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Calgary - Sharing landing experience

Discussion in 'Settlement Issues' started by PonJoub, Sep 11, 2017.

  1. Hi
    Hi...PonJoub.... awesome description, haven't found a more detailed one than this...
    I required help from you regarding managing baby...
    I too have a baby 16 months old, and i wanted to know what you packed in the bag for the baby and how you managed it in the flight along with the baby...I needed some tips...
    Thanks ..
  2. Hi Vishrut1987,
    Not too scare you but the flight to Canada with our baby was one of the worst flight we ever had. Our son is usually an easy going baby but during this specific flight (10h+ flight without the connection flight), he didn't sleep from origin airport in France (before taking the flight in Frankfurt to Calgary) until 30 min just before we landed in Calgary ... it was a long long long flight ... and obviously he was super agitated and crying much more than usual ... Honestly, knowing that our baby is an easy going baby => we never thought that this flight would have become a "difficult" flight ... but i guess each baby is different from another ... we were lucky that the guys around us were very understanding and I thank them for their kindness. It helped us a lot. Generally during a flight, people around families with babies don't really realized that they can be the biggest support (or the worst nightmare) without even knowing it ... i hope you will have great people around you ...

    so if i have any advice to give, try to sleep very well before taking your flight, this will help you keeping your "stress" down if your baby start becoming agitating and crying...
    and also ask to get a seat where you can have a "lot" of space (generally in the front row of each section nearby the panels (generally where they put families with babies) or try to get extra seat(s) at the rear of the aircraft (if your flight is not full ...)

    as for the stuff we brought, we took all the usual necessary stuff:
    diapers, formula (but with the doses already prepared as we had a kind of long flight, we prepared 4-5 doses + 4-5 empty bottles => you can still buy the bottles of water at the shop just before boarding ...), some cookies for babies containing not too much sugar otherwise your baby will be too full of energy & agitated ... important if you want him/her to sleep .., 2-3 set of clothes (very comfortable clothes) and hopefully we did that because our son spilled 1 bottle out on him ..., his favorite toys (but try to avoid the toys with sound to not bother the guys around ...) and also his favorite teddy bear/dolly, and we took the pregnancy pillow of my wife to have him a comfortable support to rest/sleep because he was already too big to get a baby bassinet (so i believe your baby will be the same ...).
    if your baby is already walking, expect to stand up and walk quite a while during the flight ...

    I wish you good luck because at 16 months, my boy was very active and running everywhere and always wanted to play (he's still the same now ...) and my wife and I were always wondering how would have been this flight to Canada if he is was older ...

    Again, all babies are different, so what i am telling here may not apply ...
    I hope this helps and good luck.
    Vishrut1987 likes this.
  3. Hi all,

    Just want to take the opportunity to give some feedback after 1 year in Canada (especially in Calgary ...)

    Life is still good and we enjoy it. However, not everything is “wonderful” for everyone …

    I still have my job and my wife got a job 6 months ago (but not as paid as she was before … but it’s still a job …). It took her about 2-3 months to get a “decent” job (but she got experience in different countries in the world, has a Master degree and she speaks both French and English … so I believe that other people may take longer than that to get a “decent” job in their desired field …).

    Obviously, having 2 salaries help a lot to settle down correctly in a new country/city …

    However, pls note that even though the oil&gas business (main economy of this province) is picking up => it does not necessarily mean that the situation here is good … there are still many people unemployed (compared to other provinces in Canada) and struggling …

    I would say that many people are lucky to still have their job … even though the “crisis” is behind … but as always with a crisis … the system is always taking advantage on us … (wages lower than before because a lot of people on the market … etc … etc …)

    So if you plan to immigrate in Calgary (Alberta province to an extend …), I would say that you’d better get a job offer before coming and/or you’d better have a lot of money/saving in your bank to sustain until you find what you want/need …

    On the bright side, in one year time, we managed to recently buy a house. It was not easy but thanks to a friend who works in a bank, we managed to get a decent mortgage (not the best deal but definitely not the worst considering our situation as “newcomers” …)

    Good luck to all
    pgpg and Vishrut1987 like this.
  4. Hi...PonJoub...
    Thank you so much for such a detailed post..I will note all this and also share this to my wife for preparations and get back to you in case I need more suggestions.
    My son is also extraaactive, and makes each member of the family tired by evening itself.
    That's the reason i am a little worried about the flight, he at times get cranky too...
    Once again thank you so much..
    Hv a great time ahead...
    PonJoub likes this.
  5. Hi...
    Congratulations for buying ur house...and ur jobs...
    While you both are working how you manage your baby...
    Is there option to work from home there.
  6. Hi,
    Our son is going to daycare ... (plan that in your budget as well if both parents plans to work ... unless you have some family that can take care of your baby while working ...).
    working from home is really a decision of your employer and field of activity.

