Finding a job is hard no matter where you are, but not being a local can make it even harder. But never fear there are lots of ways to find jobs and the main tool is going to be local online sites. Of course, handing out resumes is always a useful tool as well BUT make sure you don’t go during peak time as that is an instant resume in the bin move.

Here are some tips for getting a job no mater where in the world you are:

Collage of professional profile pictures

1. Make sure your resume is up-to-date

Even though the jobs may not be advertised at the highest standard, submit your resume as if you were applying for a high-profile position. Make sure you have the relevant address and phone number on your resume. Update resume to meet country standards i.e. US GPA standards

2. Customise

Each resume and cover letter you submit must be relevant and particular to the job. Make sure to read through the description and in your cover letter answer why these are important. Even if you are going for a simple, casual job so are many others and its important to stand out in all applications.

3. Make sure you have the right experience

 Don’t waste the posters or your time and energy by applying for jobs that you have no interest or experience in at all. It will be pretty obvious in the interview if you don’t want the job.

4. Update your online presence

Make sure you have an up to date Linked in, no embarrassing content on your Facebook and if you have a portfolio make a simple website that employers can link to to see your potential for the position. Your picture must be professional and show your whole face in a respectable way.

5. Dress to impress

Same rules applies no matter what job you are going for. Most of the posts will be by private or small, local business so respect their business and go to the interview showing them that you will work hard for their business.


Using Kijiji (Canada’s craigslist/gumtree) I was able to secure 2 jobs in Victoria, BC.Kiji is like the US’s craigslist or Australia’s gumtree. Anyone can post an ad for free to sell/trade/offer a service or product. A lot gets posted on this site and things are not always filtered correctly. I found the best way to find the posts relative to what I was looking for was to search all nearby locations and not filter the results. This meant searching took some time but I had much more success than using other job search websites.

Santa’s helper & photo retoucher at Victoria, Vancouver Island
  1. Photo retoucher – Working about 20-25 hours a week as a Photo Retoucher for a professional Santa set at a Shopping Centre on Vancouver Island It was my job to crop, edit and print the photos as well as package the photos and be the first point of contact for pick-up.
  2. Party Helper – I also did 2 weekend day gigs for a kid’s party company on Vancouver Island. Yup elf suit this time and I was to make sure the kids were using the bouncy castles at their Christmas parties responsibly.
  3. Assistant for a Selfpublished author – I assisted an indpendent author self-publish the first couple of her books for ebook and physical distribution.
  4. Event promoter – I worked a few gigs for an event promition staff agency on Vancouver Island. I was a greeter at the Nanaimo Job Fair and a wine promoter on a few occasions at liquor stores.

Also see “How to become an AuPair in Canada”


Craigslist not only advertises old furniture, second hand electronics, women, concert tickets and some other concerning things but also jobs. Yes there are lots of very sexist, useless and fake ads but there are also legit and great options when you know where to look.

Keep your search broad, this will mean more time flicking through the bad ads but sometimes the ad you are looking for is not under a specific heading and can get lost when you filter too much.

Assistant to photographer – behind the scenes
  1. Assistant to photographer – I did a couple of gigs assisting a photographer with equipment at a couple of weddings and an engagement photo-shoot.
  2. Appointment maker & Enrollment Coordinator – I got a 12 month office job in a call centre assisting teachers with their student loans and later advising them on enrolment to further their education at online schools.


Not only have a bought a car, sold my own items, bought a tablet for a great price and my dad a kayak but I have also applied for a few jobs on this site.

Waitress at dinner theatre
  1. Babysitter – I have had a few babysitting jobs through Gumtree.
  2. Legal Secretary – For 6 months I was a legal secretary at a small firm in Brisbane.
  3. Waitress – I worked as a waitress for a small cafe for some time from a listing on this site as well.

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