yellow background, glasses, open notebook that says "to do" on open laptop, international students list

A Checklist for International Students Studying in Canada


International students who plan to attend college or university in Canada need to consider what it is that they need to bring with them.  Home is quite a distance away, and forgetting something important can mean a long wait until they can acquire it.  In fact, it can even delay the beginning of their education.

Firstly, official documentation and paperwork are the most important things on this list. Secondly, money in the form of cold, hard cash, plastic (debit and credit cards), or electronic funds is essential.  However, here is an itemized list of necessary items for international students:


  1. Passport/Visa. Verify that it is up to date.
  2. Plane ticket.
  3. Money in the form of cash or traveler’s checks. This is for small expenditures and for those locations that do not accept credit or debit cards.
  4. Credit or debit cards. Verify that the expiration date has not passed.
  5. Pin and account numbers. Keep a list of the account and the pin numbers in a secure location.  This is especially helpful if you have multiple accounts or if the cards become lost or stolen.
  6. National and International Driver’s licenses. Even if you do not plan to drive, these are excellent forms of identification.
  7. Additional photo identification. Some universities require two forms of photo identification.
  8. Academic documentation that you received from the school that you will be attending.
  9. Academic documentation from the schools that you have already attended.
  10. Medical information. This includes prescription information and medical conditions that you have, as well as immunization and vaccination information.
  11. List of contact information. Include key contacts such as parents and family back home, as well as any family who live in Canada.
  12. Eyewear. Contact lenses and eyeglasses.
  13. Language dictionary or language phrasebook, especially if you are still learning English.
  14. Marriage license, if you are bringing a spouse.
  15. Current prescriptions. Follow the guidelines for the transport of this item.

Additionally, other things that you might consider bringing with you include photocopies of important documents, clothing, and supplies.  Bring only that which you can easily transport.  Lastly, bring additional money to purchase most of your supplies at your new location.

Furthermore, if you are looking for more information, check out Leaving High School Behind: Tips for Transitioning to Post-Secondary.