"Direct deposit is:
• Fast. The money is guaranteed to be in your bank account on time. That’s especially important if you have arranged automatic withdrawals to pay rent, property taxes, hydro, etc.
• Secure. There’s no risk of your payment being delayed, misplaced, lost, stolen, or damaged.
• Convenient. The money is in your account when needed even if you’re away from home on a holiday or unable – for any reason – to get to the bank right away.
• A timesaver. There’s no need to adjust your schedule (picking up the kids, attending classes, visiting the doctor, etc.) to accommodate banking hours and there’s no need to wait in line for a teller or ATM either."
It's possible to enrol for direct deposit online:
- http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/sc/direct-deposit/index.shtml for CPP, unemployment, Child Tax Benefit
- http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/directdeposit/ for taxes
- http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/services/resources/direct-deposit for its various payments, though here you still have to print and mail in a paper form.
Update: here is graphic from the government's publicity people showing the various other ways to sign up.