Updated Nov. 2, 2020

 If you cannot find the answer to your question below, please contact our international student advisor at intadvisor@mta.ca 

For specific questions about entry into Canada, parents/students should contact the Canadian Border Services Agency directly: https://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/contact/bis-sif-eng.html

For more information from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) on entry into Canada visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/coronavirus-covid19/travel-restrictions-exemptions.html

Travel restrictions 

International students with a valid study permit or study permit approval letter are now permitted to enter Canada as long as they are registered at a designated learning institution (DLI) with an approved COVID-19 readiness plan. Mount Allison University is one of the institutions on the list of DLIs  with an approved COVID-19 readiness plan.

Further information on updates to travel exemptions can be found on the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website.

We recognize that many students are still waiting for a final decision on their study permit application. Visa offices overseas continue to face delays in processing applications and many Visa Application Centres (required for biometrics collection) have not yet reopened.  

Please note that a full study permit approval (NOT an Approval in Principle) is required for entry to Canada.

U.S. citizens and permanent residents only: please note that you are authorized to apply for a study permit upon entry to Canada. You do not require a pre-approved study permit prior to travel to Canada.  

Entry/self-isolation requirements for international students — Winter 2021 

14-day self-isolation period

Students travelling to New Brunswick from outside Canada or the Atlantic Bubble (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador) will need to have plans in place to safely self-isolate/quarantine for 14 days after arrival. 

For more information regarding self-isolation requirements, please review the following government guidelines:

Letter of Acknowledgement

Students entering Canada/New Brunswick must provide a copy of a Mount Allison Letter of Acknowledgment to Canadian/New Brunswick border officials in order to be granted permission to enter Canada and New Brunswick.
The Letter of Acknowledgement confirms that the student is required to be in New Brunswick to study, that the student’s individualized self-isolation plan has been approved by Mount Allison, and that Mount Allison has obtained all other relevant information from the student prior to their arrival.

To receive a Letter of Acknowledgment:

Approved arrival period

Mount Allison is required by provincial and federal regulations to follow detailed plans that outline how we will safely facilitate the arrival of students into Canada and New Brunswick.

This includes:

  • providing regular check-ins with students during their 14-day self-isolation
  • providing information and support to students about how they can get necessary items (like food and medications) during their self-isolation period
  • facilitating mandatory testing with New Brunswick Public Health authorities on day 10 of self-isolation (required for students entering New Brunswick through international borders)

International students travelling (or returning) to Mount Allison for Winter 2021 studies, who are self-isolating off-campus, are required to arrive between Jan. 1 and Jan. 17, 2021. Students who are self-isolating in residence must arrive on Jan. 1 or 2.  

Documentation required for travel

International students will require the following documents in order to gain permission to cross the border and enter Canada and New Brunswick:

  • Copy of the Mount Allison Letter of Acknowledgement
  • Copy of your self-isolation plan
  • Passport
  • Study permit (or study permit approval letter)
  • Confirmation of health insurance
  • Proof that you have enough money to support yourself in Canada
  • A copy of your lease is recommended for off-campus students

Living in residence — Winter 2021

Residence confirmation deadline: Nov. 30, 2020

International students who have applied for a room in one of Mount Allison's on-campus residences for Winter 2021 must confirm their plans by Monday, Nov. 30 by emailing Housing at resroom@mta.ca.

To confirm your room, you must provide proof of your study permit approval (not required for U.S. students or students currently in Canada).  Students who have paid deposits for residence who must cancel due to study permit application delays will not be penalized financially. We will refund your residence deposit if you are not able to join us on campus, if you notify us by Nov. 30.

Students who will be self-isolating in residence must arrive on Jan. 1 or 2, 2021.


I have been admitted to Mount Allison. Can I apply for my study permit now?
Yes. As soon as you are admitted to Mount A, you should apply online for an initial study permit so that you are in the queue for processing. The current travel restrictions will not prevent your study permit application from being processed.

See the latest IRCC updates on study permits and this update for international students from the Government of Canada.

What impact is the pandemic having on processing times?
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is continuing to process applications. The processing times posted on the IRCC website are estimates based on the average processing time for an application; however, they do not accurately reflect disruptions caused by COVID-19. If your application is past the published processing time, you can contact the IRCC through an online form to request an update.

Check the IRCC processing times for your application.

I need to provide biometrics. How does this impact my application?
All biometrics collection services in Canada and the U.S. are suspended until further notice, and some Visa Application Centres (VACs) outside of Canada are temporarily closed. If you haven't been able to give your biometrics due to a service disruption, IRCC is giving applicants an extension until the biometrics collection sites reopen — you do not need to request a new Biometrics Instruction Letter.

Some visa application centres (VACs) are starting to reopen, so be sure check the  VAC website closest to you  so you can book an appointment to give biometrics as soon as you're able.

Find out more on giving biometrics.

I am a new student starting in January and my courses are all online. If I am unable to travel Canada due to travel restrictions, can I start my program online from outside of Canada?
You may begin your program online from outside of Canada, even if your study permit application has not been processed yet. We are working on offering as many courses as possible in an alternative delivery format. Please see the Registrar's Office webpage for a list of all courses without prerequisites (open to first year students) and the corresponding delivery method. If you need assistance with your course selection, please contact one of Mount Allison's academic advisors at advisor@mta.ca

As outlined on the IRCC website: "If you have a study permit, or have been approved for a study permit for a program starting in the spring, summer, or fall, but you can't travel to Canada at this time due to travel restrictions, you're also still eligible for the PGWP." (updated June 11, 2020)

Due to COVID-19, there are frequent changes in Canada's immigration policies, which may have different implications for new and current international students. It is important that you fully understand the COVID-19 Updates from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and how the new rules are affecting you and your studies in Canada. Contact our international student advisor, Christa Maston, for personal assistance with your immigration situation: intadvisor@mta.ca