NU Canadian Campuses

Northeastern University is committed to sharing with our students the most up-to-date information possible regarding study permits and ongoing travel restrictions.   Please know that we will work diligently to provide comprehensive advice, process all requests, and advocate for the needs of our students. Student safety is our top priority.  

Northeastern University’s Vancouver and Toronto campuses submitted comprehensive COVID-19 readiness plans, which have been approved by the relevant provincial authorities. As such, both Northeastern University Canadian campuses have been added to the DLI list of institutions with approved COVID-19 readiness plans. 

Fall 2021 

Travel Ready

Please note that the Government of Canada has announced that starting July 5, 2021, there will be an easing of some quarantine requirements for essential travellers who meet requirements regarding being full vaccinated. Please see this link for more information. 

For students who have been issued a visa, or electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), and are planning on travelling as soon as possible, please note that IRCC has indicated students should not travel earlier than four weeks prior to the start of their classes. Some airlines might have stricter or different requirements for boarding. Please make sure you consult with your airline before booking your air ticket. 

To receive instructions on preparing a quarantine plan and to request a supporting travel letter from Northeastern, please email a copy of your travel document to: [email protected]. We recommend you do not book travel until you have sent your visa or travel document to us. Please make sure that your flight ticket is changeable.  

We will send you instructions on preparing to become ‘travel ready’, including how to complete your quarantine plan, information on our pre-arranged hotel, airport transportation service, and pre-travel testing requirements. Please return the forms, signed, along with proof of your flight booking. We will verify everything is completed and submitted as required and issue a travel letter from OGS to facilitate your travel, 3-5 days prior to your departure date.  

Please contact the Arrivals team before booking any flights, so you can receive the most up to date information. Please allow a minimum of 10 business days for the team to review your documents.  

Current Quarantine Instructions: 

  • Prior to departure to Canada, air travelers are required to reserve a three-night stay in a government-authorized hotel. This three-night stay is included in the mandatory 14-day quarantine.  
  • Air travelers can choose from a number of government-authorized hotels near each of the four international airports accepting international flights (Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal).    
  • It is up to the traveler to choose a government-authorized hotel and book in advance of departure. The price will include costs associated with the room, food, cleaning, infection prevention and control measures, and security as well as transportation.  
  • Travelers will need to book a hotel for their three-night stay in the city in which they first arrive in Canada. We recommend you select a travel plan that arrives in Canada at your final destination city, with no inside Canada transfer flights. 

Bookings for the mandatory 3-night hotel stopover are managed by American Express Global Business Travel and available by phone only. To book your hotel stopover, call 1-800-294-8253  


Please refer to the Northeastern University Toronto Campus Pre-Arrival Checklist Winter 2021.  


Please refer to the Northeastern University Vancouver Campus Pre-Arrival Checklist Spring 2021.  

Students waiting for approval

For students who do not receive an approval of their study permit in time to join us during the Fall 2021 Semester on ground in Toronto or VancouverIRCC has indicated that online studies will be permitted for the Fall 2021 term for students who have a study permit application in process. You cannot study online unless you have submitted a complete study permit application. Please see this link for more details: 

Request Remote Learner Status

If you are going to be studying online for Fall 2021, you must submit a Remote Learning Request online no later than 30 days prior to the start of your classes. If your situation changes prior to the start of classes, you may request to move back to on-ground classes. Please see this link for information on this process.   

Please see the FAQ for Fall 2021 below. We have outlined the options and we hope this will help you make an informed decision about your enrollment at Northeastern University. 

FAQ: Study Permit Processing

Q:  I applied by the May 15th deadline, and I am still waiting on my study permit approval.  When can I expect that approval? 

IRCC has committed to processing study permit applicationsreceivedby May 15 in time for fall classes. If you submitted your application after this date, you may not receive a decision on your application until later in the Fall 2021 semester. If you submitted your study permit application very late, please see the FAQ below regarding deferring your start date. 

Q:  Are permits still being processed in a two-stage approval process? 

At this time, IRCC has not indicated that this process will be in effect for the Fall 2021 term. We will monitor this situation and advise if there is an update. 

Q:  If I have a study permit approval, will my online studies from home count toward my PGWP eligible time?

Yes, IRCC has issued a recent accommodation stating that courses taken outside of the country prior to December 31, 2021 can count toward PGWP.  


FAQ: Quarantine Requirements

Q:  Do I need to do a Covid test prior to travelling? 

Yes, as of January 6, 2021, the Canadian Government now requires all international travelers arriving in Canada to show proof of a negative Covid 19 molecular test Please click on this link for details.   

Q:  What needs to be in my quarantine plan if I am able to travel? 

Please read the instructions above for students who have a valid travel document. Please send a copy of your travel document to [email protected] for further instructions. 

FAQ: Studying

Q:  If I don’t receive my study permit approval in time for the beginning of classes in Fall 2021, what are my options?

If you don’t receive your study permit decision by the beginning of classes your options are as follows:  

1) begin studying online and join your classes in Canada when you receive your permit 

2) defer to the next intake for your program. To request a deferral please contact the Admissions department for your program. 

For CPS Toronto programs, the last date to request to defer to a future term is September 20, 2021. Please note that you must withdraw by the last withdrawal date for your program in order to be eligible for a full refund. Please note that not all programs have an intake in January 2022 so please check with the Admissions Department for your program.  

