Do you want to study in the US? Yes

Before you apply

Before you apply for student visa to Canada, also called study permit, you need an acceptance letter from a school approved by a provincial or territorial government to host international students, also called Designated Learning Institution (DLI).

This is especially helpful for an international student like you to ensure that you get into an accredited institution and not some phony school that sells worthless college diplomas and transcripts. While we are on this topic, check out this CBS News article about the billion dollar fake diploma industry.

Getting back to the topic, you will be required to mention the DLI number of the school in your study permit application form. Check http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/study/study-institutions-list.asp to find out if your school is listed as a DLI.

You must also:

  • have a valid passport
  • provide proof that you have enough money to pay for your tuition and living expenses and that you can afford return tickets to your home country
  • have a report of good health – read below about medical examination, and
  • convince an immigration officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your studies

How to apply Online

The process to acquire a student visa for Canada can be simple and hassle-free. Here is a list of steps to help you apply for a visa on your own through the Government of Canada Immigration website.

  1. Create an account or Sign in if you already have an account at http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/e-services/account.asp. With this account you can apply for visa online, pay the visa fee and check the status of your visa application.
  2. You would be asked a few questions. Go ahead and answer about what you would like to study, for how long and other details about your background. After submitting these answers you will get an email with your login and password.
  3. Login to your account at the secure Government of Canada’s online service, called GCKey with the login and password that you receive in an email.
  4. Upload all the documents that have been requested.
  5. Pay the visa fee from your account. For Indian students, this fee amount is CAN$150 (~Rs 7,400).
  6. You can track the status of your visa application from your account.
  7. Your visa will take around 6-8 weeks.

How to apply offline through VAC

You can apply for Canada student visa offline through Visa Application Centers (VAC) of VFS Global.

VFS Global is the exclusive service provider for the Government of Canada, authorized to provide administrative support services to visa applicants in India. VFS Global charges for its services. You can learn more about their services at their website: https://www.vfsglobal.ca/canada/india/

Application for a Canada Study Permit: Generic checklist

The checklist below should be used in conjunction with the IMM 5483 Document Checklist for a Study Permit.

Failure to submit all required documentation, or the provision of any false statement or submission of fraudulent documents may result in the refusal of your visa or delay the processing time.

A medical exam is required for a study program that exceeds 6 months.

When submitting your completed and signed application form, be sure to include the barcode page.

The following documents are required to apply for your visa for general university programs (i.e. non-SPP):

  • Original passport that is valid for the duration of proposed study
  • 2 passport sized photographs (size 35mm width and 45mm height with a white background and be taken in the past six months)
  • Study permit questionnaire
  • Letter of acceptance from your school stating that you’ve got unconditional admission along with program, degree, duration and start date of study
  • Application Forms
  • IELTS Test Results from within last 24 months with overall band not less than 6.0 bands with no bands less than 5.5
  • Photocopies of the most recent education qualifications along with all the individual mark sheets
  • Copy of payment receipts issued by Canadian Educational Institution. Pre-payment of first semester fees or amount as mentioned in the offer letter is mandatory.
  • Copy of Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) of CAD $ 10,000 (Recommended)
  • Copy of proof of completion of Medical Examination
  • For proof of availability of funds to cover living expenses of first year in Canada, apart from GIC, a student may show an Education Loan from an Approved Bank
  • If your sponsor has personal funds or savings then the bank statements with the transaction history of at least 3 months should be included when filing for visa
  • Form 16, in case you have been working, or Income Tax Return documents of the Sponsor should be included as well
  • Do not provide any additional documents unless these are requested by a Visa Officer.

Application for a Canada Study Permit: SPP Checklist

SPP or the Student Partners Program is a program introduced by the Canadian government to specifically aide Indian students, who wish to study and eventually work in Canada. Learn more – Canada’s SPP: All You Need to Know

If you are applying under SPP, you must undergo a medical examination before submitting your Study Permit application by visiting one of the designated panel physicians in India. After completion of your medical examination, the panel physician will provide you with a copy of your medical examination form. This form must be submitted together with your Study Permit application one week after your medical examination.

