Passports, Visas and Travel Advisories

Get Ready for Travel: Passports, Visas and Travel Advisories

When you go abroad, certain countries require you to apply for and obtain immigration and travel documents to travel, study or work in that specific country. 

Students in Education Abroad programs are responsible for ensuring they have the appropriate travel and immigration documents including passports, study permits and visas.

All Education Abroad participants will be required to show proof of a passport that is valid for least six (6) months after the scheduled to return date to Canada.  Each participant must submit a copy of the photo page, with passport number, expiry date and citizenship.

Apply for and Renewing Canadian Passports

Need to apply for a Canadian passport or to renew if yours is scheduled to expire? It can take several weeks or even months to complete this process.  Apply as early as possible and consider that you may need to send your passport away in order to apply for a visa. Ensure you allow sufficient time to complete these processes.

Find the nearest passport office that can process your application.

Tip: Do not send or courier your application by mail unless advised to do so.  It is recommended to go in person as the receiving agents can help verify your application and supporting documents, and send the documents on your behalf.

International Students in Canada

VIU International Students going abroad on VIU Education Abroad must ensure that their immigration documents in Canada remain in good standing for the duration of their time outside of Canada.

Immigration documents may include Temporary Resident Visas and/or Study Permits, which should both be current and not scheduled to expire while abroad.  For more information or further immigration assistance, connect with the VIU International Immigration Advisor ( and VIU Immigration resources.

Each country has specific entry requirements. The travel and immigration documents you need to obtain will depend on your citizenship, purpose for entering the country and individual circumstances.  Because it is different for each student going abroad, it is the student's responsibility to research, apply for, and obtain the appropriate documents for themselves.  

Types of Visas or Immigration Documents

  • Entry Visa to enter the country
  • Permit or Visa to study or work in the country
  • Temporary Resident Permit or registration after arrival in the host country
  • Work permit (those studying in short-term or semester abroad programs will likely not be permitted to work while in the host country
  • Visa Waivers (i.e. ETIAS for the EU and Schengen Area)

Check with the nearest embassy or consular office of the host country to determine what you will need. Not all countries require a permit or visa for students from abroad.  If you intend to leave the country and return, you may need a multiple entry visa.  Expect there to be a fee associated with your application.  These fees are not included in the Education Abroad program fees.

Some Consulates and Embassies require that you travel in person to apply and provide biometrics (fingerprints, photo). This is of particular concern for those who do not have Canadian Citizenship (international students take note).  The costs associated with traveling and travel arrangements are the responsibility of the student.

Tip: Start this process early, as it can take several weeks or several months to complete, depending on the host country requirements.  You may need to schedule an appointment to visit the Embassy or Consular office in-person.

The Travel Advice and Advisories are the Government of Canada’s official source of destination-specific travel information. They give you important advice to help you to make informed decisions and to travel safely while you are abroad, including information related to entry and exit requirements. Find location specific information on the following:

  • local safety and security conditions and areas to avoid
  • entry and exit requirements
  • local laws and culture
  • possible health hazards and health restrictions
  • natural hazards and climate
  • where to find help while you are travelling abroad

Government of Canada Travel Advisories

Note: No matter where you plan to travel, make sure you check the Travel Advice and Advisories page for your destination twice: once when you are planning your trip, and again shortly before you leave. Safety and security conditions may change between the date you book your travel and your departure date.

*The above information is an excerpt taken directly from the Government of Canada website.