Canada International Students travel exemption – Updated July 4, 2021

Group of students with Canadian flags outdoors

UPDATED Canada International Students travel exemption July 4, 2021. Beginning July 5, 2021 at 12:01 a.m. EDT, exemption for fully vaccinated travellers (FVTs) including international students kicks in in Canada.

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Travellers arriving Canada by land or air, who are eligible to enter Canada and who comply with specific criteria will not be required to quarantine or complete a day-8 test.

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If you meet the requirements for fully vaccinated travellers to Canada AND you have a valid study permit to attend an approved Designated learning institution (DLI), you may be exempt from quarantine requirements.

You may pre-qualify for a Canada immigration program. 

DLIs are universities, colleges, and other educational institutions that are approved by federal and provincial government to admit international students.

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If you plan to come to Canada as an international student, your designated learning institutions must be on the list of government-approved COVID19 readiness plans before you travel.

Find out if your DLI is approved as coronavirus-ready at Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) List of DLIs with approved coronavirus readiness plan. IRCC will regularly update the list as more DLIs get their plans approved.

A Government of Canada official will make the final decision based on the information you provide when entering Canada.

Note: Restrictions to commercial and private passenger flights from India to Canada remain in effect until July 21, 2021

Please see ★ Canada exemptions for fully vaccinated travellers (FVTs).

Determine if you’re fully vaccinated

To be considered fully vaccinated, you must:

  • be eligible to enter Canada
  • have received the full series of an accepted COVID-19 vaccine or a combination of accepted vaccines
  • have received your last dose at least 14 days prior to the day you enter Canada
    • Example: if your last dose was anytime on Thursday July 1st, then Thursday July 15th would be the first day that you meet the 14 day condition
  • upload your proof of vaccination in ArriveCAN

Accepted vaccines

  • Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine
  • Moderna COVID-19 vaccine
  • AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD COVID-19 vaccine
  • Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccine – single dose

Vaccines not currently accepted for fully vaccinated status in Canada:

  • Bharat Biotech (Covaxin, BBV152 A, B, C)
  • Cansino (Convidecia, Ad5-nCoV)
  • Gamalaya (Sputnik V, Gam-Covid-Vac)
  • Sinopharm (BBIBP-CorV, Sinopharm-Wuhan)
  • Sinovac (CoronaVac, PiCoVacc)
  • Vector Institute (EpiVacCorona)
  • Other

The list of accepted vaccines may expand in the future.

If you received your vaccines outside Canada, it’s still accepted but proof of vaccination must be uploaded digitally in ArriveCAN app and must only be in French or English, or certified translation into French or English.

Proof of vaccination

You must use ArriveCAN to enter your proof of vaccination, quarantine and travel information

The new version of ArriveCAN was released on July 5, 2021.

If you don’t provide the required information in ArriveCAN before arriving at the border you won’t be considered for the exemption, even if you meet all the other requirements.

If you meet the exemption, you may receive notifications from ArriveCAN; however, you won’t be required to complete daily reporting.

Providing proof of your vaccination

In ArriveCAN, you must provide:

  • the details of your first dose (date, country and vaccine you received)
  • the details of your second dose if one was required (i.e., for Pfizer, Moderna, and AstraZeneca vaccines)
  • a photo or PDF file of the record of each dose of your vaccination, such as receipts, cards, or confirmations:
    • if you received two doses and they are both recorded on a single card or PDF, upload that same image or file for dose 1 and again for dose 2
    • file formats accepted: PDF, PNG, JPEG or JPG
    • maximum file size for upload: each image upload has a 2 MB size limit
  • preferred file format: if you received a PDF file of your vaccination record, upload the PDF rather than an image, since the PDF is clearer and easier to read
  • these must be in English, French, or a certified translation into English or French

Providing a certified translation if your proof is not in French or English

Use ArriveCAN – download the mobile app or sign in online

No exceptions for partially-vaccinated travellers

At this time, there are no exemptions from testing, hotel stopover or quarantine for travellers who haven’t received the full series of a vaccine or a combination of vaccines accepted by the Government of Canada.

International students’ accompanying family members

Under the international students travel exemption, immediate family members may be able to accompany an international student to Canada if their reason for travel is non-optional or non-discretionary, such as getting established in Canada in support of the principal applicant’s study program. This could include a spouse or common-law partner, a dependant, or in the case of a minor child who will be studying in Canada, a parent or legal guardian.

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