The checklist below should be used in conjunction with the IMM 5483 Document Checklist for a Study Permit.

Failure to submit all required documentation or providing false statement or the submission of fraudulent documents may result in refusal of your visa or delay the processing time.

When submitting your completed and signed application form, be sure to include the barcode page.

Following are the documents you would need to apply for visa for SPP programs:

  • Original passport that is valid for the duration of proposed study
  • 2 passport sized photographs (size 35mm width and 45mm height with a white background and be taken in the past six months)
  • Application Forms
  • Letter of acceptance from your SPP school stating that you’ve got unconditional admission along with program, degree, duration and start date of study
  • IELTS Test Results from within last 24 months with overall band not less than 6.0 bands with no bands less than 5.5
  • Photocopies of the most recent education qualifications along with all the individual mark sheets
  • Copy of payment receipts issued by your school. Pre-payment of first semester fees or amount as mentioned in the offer letter is mandatory
  • Copy of Guaranteed Investment Certificate of CAD $ 10,000 (Compulsory)
  • Copy of proof of completion of Medical Examination.
  • Do not provide any additional documents unless these are requested by a Visa Officer

How to Get a Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC)

You will require approximately $10,000 CAD per year, not including tuition fees, to cover your living expenses. This requirement is fulfilled through the purchase of a participating GIC, and evidence that you have paid your tuition fee.

If you are going to pursue the SPP program, you are required to open a GIC.

Even in the case of a general university degree, we highly recommend opening a GIC account. Although in this case, you also have the option to submit a copy of the receipt of the advance tuition fee that you’ve paid to your school and either,

  • a copy of the sanction letter of an educational loan from an Indian Chartered Bank for an amount equivalent of CAD$ 10,000, or
  • show an amount equivalent of CAD$ 10,000 from your savings like PPF, FD or liquid cash (preferably 3 months old)

At present, Scotiabank and ICICI Bank Canada are the only participating Canadian financial institutions.

You open a GIC account with either of the above banks. Your GIC account is an investment account that offers a guaranteed interest rate over a fixed period of time:

  • $2,000 CAD plus any accrued interest will be deposited into your personal bank account when you arrive in Canada.
  • Each month, for 12 months, you’ll receive a portion of the balance of your investment back, plus interest.
  • You can use these funds to help pay for living expenses while you’re studying in Canada.
  • After 12 months, you’ll have received your $10,000 CAD investment back
  • The fee for this program is $200 CAD.

Visit Scotiabank’s website at https://apps.scotiabank.com/cgi-bin/intl/mcbg/mcbg.cgi to apply online for your GIC account. The application process is straight forward and simple to understand. You will have to remit $10,200 CAD to Scotiabank, which includes $200CAD for administrative fees.

ICICI bank has a similar process, detailed at http://www.icicibank.ca/personal/newcomers/overview.page. Advantage is ICICI bank charges only $150 CAD towards administrative fee. So you save $50 CAD!

Medical Examination

You will need to get a medical examination done by visiting one of the Designated Medical Practitioners in India. The medical examination cannot be performed by the personal family physician of the student.

Under SPP it is mandatory to complete a medical examination prior to submission of the visa application. However, under the University/Generic Category, it is advised to complete it in advance to hasten the visa processing time.

Documents to be carried to the Medical Test Venue:

  • 5 recent passport sized photographs with white background
  • Your passport
  • Offer letter from your school in Canada
  • The Medical Report form. Only required if you are not undergoing an up-front medical exam. This form will be sent by the visa officer to the student
  • Note: It is important that the doctor is informed about any previous or existing medical conditions. If this is not done, processing the medical exam could take longer. Medical results are valid for one year

Doctors for medical examination

Following are physicians/doctors whom you can consult for your medical examination:

