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The Working Holiday Program (WHP) is addressed to young Canadians who would like to work and travel in Belgium for up to a year. Travel is the main objective of the Program, while paid work is only secondary.
Terms of participation
Canadian citizens living in Canada, aged between 18 and 30 years old (inclusive) can participate if they meet the eligibility criteria of the program.
Applicants are expected to be in good health, to maintain throughout their stay an extensive insurance, and to have sufficient financial means to travel. They must also meet all requirements of good conduct in relation to public order and security.
Step 1: Verify whether you meet the participation requirements.
Step 2: Fill out an application form online: https://visaonweb.diplomatie.be/en
Step 3: Decide whether you will send your application file by mail or hand it in person in Montreal. Make an appointment on visaonweb to apply in person or disregard the functionality “make an appointment” if you choose to send your application by registered mail.
Step 4: Finalise the process on visaonweb. Print out your form, date it and sign it.
Step 5: Gather all the documents listed in the table below and add your form to your application file.
Step 6: Mail your application package to the Consulate General by registered or secured mail (FedEx, UPS, Purolator…), or apply in person on the set appointment date.
Your application file should contain the following.
|1. A statement of intent
Format: A short note stating the goals of your participation in the program, bearing your signature
Subject: Travel is the main purpose of the WHP
|The WHP is not appropriate if your main aim is to study or to work in Belgium.
|2. Proof of payment of the administrative fee
Amount: EUR 229,00
Format: Copy of the wire transfer in EURO (€)
Beneficiary: SPF Intérieur, Office des étrangers, Boulevard Pacheco 44, 1000 Bruxelles
IBAN: BE57 6792 0060 9235
Bank: BPOST SA, Centrum Monnaie (no number), 1000 Brussels, Belgium
Communication: NAME First Name NATIONALITY Birth date (DDMMYYYY)
|Please contact your bank for the proof of payment.
The communication must include the name, first name, birth date and nationality of the applicant: Example: SMITH Anne CAN 15072011
Charges in relation to the proof of payment, including transfer fees, shall be borne by the applicant.
More info: administrative fee
|3. Payment of the Consular fees
Amount: CAD 300,00 (See Consular fees).
Format: Certified cheque or Postal Money Order (Canada Post). Cash sent by mail or personal cheques will not be accepted!
Order of: Consulate General of Belgium
|4. Two recent pictures
Format: passport size, color with white background
|5. Canadian passport
Validity: >15 months following the start of the WHP
|6. Application form
Format: Visa application form, filled out online, printed out, dated and signed.
7. Police check
|8. Medical certificate
Source: Filled out, signed and stamped by:
- either an accredited Doctor (PDF, 205.13 KB)
- or your Physician*
Format: an original model medical certificate (see below)
*If it is your own Physician, add the copy of your Physician’s page as it appears in the Directory of your Province’s College of Physicians (PDF, 205.13 KB)
Date: Date of both medical investigation and certificate less than 6 months before application
Download: Medical certificate
|9. Proof of sufficient funds
Subject: Establish that you will have access from Belgium to the equivalent of 2,500 EUR minimum
Format: Your most recent bank statements bearing your full name. Alternatively: a bank certificate, signed by your banker. No screenshot.
|10. Ability to return
A return flight ticket or sufficient financial means to purchase a return ticket (e.g. : a credit card in your name with a validity >1 year).
|11. Medical insurance
Subject: Travel and health care insurance, including occupational accident, hospitalisation and return home coverage for 365 days
Format: A detailed certificate of insurance, including your first name and last name, as well as basic information on the insurance coverage. You have to be insured for 1 full year.
|12. A return envelope
Subject: This envelope will be used to safely ship your passport and other confidential documents back to you.
Format: A prepaid and preaddressed envelope, with a tracking number: e.g.: XpressPost, FedEx, UPS, DHL, Purolator
|No document will be posted to an address outside Canada. Please contact a courier service to verify which type of envelope is best suited.
The Consulate General of Belgium reserves the right to ask for any further documents.
Applications should be addressed to the Consulate General of Belgium in Montreal at least one month before your intended travel date.
You can mail your file or hand it in at the following address:
Consulate General of Belgium in Montreal
Visa Dept. / WHP
1000, rue Sherbrooke Ouest – Suite 1400
H3A 3G4 Montréal, QC
As soon as your application has been approved, you will be allowed to stay for 12 months in Belgium as a participant in the WHP. A multiple entry visa will be issued accordingly.
You should arrive in Belgium within 3 months from the date your visa was issued.
Within 8 days after your arrival, head to the « commune » or « gemeente » (city hall / local administration) in order to get registered. Once your registration is complete, you should receive a type-A residence card, which will allow you to travel in the Schengen area
Participants to the WHP cannot extend the duration of their stay, nor change their status.
Candidates can participate in the WHP Belgium/Canada only once.
Work and studies
The Working-Holiday Program provides an opportunity to spend holidays in Belgium and to work on an occasional basis. In this framework, the WHP offers an exemption from the obligation to obtain a work permit before engaging in paid work in Belgium. With regard to social security, employment conditions, minimum wages and requirements for safe and healthy working conditions, Belgian standards and legislation apply.
You may take lessons or follow study programs for a maximum of 3 months in total.
Discover your destination: Belgium at a glance
Enjoy you stay in Belgium!