Coming to Canada during COVID-19


COVID-19 testing required for people flying into Canada

Starting January 7, 2021, air travellers 5 years of age or older will be required to present a negative COVID-19 test result to the airline prior to boarding international flights bound for Canada. See the news release for air travellers.


Stay up-to-date on province-wide restrictions (i.e. face masks, social gatherings, travel, etc.) that aim to significantly reduce the transmission of COVID-19. Information is available in multiple languages.


Starting November 21, 2020, all new and current students travelling to Canada must comply with the Government of Canada's strict COVID-19 pre-travel and post-arrival requirements. Read below or visit the Government of Canada COVID-19 website for full details.


Effective October 20, 2020, Designated Learning Institution's (DLI) with COVID-19 readiness plans approved by their province are now able to reopen to international students who are currently outside Canada. UFV has a COVID-19 readiness plan approved by the Province of British Columbia. 

Whether you are a new or a returning student, there are several very important pieces of information that you need to know and consider before you confirm your travel plans. The information below includes:

  • Travel eligibility
  • Submitting a quarantine plan to the government
  • Submitting your travel/quarantine details to UFV
  • What to expect at the airport & documentation checklist
  • Information on self-isolation (Quarantine Handbook)

Eligibility to travel to Canada

Students who are currently outside of Canada are eligible to travel if:

  • they are attending a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) with an approved COVID-19 readiness plan (UFV is on this approved list); 
  • have been approved for - or currently hold - a valid study permit;
  • their reason for traveling is considered essential* (studying is considered essential).

* Your travel to Canada will be considered non-essential if:

  •  your study program has been cancelled or suspended;
  •  you are entering Canada for any reason other than to study.

For more information, visit the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website

Before you travel to Canada: 

‌1. Air travellers will be REQUIRED to submit their information electronically through the ArriveCAN app before they board their flight, even if they do not show symptoms of COVID-19.

The information collected includes:

  • Travel and contact information
  • Quarantine plan (where you will be staying, how you will get groceries and medication without physically going to the store, whether there will be vulnerable people where you are staying, and transportation from an international airport directly to your quarantine location).
  • COVID-19 symptom self-assessment
  • Hint: when the app asks: "If your travel is EXEMPT?" Choose 'NO'

The ArriveCAN app is available for download on Google Play for Android or through the App Store for iOS. 


2. SUBMIT your Travel and Quarantine details to UFV.

The Government of Canada requires post-secondary institutions to closely monitor all students throughout quarantine. UFV International staff will contact you upon arrival and throughout your quarantine.


Reduce Wait-times at Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

Incoming students can now voluntarily submit information prior to travel to the Voluntary Compliance Portal (VC Portal) as part of a pilot project between Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the YVR Airport Authority.

To participate in this optional service, students must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Have a Letter of Introduction indicating study permit approval;
  • Vancouver International Airport (YVR) must be the first point of entry into Canada;
  • Submission of information using the online form at least 72 hours before arrival at YVR.

*Note that this process does not exempt students from the normal assessment of admissibility to Canada by Border Services Officers, and does not replace the usual procedure for seeking entry to Canada.


At the departure airport:

Before boarding your flight to Canada, you must show your ArriveCAN receipt and pass a health check. If you show symptoms of COVID-19, you will not be allowed to board your flight. You may be asked to show a Travel Support letter. UFV International will automatically provide a Travel Support letter to students who complete the Travel & Quarantine Details form for UFV.

Travellers who do not submit the required information digitally before boarding their flight could be subject to enforcement action, which can range from verbal warnings to $1,000 fine.


At the Canadian Immigration Checkpoint, a border services officer will determine if you can enter the country. You must again present your ArriveCan Receipt to the Canadian Border Services Agent. 

Document checklist for Canadian customs:

You will need to bring the following documents with you for Canadian customs:

  • Valid passport
  • Study permit, OR
  • Port of entry letter of introduction (study permit approval)
  • A copy of your official letter of acceptance from the University of the Fraser Valley
  • Confirmation of enrollment
  • Finanical guarantee 
  • ArriveCan receipt

After you arrive in Canada

When you have cleared Immigration you can collect your luggage and travel to your quarantine location as specified in your approved plan.

Remember, you should travel directly to your place of quarantine without any stops along the way.

During your 14-day quarantine, travellers will be required to:

  • submit information during their 14-day quarantine;
  • 48 hour post-arrival check-in via ArriveCAN app or call 1-833-641-0343
  • Daily COVID-19 symptom self-assessment check via ArriveCAN app or call 1-833-641-0343


Travellers who do not use ArriveCAN to submit their information before entering Canada will not be able to revert to using ArriveCAN after arrival!

During your quarantine, you should monitor yourself for symptoms of COVID-19. If you have any symptoms, use the BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool created by the BC Ministry of Health to see if you need further testing for COVID-19.

Travellers who do not submit the mandatory information required after they have crossed the border will be considered a high priority for follow-up by law enforcement. Be aware of the penalties for not following your quarantine plan once you are in Canada.

Still have Questions about Travelling to Canada?


Dates: NOV 26, DEC 3, 10, 17

Time: 9 -10am PST

Join on ZOOM 

Quarantine Handbook

The Quarantine Handbook is an all-encompassing guide that contains information and tips on everything you need to know about preparing for - and during - your 14-day mandatory quarantine. Information includes accessing meals, medication, accommodation, transportation, what to do if you experience symptoms, and much more. UFV International staff is here to support you before, during, and after your quarantine. 

Supporting you through Quarantine & beyond

Student services are open

During COVID-19, all student services at UFV are operating remotely — either online or via the telephone. To learn more about how to access student services, see the status of services table.

In addition, UFV continues to offer engagement programs that allow students to connect virtually with each other!

Programs to get you connected and supported 

UFV COVID-19 Support Group, is a facebook group for all international students who are new to UFV to find support during their first semester at UFV.

UFV COVID-19 Support Group

The UFV COVID-19 Support Group is a Facebook group that is designed to be an online space where all UFV International students can build connections with other students as well as the Global Engagement Team (UFV International staff members) both during and after your 14 day quarantine/self-isolation period.

Join the UFV COVID-19 Support Group



ufv reach


This virtual wellness initiative is a way for you to connect to the UFV Student Community from the comfort of your home. REACH stands for Recreation, Engagement, Awareness, Connection, and Health! The group hopes to explore wellness through a holistic lens that touches on all the parts of REACH.




CLIMB (International Student Orientation)

We are pleased to welcome students from more than 75 countries! We want you to start your #FarFromOrdinary journey off right, by attending CLIMB - your International Student Orientation designed just for you! Learn the essentials of being a UFV student, and get the chance to meet our team as well as your fellow peers.


Kerstin Stausberg

UFV is awesome! It provides small classrooms for better student and prof interaction. You can get involved in clubs and associations. And if you have any problems, there are always helpful staff members who will support you.

  • – Kerstin Stausberg
  •    UFV student
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