How to Dress for Winter in Canada. Tips for staying warm.

Do you know how to dress in layers?

Many students arrive in Canada and the USA during the coldest months of the year, between January and March. For many of them, it is their very first winter (they are snow virgins). This is why we prepared this short guide, to help them face the winter, so they don’t stop enjoying it.

To better understand the traditional adage of dressing in layers, it is convenient to understand the function of each layer:

1. Inner layer (underwear): It keeps your skin dry from your own sweating.

2. Middle layer or insulation layer: It maintains your body heat to protect you from the cold.

3. Outer layer or shell layer: It protects you from wind and rain.

Inner layer (thermal underwear): When it hits several degrees below zero, it is necessary to wear long underwear, a piece of clothing that covers even the ankles. In North America they are popularly called “Long Johns”. Some people use their running tights or sport tights subjectively. Also, there are people who use a comfortable short or a medium-length underwear instead of the long ones. To select this layer, we should consider not only the weather, but our metabolism, and the kind of activities.

Middle or insulation layer. It is convenient to know your piece of clothing’s aimed temperature. You can buy a fleece, a puffer jacket, a large coat with goose feathers, sweaters of polar material, among others. For more insulation you can double this layer with another piece of the same kind. When considering outdoors’s temperature, remember to check the chilling sensation as well, the effect of the added wind and humidity.

Outer layer (Shell): Usually a windbreaker with a hoodie. Many coats have the middle and outer layers in one single piece or in two combined pieces. By itself, this layer will give you little insulation against the cold, but it protects you from the elements: wind, rain and snow. Some coats come with fur around the hoodie to protect your face and neck from the snow, and provide better insulation.

It is not always necessary to wear all layers but remember: it is better to wear all layers and have to take one off, than missing one layer and face a major inconvenience.

It is better to wear all layers and have to take one off, than missing one layer and face a major inconvenience“.

Last but not least, do not forget to use gloves and a scarf for further protection.

By following the aforesaid, you will be prepared to hit the snow and enjoy the many outdoor activities that you can do in winter.

Language courses for immigration purposes in Canada

The use of standardised tests in Canadian immigration is now almost universal. Therefore, to apply under the Quebec Skilled Worker program for example:

Situation 1:

Monsieur Jean Dupont who has a doctorate in French philosophy from La Université de la Sorbonne de Paris will still need to pass a test recognized by the MIDI to get his French language points!

Situation 2:

Joseph Smith, holder of a Booker Prize for English Literature, will still need an IELTS or CELPIP test results to gain language points under Express Entry!

Today the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion (MIDI) of Québec accepts the results of the following tests in French:

· (TEFAQ) Test d’évaluation du français adapté pour le Québec of the Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Paris Île-de-France (CCIP-IDF);

· (TCF-Québec) Test de connaissance du français pour le Québec of the Centre international d’études pédagogiques (CIEP);

· (TEF) the Test d’évaluation du français of the CCIP-IDF;

· (TEF Canada) the Test d’évaluation du français pour le Canada of the CCIP-IDF;

· (TCF) the Test de connaissance du français of the CIEP;

· (DELF) the Diplôme d’études en langue française of the CIEP; and

· (DALF) the Diplôme approfondi de langue française of the CIEP.

For English, in addition to IELTS, CELPIP tests are accepted.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will only consider the results of two tests of French for the immigration program managed through the Express Entry system:

· Test d’évaluation du français (TEF) of the Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Paris Île-de-France; and

· Test d’évaluation du français pour le Canada (TEF Canada) of the CCIP-IDF.

Prepare yourself well and avoid gimmicks !

Some schools may promise that the success of some “internal” language course given by them might make it unnecessary to take one of the tests listed above.

This is a word of caution: Think of what lies behind this promise made to a certain “captive audience” of students in vocational programs. Can you expect the same quality of education when there is an exemption of standardized tests?

If you want to apply to Canadian immigration program, like the Programme de l’expérience québécoise (PEQ) or the Express Entry; you must take an international standardized test such as

IELTS, DELF or any other of the ones explained before, the home certificate proving the success of such a language program will not be acceptable under Express Entry for the precious 2nd language points!

For immigration purposes, I urge you to choose a school that will teach you the language well! And that will prepare you for the real, more universally recognized tests! And for life in Canada!


Membre R420255 du CRCIC

Consultant reconnu par le MIDI (no d’inscription 11479)

Membre de l’Association canadienne des conseillers professionnels en immigration (ACCPI)

Tél. : (001) 514-248-8994