Canadian Student Study Permit

After you receive your letter of admission to Fairleigh Dickinson University, you should begin the process of applying for your Student Permit (link to study permit below). We recommend you apply early! In some cases, processing of study permits can take up to six months. Contact your closest Canadian Embassy or Consulate for more information about processing times, and possible deadlines for study abroad applications.

Please remember to request that your Study Permit be granted for the entire length of your degree program. Requesting an extension of your Permit in Canada does require a processing fee.

Applying for a Canadian Student Study Permit

Most foreign students will need a Study Permit to study in Canada. Some countries will also require students to have a Temporary Residents Visa (TRV). In some situations, there are exceptions whereby students do not need a study permit. You can find these exceptions here:

Study Permit

A study permit is an official document issued by the Canadian government which gives permission to study in Canada.

Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)

A TRV is a sticker that is placed in your passport if you are a citizen of a country that requires a visa to visit Canada. This can either be for a single entry, or multiple entries. A valid TRV must be presented with your study permit to enter Canada. For information on which countries require a TRV, go to Citizenship and Immigration – TRV.

Benefits of Having a Study Permit

You should apply for a Study Permit before you come to Canada if you think you may wish to continue your studies in another program after you complete the short-term course or program.

If you do not have a valid Study Permit and wish to continue your studies, you will have to leave Canada in order to apply for one.

Applying for a Study Permit

The time required to process an application to study in Canada may vary at different visa offices. See Citizenship and Immigration Canada – Visa Offices to determine the Canadian embassy, high commission, or consulate responsible for the country in which you are living and you may inquire at that office regarding the timing. If you are from the U.S., Greenland, or St. Pierre and Miquelon, you can apply at a Canadian port of entry at the same time you are entering Canada; see Citizenship and Immigration Canada – Apply for a Study Permit.

Where do you apply?

You must submit your application for processing to the Canadian visa office responsible for your country. See Citizenship and Immigration Canada – Visa Offices to find the Canadian embassy, high commission or consulate responsible for the country in which you are living. If you are from the U.S., Greenland, or St. Pierre and Miquelon, you can apply at a Canadian port of entry.


Documents Needed to Apply for a Study Permit

The following general documents will be required. Additional documents may be required depending on the visa office.
  • This letter is signed by an officer at FDU Vancouver Campus and proves that you’ve been accepted to the University. You may submit an original or a copy of your acceptance letter.


  • A valid passport or travel document that guarantees re-entry to the country that issued it. It is recommended that you renew your passport in your home country if it is expiring within one year of arriving in Canada.


  • Canada Immigration requires students from certain countries to pass a medical exam and criminal history check, if applicable. Refer to Citizenship and Immigration – Medical Exams.


  • You must prove that you can support yourself and the family members who accompany you while you are in Canada. You can prove that you have sufficient funds to support yourself in Canada by showing some of the following:

    • Proof of a Canadian bank account in your name if money has been transferred to Canada
    • Proof of a student/education loan from a financial institution
    • Your bank statements for the past four months
    • A bank draft in convertible currency
    • Proof of payment of tuition and accommodation fees
    • A letter from the person or institution providing you with money
    • Proof of funding paid from within Canada if you have a scholarship or are in a Canadian-funded educational program

    Visit for detailed information about your proof of funds to apply for a study permit.


How Much Does it Cost for a Study Permit?

The current processing fee is $155 per person and is paid when you submit an application for a study permit. Please note that this fee is not refundable.

What Happens Next?

Canada Citizenship and Immigration will review your application and, if you are approved, will issue you a letter authorizing your study permit. You will need to carry this letter with you along with your passport and present it to the immigration officer when you arrive in Canada. You should also carry a copy of your letter of acceptance from the Vancouver Campus with you.

Remember to:

  • Check your documents carefully to make sure your name is spelled correctly, and that dates and other information are correct.
  • Carry your passport, letter from Canada Immigration authorizing your study permit, letter of acceptance, required entry documents with you when you travel to Canada. Do not pack them in your suitcase.
  • Service is offered in both French and English. If you are having difficulties understanding something, ask if an interpreter is available for your preferred language of communication.


CBSA Voluntary Compliance Portal

Reduce your wait time at Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

When new international students arrive at YVR, they can decrease the wait time for their study permit processing by completing the Voluntary Compliance Portal (VC Portal).  The VC Portal is an expedited processing online form that new international students can complete before travelling to Vancouver International Airport (YVR) to notify the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) that they are arriving at YVR. This allows Canada Border Services Agency to review and prepare their study permit before they arrive at YVR, which decreases the time international students need to spend at the airport.

If you meet the following criteria, you should use the VC Portal:

  • You have a Letter of Introduction supporting your Study Permit approval and
  • Your initial port of entry into Canada will be at YVR (not another Canadian airport) and
  • You are able to fill out the VC Portal at least 72 hours in advance of your arrival at YVR


At least 72 hours prior to your arrival to YVR, go to the VC Portal and submit your information. Please include your following information: 

The additional fields are optional; however it is recommended that you complete as many fields as you can.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the VC Portal supersede any of the Orders in Council?

No. The VC Portal has no legal standing. It is only a process that can help in making the permit issuance process more efficient.

Does the VC Portal replace the need to obtain immigration documentation? (e.g. Visa, Permit, ETA)

No. The VC Portal has no affiliation with Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Submitting information through the VC Portal does not authorize entry to enter Canada. The VC Portal cannot be used to circumvent any visa, permit, ETA, or other documentary requirements.

Who will have access to the information the students submit?

The information that is submitted at will be sent directly to the CBSA at the Vancouver International Airport. No other organization will have access to this information.

What happens if the student chooses not to submit my information?

The VC Portal is purely a voluntary process. Declining to use this program will not negatively affect the student. Using this application will not excuse the student from any other process that an international traveler may be subject to when arriving in Canada. The VC Portal only serves to expedite the permit issuance process for pre-approved permits at the port of entry.

How much in advance can the student submit their information?

The student can submit information as early as they wish; there are no time constraints to this. However, the information must be received at least 72 hours prior to the student’s arrival. Should the information be submitted late, there is no guarantee that it will be received and processed.

What happens if the student submits incorrect information?

Resubmit using the correct information. The student will not need to contact YVR, CBSA, or your institution.

What happens if the student needs a work permit and a study permit?

At this time, the VC Portal is only being utilized for study permits. If a student has been pre-approved for a study permit and a work permit, the student is encouraged to complete the VC Portal with the study permit information.



Renewing Your Study Permit

If you want to extend your stay in Canada as a student, you must complete an Application to Change Conditions or Extend Your Stay in Canada. Check the expiry date on your study permit, and make sure you apply before that date. You should apply for renewal at least 30 days before your current permit expires.

If you apply for a renewal of your study permit, and the permit expires before you receive an answer, you can continue to study in Canada under the same conditions until you receive a decision.

You should apply to renew your study permit if you intend to travel outside Canada and your permit will expire while you are traveling.

You cannot extend your study permit beyond the expiry date on your passport. If your study permit has expired, and you have not applied for an extension, you must leave Canada.