City Doctors

Ahmedabad

 Dr Naresh Himtani, (91-079) 66701800
Apollo Hospitals International Ltd., Plot No. 1 A, BHAT GIDC Estate, Gujarat, 382428
 Bangalore Dr Girikumar Venati, (080) 66214444 / 22544444
Fortis Hospitals, 154/9, Bannerghatta Road, Karnataka, 560076
 Chandigarh  Dr Sachin Pandove, (0172) 6652000
Max Super Speciality Hospital, Phase – 6, (Near Civil Hospital), Mohali, 160055
 Chennai  Dr D. Subbulakshmi, (044) 60601066, 28296900, 28296901
The Apollo Heart Centre, 156, Greams Road, Tamil Nadu, 600 006
 Hyderabad  Dr Raj Kumar Songa, (040) 29806789
Centre for Migration Medicine, #3-6-20 Street No. 19, Himayatnagar, Andhra Pradesh, 500029
 Kolkata  Dr Santanu Chatterjee, (033) 24546142 / 21492603
Pulse Diagnostics Pvt. Ltd., 75, Sarat Bose Road, West Bengal, 700 026
 New Delhi  Dr Sandeep Budhiraja, 8800334457/8860444888
Max Medcentre, N-110, Panchsheel Park, 110 017
 Mumbai  Dr Frainy Palia, (022) 23684764 / 23684765 / 61196200
Clinical Diagnostic Centre, A-2, Ben Nevis, Bhulabhai, Desai Road, Nr. Tata Garden, Next to Indian Oil Petrol Pump, Maharashtra, 400036
 Pune  Dr Purvez Grant, (020) 26163391
Ruby Hall Clinic, 40, Sassoon Road, Maharashtra, 411 001
 Trivandrum  Dr Ajit Thomas, (91-0471) 3041312
Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS), Anayala, P.B. No 1, Kerala, 695 029

 

Study Permit Questionnaire

You need to answer the following questions and submit these along with your visa application:

  1. Disclose the name of the agent or representative who assisted you with your admission forms and study permit application. Failure to disclose an agent or representative could negatively affect the decision on your study permit application.
  2. Provide the details of your education and work experience since the age of 18. Start with the most recent information. Under “Activity” write your course of study or the details of your job if you were working. If you were not working or studying, provide information on what you were doing. For example: unemployed, traveling, etc. DO NOT leave any gaps.
  3. Complete the following chart with regard to a) your parents and b) any other individual, including yourself, who is a primary financial support for your program of studies, wherever applicable.
  4. If your course of study includes English as a second language (ESL) component, please explain how long it will take to complete English as a second language (ESL) requirement and how much it will cost.

Common Questions

When should I apply for my study permit?

You should apply as soon as you receive your letter of acceptance.

We strongly recommend that you submit your application at least three months ahead of your proposed date of travel. Applications that are received after 01 April for May entry, after 01 August for September entry and after 01 December for January entry will not normally be processed in time for the start of classes and may be refused.

How much does the visa application fee cost?

The Visa Application Fees is Rs. 7,400 (C$150). In addition, there is a service charge of Rs. 746 by VFS for visa processing.

What are the documents I need to submit along with my visa application?

You need to submit the following documents (there is more information in the Visa Application Process section of the website):

  • Application Form
  • Family Information Form
  • Study Permit Questionnaire (along with checklist)
  • VFS Consent Form
  • Use of Representative Form (If applicable)
  • SPP/University/Generic Checklist – As applicable.

How long does it take to get a student visa?

It varies from country to country. If you have applied online from India, it would take you around 6 to 8 weeks.

How do I check if my visa application has been received?

Assuming you have applied online, which in fact is the best way, you will see a confirmation page after you submit your application. You will also receive an email asking you to check your account. A confirmation message with a confirmation number will be in your account. Keep your confirmation number for your records. Please note that it may take a few hours for you to receive an email from IRCC after you’ve submitted your application.

How can I check the status of my visa application?

Assuming you have applied online, sign in to your account and check under View my submitted application or profile > check status and messages.

I am an international student in Canada. Can I work while studying?

