Travelling to Canada during COVID-19

If you're an international student, there are important things to know before you plan to travel to Canada

Latest updates

The information on this page is based on information available at the time of publishing and may not always be up to date.

As of November 30, 2021, fully vaccinated travellers who have been in any country other than Canada and the United States in the 14 days prior to entry to Canada may be selected for testing when they arrive and must quarantine in a suitable place while waiting for the on arrival test result. You may take public transportation, such as connecting flights, to your place of quarantine.

At this time requirements for unvaccinated travellers have not changed. Unvaccinated foreign nationals may take public transportation, such as connecting flights, to your place of quarantine within 24 hours after your Canada-bound flight departs. The November 30 news release states unvaccinated travellers with right of entry to Canada will continue to be tested on arrival and on day 8 and quarantine for 14 days.

Travel restrictions, testing and quarantine requirements may change without notice. Visit COVID-19: Travel, testing, and borders for updates.

On December 15, 2021, the government issued a travel health notice to avoid non-essential travel internationally.

As of January 15, 2022, international students and work permit holders must be fully vaccinated to travel to Canada. Exceptions will include international students under the age of 18 studying at approved institutions such as UBC. Visit the backgrounder  and November 19 news release and November 30 news release for more information.

Last updated Thursday, January 6


If you’re an international student planning to come to UBC, we are here to help.

There are important steps to take before you plan your trip. It’s important for you to review the guide and understand the process and requirements before you travel.

start the guide

Step 1. Check if you’re eligible to enter Canada

Check if you can travel before making travel arrangements. Not all students can travel to Canada.

  • Understand what travel documents are required
  • Get advice on whether you should travel
  • Learn how the travel restrictions may impact you
  • Consider when to travel

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Step 2. Before you travel to Canada

Before you travel to Canada, you must make sure you prepare the right documents and have a quarantine plan for when you arrive.

  • Gather documents supporting essential travel (proof of enrolment)
  • Get a COVID-19 molecular test within 72 hours before your flight’s scheduled departure time or within 72 hours before arrival by land.
  • Get a new medical exam, if required
  • Confirm your health insurance coverage

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Step 3. Prepare your quarantine (self-isolation) plan

You must self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival and submit a self-isolation plan. If you are fully vaccinated, you still need to prepare for a 14-day quarantine plan in case you do not meet the requirements to be exempt from quarantine.

  • Read and follow provincial and federal guidelines for quarantine.
  • Consider what you need for necessary support during your quarantine.
  • Learn about criteria and exemptions for eligible fully vaccinated travellers.
  • Register for your on-arrival COVID-19 test at the airport or land border before travelling.
  • Submit your personal details and quarantine plan through the ArriveCAN app (mandatory).
  • Learn about UBC’s self-isolation packages and resources.

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Step 4. While you travel to Canada

Make sure you bring the right documents, know what to expect at the airport or border and follow arrival steps.

  • See documentation to bring.
  • Learn what to pack.
  • Know what to expect at the airport or border.
  • Get a COVID-19 molecular test on arrival (if you are fully vaccinated you may be randomly selected to do so).
  • Collect your day 8 COVID-19 test kit if you are not fully vaccinated.

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Step 5. After arriving in Canada

There are a few things you need to do as soon as you arrive in Canada.

  • Follow your quarantine plan for the remainder of the 14 days, if applicable
  • Complete the take-home COVID-19 test kit during quarantine as instructed, if applicable
  • Apply for MSP and check that you have iMED
  • Complete the after arrival checklist
  • See options if you need financial support
  • Learn about life in Canada

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