable resource in deciphering foreign laws and regulations.

#9. Insurance Documents

Review your current insurance policies and discuss the coverage with your insurance provider. Determine if your existing policies (e.g., health, home, car) will remain valid during your international move or if you need to make adjustments or purchase additional coverage to protect yourself and your belongings abroad. During your move, your Calgary international moving company will require you to purchase insurance or moving coverage to protect your belongings in case of an accident.

#10. Copies of Your Power of Attorney and Will

Consider creating a power of attorney document that grants someone you trust the legal authority to act on your behalf while abroad. This document can be valuable for handling financial or legal matters in Canada, such as selling property, signing documents, or managing investments. They should also have a copy of your living will in case of death abroad.

While you should have copies of these documents, the original copies must be safely secured. Many people retain a lawyer to store these legal documents, ensuring they are safe and easily accessible in case of disaster.

Trust Calgary Movers For Your International Move

Matco Moving Solutions can help you with your local, long-distance or international move. We are a full-service moving company that is dedicated to delivering a stress-free and seamless moving experience. We have locations in Calgary, Edmonton, Yellowknife, Whitehorse and Inuvik and over 55 years of moving experience and expertise.


Contact our Calgary international movers today for a free moving quote and to learn how Matco can help you with your next move.