- It is extremely important that you apply for the correct visa before you leave home. Different countries have different rules and the purpose of this page is to give you some assistance and guidance.
- Remember that it is your responsibility to ensure that you have all the correct paperwork. If you are unsure or need further help or advice do please contact us and one of our helpful counsellors will be happy to assist.
- Regardless of which country you are going to be studying in, different visa rules apply depending on your age, nationality and the length of stay you plan to be in the country.
Detailed Canada visa information
You will find an excellent overview of what you need to do to obtain a Canadian study visa here
Do I need a Study Permit to study in Canada?
You do not need a Study Permit if you enrol in a program that is six months or less and complete it within the authorized period. However, as an international student you must obtain a Study Permit to study in Canada if you intend to study for more than six months.
If you are going to need a Study Permit it is recommended that you apply for one before traveling to Canada because applications can only be made from abroad. If you decide to extend your course or continue your studies for more than 6 months once you arrive in Canada, you will need to leave the country in order to apply for your Study Permit if you did not obtain one in advance.
How do I apply for a Study Permit?
If you are outside Canada, contact a Canadian embassy, consulate or high commission. You must submit your application to the Canadian visa office in your area. If you are in Canada, you can call (888) 242-2100 to speak with an agent or use the automated telephone service to order application forms and other services.
When should I apply for a Study Permit?
You should apply as soon as you receive your letter of acceptance from your chosen school in Canada via gostudylink.
How much time does it take to get a Study permit?
The process time for the application varies at different visa offices, and statistics of past processing times may be found here.
How much does it cost to apply for a Study Permit?
Visit the website of your local Canadian visa office for information on fees.
What will I need to make my application?
You must first apply to a Canadian school on the gostudylink website. If you are eligible for admission, gostudylink will give you a letter of acceptance, which you need when applying for a Study Permit.
What supporting documents should I include with my application?
Proof of acceptance from your chosen school
- Letter from the school that includes the name of the institution, confirmation of acceptance and/or registration as a student, course of study, duration of the academic programme and the latest date you may register
Proof of identity
- Valid passport or travel document that guarantees re-entry to the country that issued it (citizens and permanent residents of the US, St. Pierre and Miquelon and Greenland do not require passports but require proof of status and citizenship, such as a national identity card or alien registration card)
- Two identical passport-sized (45mm x 35mm) photos of you and your accompanying family members that should be:
1. Taken within the last six months in colour or black and white
2. Clear and taken against a light-coloured background
3. Printed on normal photographic paper
4. Full face with a neutral expression and without sunglasses, hat or other head covering unless it is for cultural or religious purposes
Proof of financial support
- Proof you have sufficient funds to pay for tuition fees, living expenses for yourself and accompanying family members, return transportation for yourself and accompanying family members. Such evidence may include:
- Proof of a Canadian Bank account in your name if money has been transferred to Canada
- Bank statements for the past four months
- Bank draft in convertible currency
- Proof of payment of tuition and residence fees
- Proof of funding paid from within Canada if you have a scholarship
You must also prove that you will leave Canada at the end of your studies. If your country has foreign exchange controls, you must provide proof that you will be permitted by the exchange control authorities of your country to export funds for all your expenses. Additional documents may be required, including medical and security information.
What will happen when I make my application?
Your application will be reviewed, and an officer will then decide if an interview is necessary. If approved, you will receive a letter of confirmation. You must show this letter to the Canadian officer at the port of entry, who will issue you a Study Permit.
Can I extend my stay as a student?
If you have a Study Permit, you can apply to extend your stay as a student over 6 months through a Canadian visa office within Canada.
If you do not have a Study Permit you can extend your course or enrol in another course as long as you are not studying for longer than 6 months in total. If you would like to extend your studies in Canada beyond 6 months and do not have a Study Permit, you must apply for a Study Permit at a Canadian visa office outside of Canada.
Can I work during my studies?
Foreign students are not allowed to work during their studies in Canada, unless they are enrolled in the OPUS work and study programme or internship placement.
What do I need to participate in the OPUS work and study program?
You will need to obtain a work permit. The following conditions must be met to be eligible for a work permit:
- Have a valid Study Permit
- Intended employment must be part of your programme of study in Canada
- Have a letter from a responsible academic official of the institution
- Work or internship employment must not form more than 50% of your total program of study
To apply for a work permit, complete and mail the application form with the necessary documents. For more information, visit the guide for student work permits.
Do I need a Temporary Resident Visa?
Citizens and permanent residents of certain countries do not require a visa for entry to Canada. If you are from a designated country, you will need a Temporary Resident Visa.
How do I apply for a Temporary Resident Visa?
You do not need to make a separate application or pay a separate fee for a Temporary Resident Visa. An officer will issue the visa at the same time you receive the documentation necessary for entry to Canada as a student.
What documents will I need to show at the Point of Entry?
Make sure you have the following documents with you at the point of entry:
- Valid passport
- Letter of introduction confirming your Study Permit was approved, if required
- Valid Temporary Resident Visa, if required
- Copy of your acceptance letter from gostudylink recommended schools
- Proof of sufficient funds for the duration of your stay in Canada
- Reference letters or other documents recommended by your local Canadian visa
You may not gain entry to Canada if any of these documents are missing or incorrect.
Can I bring my husband, wife or civil partner and dependent children with me?
Yes, they may accompany you to Canada or join you at a later date. Your spouse must meet the requirements for temporary residents in Canada, and your children must meet the requirements for a Type A, B or C dependent child status. If they are to join you at a later date, they must make a separate application.
Can I leave and re-enter Canada?
Yes, as long as you have a valid passport or travel document and Study Permit (if applicable) with you. If you are required to have a Temporary Resident Visa, you will also need to have a valid entry visa to re-enter (unless you are returning to Canada from the United States or St-Pierre and Miquelon, and you return before the expiration period initially authorized for your entry).
Where can I get more advice and information?
Please visit the Citizenship and Immigration Canada site
Canada Visa Information courtesy of, and with thanks to, Kaplan International / Immigration Canada/ gostudylink.net and is correct at the time of going to press. Visa rules and regulations constantly change. It is your sole responsibility to ensure that you have the right visa for your intended course. The information provided herein by gostudylink aims to help you in making an informed choice.