Travelling to Canada

Government of Canada adjusting entry requirements for travellers

As of January 15, 2022, international students (18 years or older) will only be allowed to enter the country if they are fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved for entry into Canada.

For more details review: Backgrounder and News release


Government of Canada to accept additional vaccines for travel

Starting November 30, 2021, 03:01 AM EST, three additional COVID-19 vaccines approved for use by the World Health Organization will be accepted for travel to and within Canada.

  • Sinopharm (also referred to as Covilo)
  • Sinovac (also referred to as Coronavac)
  • COVAXIN

For more details review: Backgrounder


Vaccination requirements for travel in Canada

Starting October 30, 2021, if you are 12 years of age plus four months, or older, you will need to be fully vaccinated in order to board:

  • domestic or international flights departing from most airports in Canada, including charter and foreign airlines carrying commercial passengers
  • VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer trains

From October 30 through November 29, 2021, there will be a short transition period when travellers who don’t qualify as fully vaccinated will be able to travel if they can show a valid COVID-19 molecular test taken within 72 hours of travel.

For more details review: COVID-19 Boarding flights and trains in Canada


Before you travel, if you have questions about the timing of your arrival, you should contact your airline and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) for more information. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, restrictions have been put in place that limit travel to Canada. Please make sure to follow the guidelines from the Government of Canada website to plan your arrival to Canada.

1. Meet the requirements for entry in to Canada

While travel restrictions due to COVID-19 are in place, you must meet the following requirements to enter Canada as a student:

  1. You must have a valid study permit or a letter of introduction that shows you were approved for a study permit.
  2. You must be attending a designated learning institution (DLI) with a COVID-19 readiness plan. The University of Victoria is a DLI, and has an approved plan in place.

As a student, you will not be able to travel to Canada if:

  • your study program has been cancelled or suspended
  • you are entering Canada for any reason other than to study

A border services officer (BSO) will make the final decision on whether you're eligible to enter Canada when you arrive. When the border services officer greets you, they consider:

  • your reason for travelling to Canada
  • your ability to complete a 14-day quarantine period (unless you are exempt) as soon as you arrive at your final destination
  • if you either:
    • have time to complete your quarantine before you physically attend classes, or
    • can study online during your quarantine

Please check with your airline and Canada Border Services Agency if you have questions about the timing of your travel to Canada. A Border Services Officer will make a final decision on your eligibility to enter Canada when you arrive.

If you have any concerns before you travel, you can speak with an international student adviser or you can contact the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) for more information.

2. Arrange for all documents required for travel to Canada

Students may not travel to Canada for their studies without the necessary documentation. You will be required to show your documents at the Canadian port of entry. Students who have not yet applied for a study permit should be advised that the processing times can be very lengthy, so please make arrangements well in advance of your planned travel.

If you have any questions about documentation requirements, please contact an international student adviser.

3. Submit required documents related your self-isolation (quarantine) plans

Regardless of your mode of travel, within 72 hours before you arrive to Canada, all students must submit their 14-day self-isolation (quarantine) plans to:

For more information, please go to UVic Self-Isolation Program, Registration Requirements.

4. Prepare for self-isolation on arrival to Canada

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, restrictions have been put in place on travel to Canada.

Depending on whether or not you are fully vaccinated with a Health Canada approved vaccine, and your mode of travel, there are different self-isolation (quarantine) requirements. For information and resources about making your self-isolation (quarantine) plans, please go to the UVic Self-Isolation Program page. 

International Centre for Students and the University of Victoria are here to support you throughout your time in self-isolation. For more information, see the UVic Self-isolation Program page for more information.

Students should ensure they have reviewed the Government of Canada information before finalizing travel plans. If you have questions, or need assistance with your planning, please email icsinfo@uvic.ca.