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After You Arrive

Opening a Bank Account

Immediately after you arrive, you should open an account at a local bank or credit union. Many financial institutions offer special services for new Canadian residents.

Popular national banks and credit unions include:

Other local and regional financial institutions in Northwestern Ontario are:

When you go to open a bank account, you must show original and valid identification. Photocopies will not be accepted. There are 3 choices of acceptable identification to show:

Show 2 pieces of I.D from List A:
  • A drivers’ license issued in Canada
  • A Canadian passport
  • A Certificate of Canadian Citizenship or Certification of Naturalization
  • A Permanent Resident Card
  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada Form IMM 1000 or IMM 1442*
  • A birth certificate issued in Canada
  • A Social Insurance Number (SIN) card issued by the Government of Canada
  • An Old Age Security card issued by the Government of Canada
  • A Certificate of Indian Status issued by the Government of Canada
  • A provincial health insurance card; or

Show 1 piece of I.D. from List A and 1 piece from List B:
  • An employee identity card with a photograph from an employer well known in the community
  • A signed automated banking machine (ABM) card or client card issued by a member of the Canadian Payments Association
  • A signed credit card issued by a member of the Canadian Payments Association
  • A signed Canadian Institute for the Blind (CNIB) client card with a photograph; or
  • A foreign passport.

Or, show 1 piece of I.D. from List A and have someone, who the bank knows, confirm that you are who you say you are.

Canadian Currency

Canadian money is made of cents and dollars. There are 100 cents in 1 Canadian dollar. Currency is found in coins of:
  • 1 cent ($0.01) called the “penny”,
  • 5 cents ($0.05) called the ‘nickel’,
  • 10 cents ($0.10) called the ‘dime’ ,
  • 25 cents ($0.25) called the ‘quarter’,
  • 1 dollar ($1.00) called the ‘loonie’ for the Canadian loon featured on the coin, and
  • A two dollar ($2.00) coin called the “twoonie” as it is the equivalent of two loonie’s.
  • Bills, or paper currency, are found in denominations of five dollars ($5.00), ten dollars ($10.00), twenty dollars ($20.00), fifty dollars ($50.00) and one hundred dollars ($100.00).

To find out what your home currency is worth against Canadian currency, talk to a representative from a local bank, or visit this popular currency exchange website:

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