Yes, you are eligible to work in Canada, while you are studying as well as after you graduate. As a study permit (i.e. student visa) holder, you can work on-campus or off-campus without an additional work permit.

Working on-campus:

  • You would need a Social Insurance Number (SIN) to work in Canada. There is no fee for it and you just need to have mentioned on your study permit that you accept employment on the campus. Even if it’s not mentioned, you can get it added later
  • “On-campus” refers to all the buildings on your school campus, including other campuses of your school, if any
  • Your on-campus employer could be your school, faculty members, student organization, a private business or a contractor, or you may also be self-employed

Working off-campus:

  • You would need a Social Insurance Number (SIN)
  • You may work 20 hrs. per week off-campus, or full-time during regular breaks, such as the winter and summer holidays or spring break

There are several requirements and restrictions for working on-campus or off-campus, check on http://www.cic.gc.ca website, and you must abide by these rules.

If your program includes an essential co-op or internship component, you will need to apply for a work permit.

You may also apply for a post-graduation work permit to continue working in Canada after you graduate from an eligible institution.

I am an international student. Can I return home or travel outside Canada during my studies?

Yes. Along with your student permit, you would need a temporary resident visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).

I want to change my school or program. How can I change my study permit?

You may change your school, program, field of study or level of study (e.g. from the Bachelor level to the Masters level) without applying for a new study permit. You do not need to apply for a change to the condition of your study permit, either. You may continue to use your study permit as long as it is valid.

What is GCKey?

A GCKey lets you securely access the Government of Canada’s online services. It includes a username and password that you choose. You also must create security questions. This keeps your data secure and lets you recover your account. You use GCKey to login to your online visa application account. Check it out here – https://clegc-gckey.gc.ca/j/eng/l

How can I review or modify my answers in my online visa application?

To change or review your answers, click on “Modify my answers” in the top right corner. Click on “Modify” beside the answer you would like to update. When you’re done, click the “Return to your online application link at the bottom left of the page. If you do change an answer, you may need to update other answers or answer more questions based on your changes.

Where is Canadian High Commissions office in India?

Canadian High Commission,
7/8 Shantipath, Chanakyapuri,
New Delhi 110 021
India Telephone: 91 (11) 4178-2000
Fax: 91 (11) 4178-2031
E-mail: delhi-in-enquiry@international.gc.ca

In addition, there are several Consulates across India:

  1. Canadian Consulate General – Chandigarh (Responsible for applications from: Haryana, Chandigarh and Punjab)
  2. Canadian Consulate General – Bengaluru
  3. Canadian Consulate General – Mumbai

Which Indian banks can I turn to for an education loan to study in Canada?

The Education Loan must be provided by a bank governed by the Reserve Bank of India. All international banks operating in India also meet these criteria.

  • Andhra Bank
  • Allahabad Bank
  • AXIS Bank
  • Bank of Baroda
  • Bank of India
  • Bank of Maharashtra
  • Bank of Punjab
  • BNP Paribas
  • Canara Bank
  • Central Bank of India
  • Centurion Bank of Punjab
  • Citibank
  • Corporation Bank
  • Dena Bank
  • Federal Bank
  • HDFC Bank
  • Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC)
  • IDBI Bank
  • Indian Overseas Bank
  • Indian Bank
  • Ing Vysya Bank
  • Indusind Bank
  • ICICI Bank
  • Jammu & Kashmir Bank
  • Karnataka Bank
  • Kotak Mahindra Bank
  • NOVA Scotia Bank
  • Oriental Bank of Commerce
  • Punjab National Bank
  • Punjab and Sind Bank
  • South Indian Bank
  • Standard Chartered Bank
  • State Bank of India
  • State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur
  • State Bank of Hyderabad
  • State Bank of Indore
  • State Bank of Mysore
  • State Bank of Patiala
  • State Bank of Saurashtra
  • State Bank of Travancore
  • Syndicate Bank
  • UCO Bank
  • Union Bank of Indi
  • Vijaya Bank

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