Frequent questions

Answers to many common questions are presented below.

If you still need assistance, the UVic Exchange Program team is available to help by email at: 

How do I get a bus pass?

  • As an exchange student, you will not be automatically charged the student bus pass fee. This means that you need to manually purchase the student bus pass.
  • To purchse the bus pass, you must opt in to the UVic U-Pass Package using either of the below methods:
    • Online enrolment: Visit the U-Pass webpage and follow the instructions under “How to pay for your pass”.
    • In-person enrolment: Visit the UVSS Info Booth in-person once you have arrived in Victoria to purchase the U-Pass and activate your ONECard.
Please note:
  • Whether you choose to enrol through the online or in-person method, you still need to visit the UVic campus in order to activate your U-Pass (via your ONECard) at one of the activation terminals in the Jamie Cassels Centre(formerly named the University Centre) or the SUB.

Is there a gym/fitness centre on campus? If yes, how do I get a pass?

Please note:
  • If you have already opted-in to the U-Pass Package, you will have already paid the required ‘Athletics and Recreation’ fee, and therefore will be eligible for the “Fees paid w/ tuition” membership options. If you have not yet (or do not plan to) opt-in to the U-Pass Package, then you will need to pay the “Fees not paid w/ tuition” membership fees.

At my home university, I have specific academic accommodations. Can I get these same accommodations in place at UVic?

  • Yes. You can get the specific academic supports/accommodations (e.g. separate test writing space, longer time to take tests etc.) that you have at your home university.
  • UVic’s Centre for Accessible Learning (CAL) has many supports available to students, and can be utilized by exchange students. If you are comfortable doing so, please let the ICS Exchange Team know that you wish to register with CAL, and we will help connect you. If you instead wish to contact the CAL team directly, please see their registration instructions here.

Am I required to use the UVic health insurance?

Is on-campus housing guaranteed at UVic?

  • No. Unfortunately, on-campus housing at UVic is too limited to guarantee spaces to exchange students. However, we still encourage students to apply for on-campus housing.
Please note:
  • If you're a student with a disability or a chronic health condition, you may be eligible for priority consideration for on-campus housing. If you are comfortable doing so, please let the ICS Exchange Team know this once you have been admitted to UVic.

Can I get help with applying for my Canadian immigration documents?

  • The International Centre for Students has a team of immigration experts (the International Student Advising team) that can advise you on your Canadian immigration documents. See here for all the ways you can connect with an International Student Adviser.
Please note:
  • Exchange students must be nominated to UVic before receiving support from the International Student Advising team. 

If I do not get in to on-campus housing, how can I find housing off-campus?

  • There are two options if you do not get a space in UVic’s on-campus housing:
    1. Apply for the UVic Homestay program, where you will live with a host family in Victoria.
    2. Search for off-campus rentals. For the most up-to-date resources on off-campus rentals (not homestay housing), please visit our Housing and finance Specifically visit the “Where to look for long-term accommodation?” section for online resources to help in your search.
  • If you need support in your search for housing, please email to be connected with our Housing and Settlement Adviser.