Essential Cards in Your New Journey
Man, time flies when you’re having fun!
Yup, that will be our excuse for our three-month radio silence. I mean, so much happened in that time, but I ain’t lying… we were having fun amidst the chaos and uncertainty of this move to Canada. Sure, we’ve been here for over a year already, but there are still so many things that surprise us that make this so much fun.
Anyway, back to the original topic of this article. What are other things you want to get once you land?
*Uhm, if you haven’t landed, I will talk more about that soon. Watch out for it ;) *
Even if you don’t plan on getting a car or driving soon, you should start your Toronto driving experience. Toronto, specifically, has a tiered license system, and it is good if you start that as soon as possible.
Note: This was a mistake I made. I waited 9 months before getting starting the process.
- You start earning time, which is credited once you get your driving license.
- The license acts as your valid identification card, so you don’t have to keep bringing essential documents with you, such as your passport and proof of residence
- Since it is a tiered system, you can get a G1 license even if you have no practical driving experience. It is a learner’s permit where you must take a written (or computer-based) test. I will share the notes I used to study for this soon.
For those coming from the Philippines (although I’m sure this applies to other countries as well), get an LTO and DFA certification if you’ve already been driving for years. This is the only way your driving experience will be recognized in Toronto. Why do years of experience matter? Lower Insurance! Nuff’ said.
Now, if you really don’t plan on driving anytime soon, an Ontario card is your next bet for getting a valid identification card right away.
It’s a quick process. You simply need to book an appointment (or even walk in, if you’re feeling lucky) with Service Ontario, pay the processing fee ($40 during our time) and wait for a couple of weeks.
Note: There are other equivalent cards, depending on the province you land in.
Toronto Public Library
Here’s another card you can get, especially if you need a quiet place to work or look for work. You will probably have decent internet where you are staying, but if you’re like us, who had to share a place first, you’ll want this.
What’s nice about the public libraries here is that they have private rooms you can book and take remote interviews.
While you’re there, you can also attend their educational programs during your break. They usually have engaging lessons about a variety of topics going on.
Lastly is the Presto card to help you get around the city.
PRESTO is an electronic payment system that eliminates the need for tickets, tokens, passes and cash. PRESTO works across local transit in the Greater Toronto, Hamilton and Ottawa areas, which makes paying for your trip simple, convenient and secure.
Again, this is optional since you can always pay by cash, but it is much more convenient.
- You don’t have to carry a bunch of coins (although I still keep a bare minimum with me in case my card malfunctions – that’s me being risk-averse)
- You don’t have to get a receipt when you ride to show to the next bus on your route. One tap gets you a free pass for two hours. This is done automatically with the card.
- You can set it up to be automatically loaded, so you don’t have to worry about reloading
Hopefully, this has been helpful to you. Please let me know if you have other questions about moving to Ontario or Canada.
This is Yummy and Tummy. Signing off for now! See you soon.