Express Entry vs PNP: Which is better for PR?

Express Entry vs PNP: Which is better for PR?

Manmeet Kaur Manmeet Kaur
[Published 11 Apr, 2024 | 04:51 PM]
About Author - 7 min read

“Should I apply for Express Entry or PNP?” is the biggest question that troubles the minds of many Indians planning to apply for a Canada PR Visa from India.

Express Entry and Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) are the two biggest pathways for new permanent residents entering Canada every year. It is estimated that these immigration pathways will welcome 220,770 newcomers in 2024 alone – out of the 485,000 that IRCC is aiming to welcome.

To clear your mind of confusion and make a clear decision, here is a comparison between Express Entry and PNP.

Apply for Canada PR Visa from India

Submitting a profile through Express Entry

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) processes PR applications within 6 months of time. This makes Express Entry the fastest and best immigration pathway for Indians to apply for PR. Under this program, there are three immigration programs:

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
  • Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
  • Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
Did you know? IRCC, in the Immigration Levels Plan 2024-2026, aims to welcome 110,700 permanent residents through these programs.

1. Eligibility Requirements

All programs under Express Entry have unique requirements. You must meet the requirements of at least one of the programs before you qualify for profile submission to the Express Entry pool.

Use the 67-point calculator that assesses your age, education, work experience, language skills, and other factors and assigns you points. If you meet the 67 points requirements out of 100 points, you qualify to submit a profile in the pool and officially become an Express Entry candidate.

2. Express Entry Draws

Now that you are in the Express Entry pool, your profile be ranked against the potential candidates using a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). A CRS score will be given to you as per the same factors in the 67-point calculator.

IRCC conducts Express Entry draws on a bi-weekly basis - with some exceptions. If you meet the minimum CRS score, you get an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Canada PR from India. 

If it is lower than the minimum required score, calculate your CRS score first and find ways to improve your score, including gaining more work experience, getting a temporary job in Canada, getting additional educational credentials, retaking the language tests, or learning French.

Your Express Entry profile will be valid for one year after submission and once it expires, you have to re-submit it.

Many Canadian provinces have streams aligned with Express Entry, using which they invite candidates from the Express Entry pool for PR. These Provincial Nominee Programs are known as enhanced streams. 

Invitation from Canadian Provinces

If you wish to receive a nomination, you first have to be invited from the federal Express Entry pool or the provincial or territorial pool of eligible candidates. Only then, you will be able to submit an enhanced PNP application to the particular province or territory.

Once you receive a provincial nomination certificate, your profile will be awarded with 600 CRS points, increasing your chances of securing an ITA from the federal government.

Talk to an Expert

3. Complete the Canada PR Application submission

Once you are invited by the IRCC, you will have 60 60-day timeframe to submit a complete application for permanent residence with supporting documents. IRCC will start the process, which typically takes around 6 months, but some PR applications may be processed in a shorter time frame (2-3 months) if they are straightforward and meet all the requirements.

Once your permanent residence application is processed, IRCC will make a final decision on your application. If approved, your passport will be stamped and IRCC will send you a Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) document and a Permanent Resident Visa (PRV).

Submitting a profile through PNP

Now that you know about “enhanced PNP streams” – which are aligned with Express Entry. There are “base PNP streams” also which do not align with Express Entry. They are tailored for provinces to meet their local labour market needs and demographic challenges by nominating eligible candidates directly. To qualify, you have to meet the unique requirements and apply for these PNPs separately.

Eligibility requirements

Every province in the country, except Quebec and Nunavut, has their own PNPs. The eligibility requirements of these provincial nominee programs are unique and vary depending on what program you apply for.

Candidates with ties to a specific province, including previous study, work experience in an in-demand occupation, or a job offer from an eligible employer in that province – are prioritized. But do not worry! If you don’t have any ties, having strong human capital factors that a province is looking for will work in your favour. 

PNPs are the second largest immigration pathway for immigrants from India. In comparison to the Express Entry target for 2024, it is not as that much. However, PNPs are projected to overtake all other immigration pathways in 2025 and 2026 and become Canada’s largest pathway for welcoming newcomers.

Submitting a profile Express Entry vs PNP

Which one should you apply for?

Your decision to apply for Canada PR through Express Entry depends on personal circumstances and preferences.

Pros and Cons of Express Entry

Quick processing timesHigher CRS score requirement
Higher chances of selection with the right skills and work experienceNo guarantee of provincial nomination
Freedom to live and work anywhere in CanadaA limited number of immigration programs

Pros and Cons of PNPs

More program options to applyLonger processing times
Opportunity to settle in a specific province or territoryLimited opportunities
lower CRS score requiredRequirements and eligibility criteria vary by province

Now, the decision is yours!

If you wish to immigrate to Canada faster and have higher CRS scores, Express Entry is the ideal option for you. On the other hand, if you are interested in settling in a specific province or territory. And fulfil the eligibility criteria of a province, applying for a PNP will be a better option.

Watch Now! How to Get Canada PR Visa Approval in Just 40 Days?

Carefully consider the pros and cons of each program before making your final decision. For an in-depth understanding of the programs, connect with immigration consultants in India, Nationwide Visas. Get a free consultation session and determine the best option for your situation.

Good Luck!

Read more: Canada PR from India: Complete Processing Timeline


We welcome your feedback

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Enquire Now

Stay up to date with latest news

Website-Pop-UpExpress Entry Next Prediction Draw
Check Your Eligibility! chatbot icon
chatbot icon Check Your Eligibility In 60 Seconds!