Travel and Isolation Information for International Students

Important Updates:

Updated May 13, 2022.

  • As of April 25, 2022, at 00:01:00 EDT, the following changes were made to border entry requirements:
    • All fully vaccinated travellers are no longer required to provide a quarantine plan upon entry.
    • Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated children aged 5-11 accompanied by a fully vaccinated parent, step-parent, guardian or tutor are no longer required to complete a pre-entry COVID-19 test. These individuals are also not required to provide a quarantine plan upon entry.
  • To access the most recent news release issued April 22nd, 2022, please click here
  • To find out if you can enter Canada, please click here.
  • IRCC has released details of the Canada-Ukraine Authorization for Emergency Travel. Find more information for students and study permit holders here.
  • Ukrainian nationals and their family members who are not vaccinated or are partially vaccinated can enter Canada. Click here to find out more about exemptions to the vaccination requirement for Ukrainian nationals and their family members.
  • Unvaccinated international students travelling to Canada, who are under 18 years of age, must register with the Off-Campus Isolation and Travel Registry (OCITR) to ensure they have an acceptable quarantine plan. Quarantine information is part of the mandatory information unvaccinated travellers must enter via ArriveCAN. The OCITR is a required component of the University's federally approved plan for facilitating international students' entry to Canada.
For current border measures and requirements, visit the Government of Canada for the most recent updates. 

 Learn more at the Canada Border Services Agency Website

Check if you qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller.

 
Vaccines and Travel to Canada

Fully Vaccinated Students

Fully vaccinated students who have received a complete series of vaccines at least 14 days before the day they enter Canada to study at the University of Alberta may be exempt from the quarantine requirement.

To qualify, you must:

You can receive your vaccine in any country, but you must provide documentation in English or French supporting your vaccination information. If your vaccination document is in any other language, it must have a certified translation. 

Fully vaccinated students arriving from any country can expect to be randomly selected to take an arrival COVID test upon entry. If a fully vaccinated traveller or unvaccinated child under 12 years of age tests positive, they must isolate for ten days and report their test results and/or symptoms to PHAC by calling 1-833-641-0343.

Unvaccinated students travelling to Canada who are under 18 years of age must register with the Off-Campus Isolation and Travel Registry (OCITRbefore their scheduled flight to Canada to ensure they have an acceptable quarantine plan. 

Fully vaccinated students travelling to Canada are encouraged to enter their travel information in the Off-Campus Isolation and Travel Registry (OCITR); however, they are not required to provide a quarantine plan.

The OCITR remains a required component of the University's federally approved plan for facilitating international students' entry to Canada.

Review what other documents you need to enter Canada. 

Fully Vaccinated Short-Term Students:

If you qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller, you may enter Canada for studies of less than six months as long as you have a valid visitor visa or eTA. If you enter Canada as a fully vaccinated short-term student (e.g. one-term exchange student) without a valid study permit, you are not eligible to work during your studies in Canada.

Students Not Considered Fully Vaccinated

Unvaccinated adult students (aged 18 years or older) are not allowed entry to Canada. The only unvaccinated students allowed to enter Canada are minor students (under 18 years of age), Ukrainian nationals and their immediate family members.

If you enter Canada as a non-fully vaccinated minor, you are required to register with the Off-Campus Isolation and Travel Registry (OCITR) and submit your quarantine plan to isolationoffcampus@ualberta.ca for approval. Note: Fully vaccinated students are not required to submit a plan for approval to the University.

Review what other documents you need to enter Canada.

Unvaccinated Travellers Register Your Travel Information

Students Travelling with Unvaccinated Children and/or Dependent Family Members
If you are fully vaccinated but will be travelling with children and/or adult dependents who are unvaccinated, you must follow the respective quarantine requirements.
Fully Vaccinated Travellers Entering for Discretionary (Non-essential) Purposes

Fully vaccinated foreign nationals with valid TRVs or eTAs may be eligible to enter Canada for discretionary (non-essential) reasons, such as tourism.

Exchange Students: If you qualify as a fully vaccinated short-term/exchange student, you may enter Canada for studies of less than six months as long as you have a valid visitor visa or eTA. Exchange students who want to work during their studies in Canada or who will be coming for longer than six months are still required to apply for a study permit.

PGWP Holders: Fully vaccinated students who will have a valid Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) and visa (where applicable) or an approval for a PGWP made outside Canada may be allowed entry without the requirement for a valid job offer if you qualify as a fully-vaccinated traveller.

Learn more about Government of Canada Requirements and Exemptions


Frequently Asked Questions

I am considered fully vaccinated in Canada and plan to travel to Canada to start/continue my study program; do I still need a quarantine plan?

Effective April 25, 2022, all fully vaccinated travellers will no longer be required to provide a quarantine plan upon entry. All fully vaccinated travellers must still enter mandatory information via ArriveCan. If the CBSA officer determines you need to quarantine or are selected to do an arrival test and your test result comes back positive, you will be required to quarantine. 

Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated students under the age of 18 years of age must register in the Off-Campus Isolation and Travel Registry (OCITR) and email their quarantine plan to isolationoffcampus@ualberta.ca for approval at least one week prior to their arrival in Canada.

I am an international student who is not fully vaccinated with a Canada-approved vaccine; can I come to Canada?

Adult travellers not considered fully vaccinated by the Canadian Government cannot enter Canada. Only if you are under 18 years old at the time of entry or you are a Ukrainian national or their immediate family member, you will be allowed to enter Canada without having full vaccination status. If you don’t qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller, click here to find out if you can enter Canada.

See what required documents you need upon entry.

I am currently an international student in Canada and have plans to visit my family in my home country; what do I have to consider?

If you are currently in Canada, please ensure you are fully vaccinated before making any travel plans. Otherwise, you will not be allowed to re-enter Canada.

Make sure to have the needed documents upon entry.

It is advisable to avoid non-essential travel when you can; given the ever-changing COVID situation, if new travel restrictions get imposed, they may prevent you from returning to Canada as planned.

Read COVID-19 Vaccinations and the U of A 


Isolation and Quarantine Information

All new and returning international students, who under the age of 18 years of age and are not fully vaccinated, must register their travel and quarantine plans through the Off-Campus Isolation and Travel Registry (OCITR). The University is in touch with the students registered in this program and will continue to support them as they travel to Canada. Students should register their travel plans if they have yet to do so.

Please note: International students who are over the age of 18 years and are not fully vaccinated do not meet the eligibility requirements to enter Canada. 

Let us know when you will arrive and where you plan to stay in case you are required to quarantine. All registrants receive a personalized check-in. Please submit your quarantine plan at least one week before you travel.

Documents to Enter Canada

To enter Canada as a student, you must meet the following requirements:

  1. You must be attending a Designated Learning Institution (DLI), the list of DLIs with approved COVID-19 readiness plans. UAlberta, listed on page 6, DLI# O19257171832 (the first digit is the letter "O," not the number zero). 
  2. You must hold a valid study permit or a Port of Entry (POE) Letter of Introduction that shows your study permit approval if you will be attending a study program that is longer than six months in length. Exchange students who intend to study in Canada for less than six months may enter using a valid visa or an eTA.
  3. Be fully vaccinated and have the respective vaccination certificate/record. If you don’t qualify as fully vaccinated, find out if you can enter Canada.

We strongly advise that fully vaccinated students carry with them the following documents upon entry to Canada:

New students, documents include:

  • Port of Entry (POE) Letter of Introduction if you are attending a study program that is longer than six months. The POE Letter of Introduction is not your study or work permit. Exchange students intending to study in Canada for less than six months may enter using a valid visa or an eTA.
  • Valid Visa/eTA as applicable
  • Admission letter
  • Financial documents used in your application as proof that you will be able to support yourself (and your family in the event you will be entering together)
  • Approved quarantine plan (only required if you are a minor student under the age of 18 years of age who is not fully vaccinated)
  • Proof of vaccination
  • Your ArriveCAN receipt
  • Valid IRCC medical exam; if your original exam expires at the time of entry, you are advised to complete a new medical exam.
Note: If you are a new student entering Canada after starting your program, request your Verification of Enrollment document from Beartracks. You need this in addition to the admission letter listed above to verify your enrollment at UAlberta upon entry.

Returning students, documents include:

  • Valid Study Permit
  • Valid Visa/eTA as applicable
  • Verification of Enrollment (request through Bear Tracks)
  • Unofficial transcript (print out from Bear Tracks)
  • Approved quarantine plan (only required if you are a minor student under the age of 18 years of age who is not fully vaccinated)
  • Proof of vaccination
  • Your ArriveCAN receipt
  • Valid IRCC medical exam if you have been living in a designated country for over six months in the past 12 months
In addition to the documents listed above, students who received confirmation that a third party (e.g. airline) is asking for a letter to support their travel to Canada can request the Essential Travel letter by following the relevant instructions. If a third party does not request this letter, students do not need to have it along with the documents listed above.


Important Notes:

  • All international student travellers, regardless of vaccination status, who do not submit the required information digitally before entry could be subject to enforcement action upon entry ranging from a verbal warning to a monetary fine anywhere between $1000 - $3000. Exceptions will be made for those unable to submit documents electronically due to personal circumstances such as a disability or inadequate infrastructure.
       Learn about ArriveCAN  

  • The University of Alberta is listed approved on the institution's COVID-19 readiness plan.
  • The IRCC will only issue Port of Entry Letters of Introduction when students secure "final" approval. Do not make any travel arrangements until a final decision on your study permit application has been made.
  • If you experience difficulty submitting your information through ArriveCAN (using the app or online website), you can find additional information at Canada.ca/ArriveCAN or email phac.arrivecan.aspc@canada.ca.
  • A border services officer will ultimately make the final decision on whether you are eligible to enter Canada when you arrive. For quarantine plan details, visit the Government of Canada website: Without Symptoms: Mandatory Quarantine. If applicable, review Where you can quarantine, see Quarantine with others in the same household.  

Questions?

Read frequently asked questions about immigration, travel and employment. 

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