I work for a railway outside of Canada but would like to move there. I would like to be considered for work in Canada. What should I do?
Typically, if you are eligible to work in Canada and are interested in working for a Canadian Railway you will need to apply directly to job postings as they are made available by each railway company. Please note: Career on Track/the Railway Association of Canada does not accept unsolicited resumes, nor do we share them with our members.
How can I find out about different rail job postings?
It’s easy – just visit the career sections of these websites:
Do I have to complete an apprenticeship if I want to work in rail?
No. You would only complete an apprenticeship if you were interested in learning a skilled trade. Railways currently hire from 7 provincially or nationally recognized trades – check them out!
What programs does the railway industry have in place to promote safety?
One program is Operation Lifesaver, which is a national public education program sponsored by the Railway Association of Canada, Transport Canada and other partners. Its aim is to minimize incidents and educate the public on rail safety.
Another program is Train to Drive. It’s an interactive website perfect for new drivers or those in the process of getting their license. You’ll find a lot of great information on how to keep yourself safe when approaching a train or highway/railway crossing.
I see that there are skilled trades for rail on your website. What is a skilled trade and are there other types of rail trades?
Skilled Trades refers to occupations that require a four-year apprenticeship with a combination of formal and informal training.
Aside from skilled trades, other trades related to rail include:
The railway running trades workers include engineers, conductors and trainmen.
These are skilled technicians who maintain; repair; and rebuild locomotives, cars and other equipment. They work in yards, terminals and engine houses, as well as in car and locomotive repair facilities. A lot of the work is done outdoors and in all kinds of weather.
If I wanted a career as a Conductor, will I travel in this position?
Not necessarily. Most conductors work in rail yards initially and with sufficient experience are later assigned to work on main-line, long hall jobs. To learn more about being a Conductor, visit our What is it REALLY like? section.
If I complete an apprenticeship am I only able to practice that trade in the province I was certified in?
In some cases, yes. However, some trades are Red Seal certified, which allows you to practice the trade in any province or territory in Canada without having to write further examinations. If you’re not sure if a rade is Red Seal certified, ask us!
I don’t live in the city or near a major rail station like VIA Rail. Can I still work in rail?
Rail is definitely not just for urbanites or those who live near major stations. In fact, if you live in a rural area, chances are there is a major train depot or terminal near you – you just don’t realize it! Click here to find the opportunities close to you!