Ways how to earn money to spend for application

No Money to Spend on Application? Try these Hacks-they Work!

Inside: Learn practical ways on how to save money to spend for application and for proof of funds, popularly called ” show money. “

A lot of us yearn to go abroad and each of us has our specific reasons. In my family’s case, our main purpose was a better future for our kids. 

Applying to Canada is expensive. Even if you have a stable job back home, and you have some savings, these might get depleted.

Getting prepped up for gathering requirements is costly. From taking leave from work to travel to Manila or another city where you need to apply, plus expenses for food and the daily commute, all these require money from your own pocket.

Obtaining a Philippine passport, NBI clearance, police clearance, English exam, birth certificates, school transcripts, passport photos, etc. will stretch your budget.

Plus, the application fee for the specific program or permit /visa that you choose: tourist visa, study permit, working permit, provincial nominee program, federal skilled workers program, etc.

While your application is in progress, more funds are needed. Costs for the medical examination, landing fee, and most of all, proof of sufficient funds to start your life in a foreign land. 

Proof of funds to come to Canada

Then lastly, the airfare and the cash or GIC that you need to bring if you have a student visa.

Related post: Student Visa: Flashback 1996

When you apply as a family like we did, even more money is needed.

My hubby and I had stable jobs, but we had to borrow from family and our workplace insurance to sustain all our expenses.

Unless you are really rich or you have lots of savings, you have to borrow or think of ways to pool some finances.

It was definitely not easy.

Challenges in securing documents

Not sure if some, or all documents can now be accessed online, but back in 2006, we had to be in Manila to secure our authenticated birth certificates from NSO, NBI clearances, Philippine passports, school transcripts, and passport photos. We took time off from work for at least a week to travel and apply, then back to Manila after a month to pick up these documents.

I remember being at the passport office at 4:00 in the morning with other people on a long queue. It took 5 hours to get inside the office, but once inside, it was quick. By 2:00pm, I was done; tired and starved.

At the NSO, a snaking line started from outside of the building to inside the offices. Once in front, you have to be quick to beat someone to grab a service window, or else you’d be waiting longer for your chance.

Crazy times. It would have helped if National Statistics Office issued numbers then. The experience was like chasing jeepneys or FX vans. At MRT, despite the orderly lines, you still have to dash to get a spot.

Ways to pool money to cover travel costs, application fees, and show money

Watch here: Hacks to Earn Money for Application Expenses to Canada

Our Coaching group gathered experiences from ourselves and other immigrants. We’re sharing these 21 hacks. Some are common and adventurous; a few may be new to you.

Ways to save money

1. Save P200 biweekly, or every 2 weeks to coincide with your salary, if you are employed, or have steady income.  In 2 years, that’s P 9,700.00  more or less. For this hack, create a separate bank account and stay firm to not withdraw from it no matter what happens.

2. Join 2 or more local “cooperatives” and apply loans later. Be sure to pay every month, so your credit history remains good.

3. Sell unused utensils and furniture. We sold our ” ref ” and some “wedding gifts,” unused or slightly used after we got our visa.

4. Join reputable “paluwagan” groups. Paluwagan forces you to save hence, a good hack. Just make sure when it’s time for you to collect your share, deposit this in the bank, or use it for your documents.

5. Sell a property – your inheritance that you think you can’t make use of later, or some investments that you can afford to liquidate.

sell a property to earn money

6. Buy and sell second-hand clothes, bedsheets, bags, etc.  “Ukay-ukay” is a good, sustainable hack where you can also sell and upcycle your children’s old toys, card games, video games, books, DVDs, etc.

7. Make pieces of jewelry to sell. Or buy new jewelry and sell with options for buyers to pay installments.

8. Harness your culinary skill. Sell home-cooked food. Favourites and easy to sell at your house, and facebook are achara, banana bread, leche flan, polvoron. Try to sell DIY processed food, namely, longganisa or tocino. You tube videos offer plenty of ideas for both cooking and selling food.

9. Buy funeral or life plans. If you start now with low monthly payments, you’d finish up paying before you know it. These life plans can be sold to another person, in an emergency. This is an opportunity to make a small profit. You can keep the insurance plan, if you wish. After several years, you receive between P3,000-P6,000 as money back for about five years. This hack may be quite new to you, so ask an agent near you. (Disclaimer: We are not sponsored by any life plan companies).

