Any changes in Canadian Student visa requirements for Indian students due to COVID-19 Pandemic?
Except accepting IELTS General, There are no changes in the requirements of both the study permit categories. This means that if you are applying through SDS Category, you should fulfil the requirements of SDS including IELTS Score. If you don’t fulfil any requirement of the SDS Category, your application will be processed as a NON-SDS (General category). Moreover, online English language tests like Duolingo, IELTS indicators etc are not accepted by IRCC.
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Read more: Ielts requirement under sds
Can a student get a student visa now and Travel? What is Possible and what is not possible at the current stage?
Right now, In-general student visa holders are allowed to travel. Now Canada is opening its boundaries for those students who have a study permit or are travelling for a non-optional purpose to Canada. If you wish to travel to Canada, you must be a student at one of the DLIs they have included in their COVID Ready institute list. If your college is on the covid ready list you can travel anytime for sept students irrespective of the mode of delivery (3 weeks prior before the class start date for Jan intake students). No POE is needed if your DLI is on the list. carry your loa, quarantine package list (or ur quarantine plans), passport and visa. DLI list will be updated every 2 weeks (sometimes it may update before the 2 week time).
Your visa will be in a deactivated state if your college is not on the covid ready list (those who have visas). All the student visa applications will be on hold if the said DLI is not yet on the covid ready list. only those application who’s DLI’s are on the list will be prioritised and also advances to 2nd stage.
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Please read our blog for the covid ready Canadian colleges list and all other useful details.
As of 1st November 2020, Majority of VACs (VFS India for Canada) are closed. VFS will open stage-wise. Right now Delhi VFS is open for accepting passports. There is no date on VFS yet discussions are going on, Probably may open on any date in the month of November 2020. Therefore Stamping of Visa on Passport and Biometric collection is not possible yet. When VFSs will open then they will prioritise who has to give biometrics first. No PPR’s will be issued without biometrics. Passport requests will be sent to students who’s DLI is on the covid ready list.
Please share Eligibility for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program? Will I get a Post-Graduation Work Permit if I study online from India?
You will still be eligible for a post-graduation work permit, even though you are not able to/allowed to travel to Canada at this time due to travel limitations and
- you have a study permit
- you have been approved for a study permit
- you applied for a study permit before beginning your studies in spring, summer or fall 2020 semesters, or
- you will apply for a study permit before beginning your study program in the January 2021 semester
- you will graduate from a DLI with PGWPP-eligible program
If you’re in this situation, you can start your classes even when you are not in Canada and
- complete your program fully online if (1) your program is between 8 and 12 months in length, and (2) you started your studies between May and September 2020 – If you have completed 1 full year online you are still eligible for PGWP (for 1-year programs)
- complete up to half of your program online (until April 30, 2021) if you complete the other 50% of your program in Canada
- complete half of your studies online (until April 30, 2021) if (1) you’ll graduate from two separate eligible study programs within 2 years of each other (2) One of the programs started between May and September 2020 (3) each program is at least 8 months long, and (4) you complete at least half of the combined length of the programs in Canada
If you apply for your study permit prior to beginning your program, any time spent studying online from outside Canada since spring 2020 now counts toward the length of a post-graduation work permit. (Before, only the time spent studying online after you were approved for a study permit counted.)
You won’t have time reduced from the duration of your post-graduation work permit for studies you finished outside Canada (online) until April 30, 2021.
What are the Pros and Cons of Study online? Should I opt for online study OR Should I wait?
To be honest, this depends on many factors including your choice and how much time it takes to come to a better situation in India and Canada from COVID-19 perspective.
The situation in Canada is much better now but still, the situation in India is not good as the number of Corona positive cases are still coming up. The Canadian government may wait until risk due to COVID Pandemic decrease due to flattening of the curve in India OR Vaccination. This is very much uncertain.
Scenario 1: If you are more interested in attending In-person classes in Canada and want some certainty then you should just get the offer letters and then wait for the improvement of the Pandemic situation. However, having an offer letter early may be useful as there will be a rush once the situation is improving and it will be extremely difficult to get seats/places in popular institutes. If the Pandemic situation doesn’t improve, you may defer the offer letter without any hassle or financial loss.
Scenario 2: If you don’t want to waste your time and don’t have a problem in online education then you should start your process as early as possible because there are more chances of getting admission into your dream college/university in the field/area of your choice. For example, before Pandemic, seats/places in popular institutes in Toronto and Vancouver got filled almost 6-month in advance. However, due to pandemic, seats/places are available in these popular institutes. In this scenario, you should process for fees payment and student visa application earliest to avoid the rush later.
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