No doubt, transiting from the secondary school stage to post-secondary studies involves a lot of adjustments. In fact, it is a major life change for students who desire University education abroad.
While studying overseas can be overwhelming, it can become a disaster if you don’t have a few essential things handy before boarding an airplane. Don’t worry; we’ve got your back.
That is why we have put together 10 essential things you need as a prospective international student in Canada. If you have been admitted to a Canadian University, ensure you have these things handy before you arrive on campus.
Let’s get started:
1). Acceptance Letter
If you’ve been offered admission by a Canadian university, the school authorities will send an acceptance letter via mail to you. You need to print this acceptance letter, endorse it, and get it ready for the next stage. You would provide this acceptance letter when applying for a study permit (this would be discussed later) with the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
2). Government ID
Even though you have an international passport, which qualifies you to travel internationally, you still need to bring alone other forms of government ID like an Insurance card or driver’s license from your country of origin.
In addition, before you book a Canadian-borne flight, check to confirm that your passport still has a minimum of six months validity. Otherwise, your application for a study permit would be rejected. If the validity period of your passport is less than six months, then you need to apply for a new one at your earliest convenience.
The last thing you want to deal with when you get to Canada is queuing up at the Embassy to apply for a new passport.
3). Funds for Living Expenses
Funding your living expenses is very important, as it is part of the requirements before your visa and study permit would be approved.
You would need to show proof of financial support to the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) before a study permit can be issued.
If you’re planning to study outside Quebec, then you need to show financial support of at least $10, 000 CAD in addition to the cost of your tuition. The cost of living with Quebec is around $11,000 CAD.
The following can serve as proof of financial support:
- Proof of a bank account in Canada in your name
- Proof of an educational loan from a recognized bank
- The statement of your bank account within the last four months
- A bank draft which can be converted to Canadian dollars
- Proof of tuition and housing payment
- Proof of scholarship if you’ve been offered any
4). Funds for Tuition
Compared to countries like the United States, the UK, and Australia, the cost of tuition is relatively cheap in Canada.
The cost varies according to the academic program, institution, and the location. On average, the cost of earning a Bachelor’s degree is between $10,000 to $30,000 per year. You can pay for your tuition from your country of origin using PayPal, bank deposit, Western Union or Credit card.
5). Study Permit
A study permit is an important document that should be in your possession. The study permit serves as a student visa throughout the duration of your academic program. However, if the course you are putting in for is less than six months, then you don’t need a study permit.
Like we mentioned earlier, to apply for a study permit, you’d show proof of identity, proof of financial support, and proof of acceptance (the first three things on this list). You can apply to the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) either online or through a paper application.
6). Medical Records and Prescriptions
Depending on your home country, you might be required to pass a certain medical examination before arriving in Canada. Ensure you arrive to campus with a copy of the medical examination result.
7). Tech Supplies and Gadgets
It is typical for most students in Canada to study using a laptop. It enhances their ability to learn. If you’re bringing a laptop from home, ensure it is in a good condition. You will also need a smartphone to keep in constant touch with your friends and family members.
8). Housing and Accommodations
There are a lot of housing or accommodation options in Canada but staying in the University’s hostel is a no-brainer since it would help you access the lecture halls and other facilities of the school. However, if you don’t want to stay around the school vicinity, you can consider the housing and accommodation options like YES Canada or Canada Homestay Network.
9). Emergency Contact List
If you choose to rely on your smartphone in the event of an emergency, then you are wrong! Try and create a list of emergency contacts as soon as you arrive to campus. The list should consist of contact of your parent, siblings, relatives, and local friends.
10). Winter Clothes
If you live in a country where the weather is always sunny, then living and schooling in Canada can be a shock to you.
Between Septembers to December, you’ll experience a few sunny days and a few rainy days. In fact, during winter, the temperature can drop to as low as -6°C. So, you will need winter clothes before you arrive in Canada.
There are lots of reasons why Canada is a choice destination for international students. With a globally recognized industry, world-class schools, wide-ranging cultural experiences, and breathtaking natural sites, there is so much to see and learn.
Just follow through the above 10 lists and you would be on your way to making Canada your second home.