Ways to earn money-buy life plans

10. Loans from GSIS and/or SSS or any insurance companies that you have in your workplace. Obtaining a loan from either or both of these institutions, if you can, is quite common and easy.

11. Loan from family members. We did this for our “show money” and airfare for our family of four.  We paid this gradually every month when we arrived in Canada. Luckily, my hubby and I got our jobs weeks upon arrival- entry level jobs for me, but hubby got this job that he worked on for several years.

12. Loan from friends or private individuals – people who are generous enough to give out loans. Pay when it’s due, so you don’t break their trust. Just beware of loan sharks – those who charge ridiculously high interests.

13.  Cut down, or better yet, stop the weekly dine out, movies, malling, coffee on-the-go, purchase of new clothes/bags, jewelry, and other luxuries at least while you are stocking up on funds to get ready to immigrate.

14.  Bank loans. This is an alternative to selling inherited properties. Approach your bank, if they are able to give you a loan. Be ready to provide collateral, that’s maybe your property that you wanted to keep, not sell.

15. Collect loans from people who owed you money. This may be tricky, but can be done appropriately and professionally by showing receipts and being open to methods of payment and negotiation.

16. Be a beauty product salesperson. Facebook offers a free and widely accessible market especially for young, working people as your clients.

17. Do “baratilyo” and /or ukay-ukay or tiyangge during town or school events. Not only it will be fun, it’s also not a long commitment.

18. Rent out books, DVD games, comics and gowns. When we celebrated the wedding anniversary of my parents, we rented out several bridesmaid gowns. The lady we rented if from told us she took care of these dresses after a onetime use and rented them to make extra money.

Ways to earn money-tutoring19. Monetize your talents by tutoring, bookkeeping, emceeing, singing, and/or dancing as a performer or a DI during weddings, corporate events or parties.

20. Offer services for money- mani/pedicure, massage; as party organizer, wedding coordinator, elderly care-giver, baby-sitter, pet-sitter, gardener and photographer/videographer.

21. Blogging and/or vlogging and earn from affiliate marketing or views.


Help comes to good people

These ideas are from personal experiences and from people who came here before.

There is nothing impossible if we try. Help is always there if we ask. 

You will be able to repay whatever you borrow in no time if you are successful in your application.

Think positive!

Ways to earn money-Think positive

How to pay up loans

Of course, you do have a plan on how to repay your loans.

Get a job right away! Stay open-minded, flexible and positive.

I started as a lunch monitor, watching grades school kids eat lunch. A daily 1-hour job, for 5 hours a week. To a newcomer, the pay is good as you tend to convert to pesos right away. 

Later, I became a respite for 1-2 hours for an old man in his apartment, I warmed up his lunch and stayed with him and did simple household chores, like dishwashing and light cleaning of his apartment. I also did an overnight respite to a sick lady in the hospital. These were a few times a week only.

While doing these entry-level jobs, I was also attending an orientation for new immigrants in downtown Winnipeg, where they taught how to search for employers, write resumes and cover letters, and be confident during interviews.

Entry level job in CanadaI did these very part-time entry-level jobs for around 4 months, until I took a call center job, that gave me more hours and more income.

At present, I am employed by a university as a Clinical Research Assistant in a hospital setting for the last 8 years.

When to pay

Start paying your loans gradually, each month. You don’t need to wait for you to have a stable job to begin. As soon as you start earning, pay in little amounts all loans consistently, and before you know it, you have paid all of them in a year or two.

Prioritize paying back all the money that you have borrowed, rather than buying new items for yourself or your family. 

You will feel relieved and happy once you have paid the last penny that you owed somebody.

Accept giveaways and be grateful for the assistance

Families and friends, new acquaintances or workmates will give you something if they know that you are a newcomer. My cousin gave us her old car that we used for several years. Used plates and cutlery stocked up our cupboard, donated by our cousins.

With the kindness of my aunt’s family, we were housed for 8 months until we moved to our apartment. We pitched in for cost of food, but accommodation was free.

Our bed was also a giveaway, including the mattress when we moved. We bought a second-hand sofa and dining table set from a garage or yard sale. Some of our clothes were bought from thrift stores.

Ways to earn money-garage sale

Just be ready to start from scratch and embrace a life of simplicity.

Proper mindset

Develop the positive mindset that you have to pay first all your loans before you start buying new or expensive stuff. 