For Khoury programs, the last official date to request to defer to a future term is August 4, 2021. If you have an admission to a Khoury program and are making a deferral request after August 4, please contact Khoury Admissions.  

Q:  Will classes be online or in person for Fall2021?  

We are planning for fully on-ground classes for the fall, and we are prepared and looking forward to meeting you all. All on-ground classes will be in accordance with public health and safety measures by the relevant local and provincial health authorities. 

Northeastern is committed to making in-person classroom instruction safe for all members in our community. Through the use of our NUFlex course delivery system, we are also able to smoothly manage any changes in course delivery modality that may become necessary. Please see here for information on NUFlex: 

Q:  If I start in Fall2021 online and my study permit application is refused later, will I get any refund of my tuition? 

All refunds are issued in accordance with the policies of your College. Please see this link for more information: 

Q:  May I attend my classes in person if I enter Canada after the start of classes but before the end of the Fall semester? 

Please contact your academic advisor to discuss your options if you are in this situation. 

Q:  I am currently in Canada, can I go to my home country and complete my studies from there? 

At this time, there is no direction from IRCC regarding students returning to their home countries to complete part of their studies online. Due to a rapidly changing situation, we do not know what the travel rules will be in the future. Online studies are approved until December 31, 2021 for students who are unable to travel to Canada.  

Q:  Do I have to study in my home country, even if my study permit is approved and I have a visa/travel document?  

If you have or receive a valid travel document, and you make the necessary arrangements in line with provincial and federal guidance, you will still be able to travel to Canada. Should you have any questions about these guidelines, please contact Northeastern at [email protected]. 

Q:  I have received a study permit approval and travel visa. Do I have to come to Canada right away? I planned to travel to meet the December 31,2021 deadline for online studies, but I would prefer to come later in the fall and start on ground in January 2022.  

If you prefer to study from your home country for the Fall 2021 term, you can do so. Please let your Academic Advisor know so you can be registered in the appropriate sections for your courses and please make sure you are able to travel to Canada in time to start classes in January. If you are inside Canada, you are required to attend in-person classes. 

Q:  If I start studying online, will my PGWP eligibility be affected?

IRCC has authorized online studies to count towards the duration of the PGWP, only for studies completed up to December 31, 2021. As such, if you study online in the Fall 2021 term, you will be able to use this period of studies to qualify for your PGWP and it will be included in the calculation of the duration of the PGWP. This online exception will not be extended after December 31, 2021, so you may choose to defer if you don’t believe you will receive your study permit approval in time to join classes on ground by January 2022. 

FAQ: Travel

Q:  When should I arrive in Canada?

IRCC and CBSA advises students to arrive no earlier than four weeks prior to the beginning of your classes. Some airlines might have stricter or different requirement for boarding. Please make sure you consult with your airline before booking your air ticket. 

If you are going to arrive later than the first day of classes, please make sure to let your Academic Advisor know this. 

Q:  Do I need to show proof of vaccination to enter Canada? 

As of the date of this update, there are no vaccination requirements to enter Canada. People who are entering Canada must still follow quarantine requirements even if they are fully or partially vaccinated. These rules may change, so please keep checking back for updates, and make sure to participate in the OGS Canada pre-departure and travel webinars. Details will be posted on the Events pages of the Vancouver and Toronto websites.  

Q:  What do I need to bring with me when I travel to Canada? 

You must bring: your passport, an acceptance letter from NU, your valid study permit or your Port of Entry Introduction letter (Study permit approval letter), a complete quarantine plan, proof that you have completed a Covid 19 molecular test prior to traveling, and proof that you have enough funds to support yourself in Canada.    

You should download the ArriveCAN mobile app to expedite the time spent with the border officer.  

You should also be prepared with a quarantine plan that follows all guidelines, including the initial 3 day stay. 

You should also make sure you’ve completed an immigration medical examination if required and the results are still valid at the timing of your arrival. 

Q:  Can my family travel with me? 

If your accompanying family member has the correct IRCC document to enter Canada, they may be able to travel with you. Please see this link for more information: 

Q:  I have a study permit approval, but I am unable to travel to Canada because of a travel ban. What are my options?

You may start your studies online for Fall 2021 or you may defer to the next semester.  According to instructions from IRCC, courses taken online from home may count toward PGWP. The online study exception is only until December 31, 2021. We do not know if this date will be extended. 

Q:  Do I have to travel to Canada before the end of Fall 2021term if I have received my study permit approval? 

You should plan to travel to Canada during the Fall 2021 term and no later than the start of classes in January. We don’t know if the online study exception will be extended after December 2021. 

Make sure you do the following:

  • COMMUNICATE your plans to OGS and to your College 
  • MONITOR the Visa Application Centres (VACs) in your country for updates and information 
  • VISIT the IRCC website frequently for travel and permit processing updates 
  • MAKE A PLAN! Consider all of your options and alternatives, and choose the plan that is best for you, not necessarily what others are telling you they are doing.

We encourage you to check your emails for future announcements and the links below for news and updates. 

Visa Application Centres for your country 

IRCC for permit, travel and processing updates 

Information on quarantine requirements 

Northeastern University COVID-19 information 

If you have specific questions that are not answered in the above, or online with our FAQ, you may email [email protected]. Please note that this email is experiencing a very high volume of emails so please be patient. Make sure you include your full name and student ID in the message and please do not send to multiple recipients, as this will slow down our ability to respond to your request.