    Good luck.
  7. This is by far the most detailed article i have read on calgary. Thank you sir for taking out time and mentioning the detailed items which is difficult to search online. Appreciate your effort and support for future calgarians :)

    PonJoub likes this.
  8. This is the most interesting thread so far as it addresses all my questions about landing in Calgary.

    I plan to land next month but after reading this, I am so frightened and anxious lol.

    I need to plan more scenarios and budget better. Thank you so much!
    PonJoub likes this.
  9. Hi everyone,

    Finally landed in Calgary and thought to share my own experience.

    Landed August 7th with my husband and four year old child. I was 34 weeks pregnant when I landed. The plane ride was torturous: about 7hrs from Lagos to Frankfurt, then another 7hrs wait before boarding a 9hr flight to Calgary. Canada is a huge country in terms of landmass!!

    Anyways so before boarding the flight, we were lucky enough to secure accomodation with Skyview Ranch apartments. They insisted we paid the security fee to hold the place and we did.

    When we landed at the airport, we literally went through déclaration by typing and scanning our passports ourselves through the machines provided. On if you could décalée what you had in your luggage and what kind of visa you carried etc. After then, we were directed to another wing where we saw a customs officer. We waited about 30mins max and our COPr was stamped. The officer took our address in Calgary and promised to send the PR cards in 3 months.

    So from the airport, we took a cab straight to the apartment. Note that it wasn’t furnished so my husband had to go get an air bed for us to sleep on for the night. The apartment managers wouldn’t allow us send any furniture or luggage beforehand until we had signed the lease agreement and paid the rest of the rent and other fees. We did these upon arrival and moved in. Day 2 we spent sleeping. Yes it was needed.

    Day 3, we went to get our SIN and it was pretty easy. 20mins we three all had SIN and we were already out. Then we headed to the bank to open an account so we could set up a utility account for the apartment. Electricity was not included in the rent and we needed to pay that directly to the utility company so we had to provide them a void chèque which the bank gives to u after u open an account.

    Day 4 we registered for or healthcare. And also drivers license at the same registry. We found out we needed to take a driver’s test before proceeding. More details later.

    Day 5 we ordered some furniture, went out to shop for groceries and googled to find a Doctor nearby and schedule an appointment.

    By day 13, we had done all registration needed and attended doctors appointments for the coming baby and done all preliminary tests concerned.

    By day 14, we realized that we had spent almost 800cad on Uber in just 7 days (yeah we went out a lot). That immediately prompted us to go buy a car. This set us back by 3100cad in actual price and administrative fees. So in order to get a vehicle license, you would require third party liability car insurance (minimum required by law).

    Much to our surprise, the insurance quote went as high as 2700cad and we had to pay outright. Monthly payments were no longer allowed according to AMA. I later heard that new immigrants were defaulting on monthly payments. So note, when u buy a car be ready to pay ridiculously high insurance and pay it all at once!

    Anyways we did that and got the vehicle license plate. The plus is with just 30cad u can drive about for a week.

    On the drivers license issue, I am from Nigeria. I took the learners test and passed (remember to study for it online and don’t assume you know it all. Canada has some really weird road signs you need to learn) and was issued a class 7 license (learners permit). The officer at the registry explained that it is only after my Nigerian Driver’s license is verified from the federal road safety authority in Nigeria that I would get my class 5 GDL exempt drivers license. The whole process plus cost of test set me back about 130cad plus taxes. Note that GST in Calgary is 5percent.

    Healthcare is amazing here and free with your health card but you just purchase your prescription with your own money or take out insurance for that. Dentist and opticians plus ophthalmologists and some other specific specialists are not covered under the healthcare card. We didn’t have the health card immediately but a number was given to us within 48hrs which could allow us see doctors.

    I couldn’t work cause of the baby but my husband found a job in less than a month of arrival. Wasn’t the kind he wanted but it paid the bills and also gave him the ‘Canadian experience’.
    PonJoub and sheri268 like this.
  10. Good Luck in your new Canadian life.
  11. Thank you PonJoub so much for sharing your experience. We are planning to settle in Calgary next year and the biggest concerns are job opportunities. I’m a marketing data analyst and my husband is a software developer. We had several years of US working experience and masters degree. So will this experience give us some advantages on job hunting?

    All the best to you and your families!
  12. It should help but have you already searched/applied in your destination
  13. Yes we have done lots of research and applied for some positions. We know that Toronto has more IT jobs but the housing is way much higher than Calgary, that’s why we’re planning to settle in AB.
  14. Your job search responses will give you an indication of how well received your skills are in that area. I would continue expanding on your network/recruiter contacts since they will help you get an opportunity (even more so than direct application)

    Hopefully someone from that area/field can provide you with a more specific response, best of luck
  15. Thank you so much!

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