There is no better way to start life in Canada than having no unpaid loans. Your hard-earned money will be worth it if you learn how to spend wisely.

Start saving, if you can, when you start having employment. You will need it to start owning your very first home.

It is so easy to succumb to accumulating big credit if you don’t restrain yourself. Many credit cards are being offered in Canada, but stay smart in using them.

Good luck and start your journey

Remember, you have to help yourself, so people will help you. After all, if you are determined and clear about your goal, nothing is impossible. 

Just start NOW!

If you need guidance and are somewhat overwhelmed with your plans, or don’t know where to start, WE CAN HELP YOU!

Email us at admin@canadaboundcoaching.com to set up initial consult by zoom for a minimal fee.

Meet your coaches here.

Vectors: Vecteezy.com

Originally published: October 19, 2022          



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12 thoughts on “No Money to Spend on Application? Try these Hacks-they Work!

  1. Hey a great post!

    This is a very interesting and certainly filled with many useful information and answers most the questions one might have about travelling and moving around.

    I had thought about a few times what the whole process would be so after reading this I have got an idea of what’s required. It does seem like quite a bit of stress especially if you don’t have a lot of money.

    Have a great day!

    1. Hi Sariyah,

      Happy to learn that this list of information has helped you figure out how to lessen the stress of finding money to spend for an application to travel or immigrate.



  2. This is a pretty interesting and undoubtedly filled with many important pieces of information and answers to the majority of the inquiries that one would have concerning traveling and moving around. After giving this some thought, I now have a better understanding of what steps are necessary to complete the process. Previously, I had only given it passing thought. It does appear to be quite a significant amount of worry, particularly if you do not have a lot of money.

    1. Hi Pasindu,

      Of course, money worries us the most when we do something big, like applying abroad.

      Our suggestions are really practical and we have tested and used most of them.

      Thanks for reading.


  3. Great article on how to earn money to spend on your college or university application. The author provides practical and realistic ways to make extra cash, including online tutoring, freelance writing, and selling items you no longer need. The article is well-organized and easy to follow, making it accessible to anyone who wants to make some extra money. I particularly appreciate the author’s emphasis on the importance of being proactive and creative in finding ways to earn money. This is a helpful resource for students who may be struggling to afford application fees or other expenses associated with applying to post-secondary institutions.

    1. Right, applicants need to be practical in finding ways to pool money for their application expenses. These tips are for everyone applying to Canada, but, of course the student pathway is the most expensive route, thus, there’s more challenge in looking for funds.


  4. There is a great deal of information to take in here. It seems that this is a one-stop how to get to Canada site that comes with coaching, instruction, ideas, hacks, and more for people who want to move to Canada permanently. The hacks are numerous. I feel that there is great value for someone looking to move to Canada.

    Are there a lot of people doing this?

    1. Hi Dave,

      Yes, there are a lot actually, who want to immigrate with their whole family, or even come on a working visa, but the most common nowadays is the student pathway, which is the most expensive route. Thus, looking for ways to provide for their expenses are quite challenging.


  5. It is amazing how Canada has opened its doors over the years looking for international workers to become a part of its economy. But what is equally amazing is the amount of money that you have to come up with if you want to be a resident of Canada. I know of a few persons personally who now live in Canada. It seems that Canada has lots of opportunities. Thanks so much for sharing your guide.

    1. Hi Norman,

      It is definitely expensive to apply, but once you’re in Canada, it’s easy to pay back loans, as long as you prioritize it, versus indulging in luxuries.

      Your future is better here, as well, especially for your kids.

      Thanks for reading.


  6. Wow, moving to Canada is quite an achievement, I can see the work and money that have been involved. Thank you for all of these great tips on saving money.

    When you are looking for loans, what kind of interest rates are you looking for? When paying off your loans, which one do you start with?

    1. Hi Nathan,

      Indeed, moving to Canada is a great blessing, but involves lots of emotional and financial preparations.

      About loans, seek something with interest rates that you can afford, for example in a bank. Usually, interest rates at less than 10% would be great. 

      We had personal loans with family, with no interest, and if you can do that, it’s the best way.

      With payment of loans, you have to start with the ones with the highest interest, to save your money.

      Just always remember that those loans have helped you come to Canada, so when you arrive, prioritize paying them, versus buying some luxuries.

      Thanks for reading,


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