Student Tips: Before Arrival

These tips provided by UTSAV, UBC Indian Student Community

1. Apply for Visa
2. Book Flight tickets
3. Pack your bags

Student Visa

Obtaining a Student Visa for your studies in Canada is a straightforward process, first and foremost visit the website This website provides very clear, comprehensive information about obtaining a student authorization in Canada.
Make sure you visit their office once before you start the Visa Application Process, as they will help you out by answering, clarifying and resolving all your Visa related queries. They will also help you out by getting all the preliminary forms and documents needed to start the process, though every form they provide are already available online in the website mentioned above.

After this visit, you will surely develop a fair amount of idea regarding the checklist of documents needed for your application and understand the whole process of obtaining a Canadian Student Visa. Once this is done, the next big task would be to undergo the ‘Pre-Application Medical Examination’ before you submit your application for Study Permit.

Students applying to Canadian Universities may have their medical examination before submitting their Study Permit application by visiting one of the Designated Medical Practitioners (DMP) in India. It is not mandatory to complete a medical examination prior to submission of your application. However, doing so may result in faster processing. The Medical Examination is nothing to get tensed about, it is very much like your regular body check-up which includes your blood test, urine test, respiratory checks etc. The DMP will provide you with one copy of your medical examination form which must be submitted together with your Study Permit application. You should submit your application only after one week after your medical examination is completed.

The website has easily accessible and understandable forms that you can download, fill in online and print. The various forms required are:
Student Form
Family Information Form
Student Questionnaire Form
Study Permit Checklist
An important checklist is available which will help you out in arranging and developing a folder consisting of academic, financial and government administration related documents. This checklist clearly defines all requirements. For more information regarding photographs, acceptance letter, acceptable educational loan documents, other required documents, IELTS results, etc., log on to

It is strongly recommended that you submit your application by 01 December for January entry and by 01 August for September entry.
For more information log on to

Work Permit

A work permit is not required for working part-time on campus. For off-campus work permit, refer to

What to Pack

To get some idea about weather in Vancouver please read
The following items are recommended: Thermal inner-wear, gloves, head caps, mufflers, warm jackets with hoodies which are water proof, good quality water proof shoes. However note that these are not required initially(in September). It is recommended to buy these things in Vancouver (Walmart, Metro town, Mec).

Food, Utensils and Utilities

Vancouver is very good for obtaining Indian cooking items. Get a basic starter set since most of the things are available here. This should include some plates, spoons, basic cooking utensils, pressure cooker, drinking vessels. All branded Indian Masalas, pickles and snacks are available here.
Indian stores are located around Main and Fraser( and 49th avenue). For regular groceries you can go to one of the many stores in and around Vancouver, some of which are Safeway, Save on Food stores or Young Brothers(the cheaper option).
You can bring your own medicines but don’t forget to get the prescription from a doctor if you need refills. Glasses and Contact Lenses. Optics very expensive here. Dont forget basic every day utilities (bed sheets, Towels, Toiletries etc).

Stationary items, Documents and Books

Stationary items and books are much more expensive here. Bring a few things to start off with. Avoid bringing files and punch, as the filing system is different here, with a three-hole punch. The library is quite well equipped.
Get all necessary certificates and documents like driving license, transcripts and degree certificates. Bring them safely and securely, along with their photocopies as you will need them. REMEMBER TO PACK these documents in your carry on luggage. Bring some passport size photographs as well. A good carrying bag is highly advisable.

Dollar stores are cheap avenues for buying most of the things mentioned above.