International Students

Arrival and Orientation


Acadia University is excited to welcome all new international students beginning September 2022, and we encourage all new students to review our Welcome Week page as it becomes available in June.

Please keep an eye on this page for updates!

Travelling to Canada

Since January 15, 2022, all travellers must be fully vaccinated to enter Canada, unless exempt. This means that fully vaccinated students are allowed to enter Canada to attend a designated learning institution in Canada. However, if you are a minor (under the age of 18) and are not fully vaccinated, you are allowed to come to Canada if you are attending a designated learning institution with a COVID-19 readiness plan approved by the province or territory where the school is located, which Acadia University is.

For more information on travelling to Canada, please see IRCC’s COVID-19 vaccinated travellers entering Canada page.

Student VIP, in partnership with the ASU, will be administering the ASU Health, Dental and International Medical Plans starting September 1 if you are arriving for the fall semester or January 1st if you are arriving for the winter semester. Please contact if you have any questions about the health plan.

Students who are arriving at Acadia University before September 1 or January 1 are strongly encouraged to consider purchasing travel insurance to cover any medical expenses you may have in Canada before these dates.

As of February 28, 2022:

  • Travellers arriving to Canada from any country, who qualify as fully vaccinated, will no longer be required to complete an arrival test but may be randomly selected for arrival testing and will not be required to quarantine while awaiting their test result.
  • Children under 12 years old, travelling with fully vaccinated adults, will no longer be imposed conditions following their arrival. For example, they no longer need to wait 14 days before attending school, camp, or daycare.
  • Travellers will have the option of using a COVID-19 rapid antigen test result (taken the day prior to their scheduled flight or arrival at the land border or marine port of entry) OR a molecular test result (taken no more than 72 hours before their scheduled flight or arrival at the land border or marine port of entry) to meet the pre-entry testing requirements. The rapid antigen test must be authorized by the country in which it was purchased and must be administered by a laboratory, healthcare entity or telehealth service.
  • Unvaccinated travellers will continue to be required to test on arrival, on Day 8 and quarantine for 14 days. Unvaccinated foreign nationals will not be permitted to enter Canada unless they meet one of the few exemptions.
  • Foreign nationals who don’t qualify as fully vaccinated and who don’t permanently reside in Canada will be allowed to depart Canada up until August 31, 2022. They must also show proof of a valid COVID-19 test result at the time of boarding. After August 31, 2022, foreign nationals will need to be fully vaccinated in order to board a flight or train to depart Canada.

Canadian immigration laws and procedures are ever-changing, so please refer to COVID-19: Travel, Quarantine and Borders site for the most recent information. In the event of a discrepancy regarding the information provided on this website, IRCC and Government of Canada take precedent.

Travel Documents

  • A valid passport
  • A valid temporary resident visa (TRV) or electronic travel authorization (eTA)
  • Valid study permit or a study permit approval letter
  • Acceptance letter from a designated learning institution (DLI). For returning students, please provide proof of registration (request Letter of Verification of Enrolment and unofficial transcript from the Registrar's Office)
  • Proof of financial support for yourself
  • Download the ArriveCAN app to submit important information to the Canadian government, including your quarantine location within 48 hours of arrival or call 1-833-641-0343
  • You must have a negative COVID-19 test completed within 72 hours of boarding your flight.
  • 14-day quarantine (self-isolation) plan as a precaution, even if you are fully vaccinated

Learn more about considerations if you are traveling from within/entering/departing Canada.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Do I need a study permit to start my courses online?

Acadia is moving primarily to an in-person study model. Students are required to have a valid study permit and temporary visitor visa before beginning in-person studies in Canada. Without it, you will not be able to join in-person classes at Acadia.

Currently, you do not need a study permit to study online. However, if you do have classes on-line at Acadia, we strongly recommend that students apply for a study permit before beginning any online studies as there may be some risks associated with beginning your studies without a study permit.

Please note:

  • Choosing to join us virtually does not guarantee your ability to obtain a study permit. If you choose to move forward with your studies without a study permit in place, you are responsible for affiliated tuition fees.  Please review Acadia’s financial policies prior to making your decision.


2. How do I start my study permit application? Are they still processing applications?

You are required to apply online by creating an account with the Immigration, Refugees & Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Visit the IRCC website to learn more  and to start your study permit application.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) continues to accept applications, but applications are being processed at slower rates.  Processing times posted on the IRCC website are based on the normal processing times for an application, and it does not take into account any delays caused by COVID-19. Currently, there are no options to expedite processing of study permit applications. However, IRCC recently announced new measures to prioritize processing of study permit applications.

3. I received the Biometrics Instruction Letter (BIL) as part of my study permit application. How can I complete this?

Most VACs are now operating with limited hours and services. Check the VAC’s website before you go.

For the VACs that are reopening, new health and safety measures are in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. If your VAC is closed and you need to contact IRCC, using the webform. Do not go to a visa office.

For more information, please visit the Government of Canada's biometric information page and procedures page.

4. If I defer my program to next term, when should I apply for my study permit and temporary resident visa?

If you decide to defer your program to next term, you should start your study permit and temporary resident visa applications as soon as possible due to delays in processing. Please visit the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website for more information.

5. If my (initial) study permit is refused do I get back my tuition money?

Choosing to join us does not guarantee your ability to obtain a study permit. If you choose to move forward with your studies without a study permit in place, you are responsible for affiliated tuition fees.  Please review Acadia’s financial policies prior to making your decision.

6. What to do if I can’t provide the required documents for my application?

If you cannot provide all the documents required for your study permit application, you must provide a letter of explanation stating why you can’t submit all the required documents. You must also provide a letter of acceptance from the DLI when you apply. For more information regarding this, please visit  letter of explanation for any documents that are missing.

7. What documents do I need to enter Canada as an international student?

As stated by IRCC, International Student Entering Canada must have:

Please review our Travel Documents Checklist for more.

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Important Links

Winter 2022 orientation videos 

 International post-secondary students during COVID-19


International Students
Wong International Centre
27 Acadia Street
Wolfville, Nova Scotia, B4P 2R6