Number of young Irish visitors skyrockets in Vancouver

By Marina Wang

Vancouver residents may have noticed the whimsical inflection of the Irish accent has become all too common in the last couple years. According to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada, the number of temporary resident visas and work permits given to Irish citizens has jumped over sixty per cent since 2012.

Many of the young Irish visitors arrive over the summer with a two-year work permit. Last year 5,535 Irish residents arrived on work permits, and 1,221 came on temporary resident visas.

To many, the work permits are a gateway to immigrating to the city. “There’s a rite of passage in Ireland called the ‘J1 summer’ basically, if you’re a college student, you can apply for a working holiday visa in the US for the summer months. This is phenomenally popular, and sees thousands head to the States each year,” writes one Reddit user who settled in Canada after being “made redundant” at their job in Ireland back in 2010. “Unfortunately, this means you’ll get some pretty rowdy kids over each summer, and they’re doing the rep of Irish people here no good.” Other popular destination for young Irish people on the “J1 summer” include the United States and Australia.

Some also attributed the influx of Irish migrants to Ireland’s economic dip in 2012, when the unemployment rate hit a high of 16 per cent. Unemployment has since settled back down to around 5%. Alberta used to be a popular destination for temporary Irish visitors, but since the crash in oil prices in 2014, visitors have tended to flock towards Toronto or Vancouver.

Another temporary Irish visitor said his choice to move to Vancouver for a summer was based on his love of mountain biking, the temperate climate, the ocean, and the relative ease of obtaining a visa.

2 Responses to Number of young Irish visitors skyrockets in Vancouver

  1. nonconfidencevote says:

    Irish economy tanking after the EU stopped pumping billions into their country.
    Then their Real Estate melted……

    Can we send realtors to Ireland on a one way visa?

    • nonconfidencevote says:

      Nah, Even Ireland doesnt want MORE realtors in a tanking real estate market.

      Happy Housing CRASH everyone!

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