How Long Does it Take to Get a Canadian Student Visa?

If you are an international student and planning to study in Canada, you’ll have to go through the Canadian student visa process. The Canadian student visa is known as the Study Permit, which is a document that allows you to come to Canada to study at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI). In this guide, we’ll cover the details of the Canadian student visa process and how long it takes to obtain the visa.

Key Takeaways

  • The Canadian student visa is known as the Study Permit, which allows you to study at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI).
  • The average processing time for the Canadian student visa is around seven weeks.
  • The processing time may vary depending on your country of origin and the volume of applications, among other factors.
  • You need to provide certain documentation, such as a letter of acceptance from a DLI, proof of funds, and a police certificate.
  • You can speed up the visa process by preparing your documentation early and applying online.

Canadian Student Visa Application Process

The application process for the Canadian student visa involves several steps that you need to follow. Here’s a breakdown of the process:

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Step 1: Get a Letter of Acceptance from a DLI

The first step to apply for a Canadian student visa is to gain admission to a Designated Learning Institution (DLI). Once you receive a letter of acceptance from a DLI, you are eligible to apply for the Study Permit.

Step 2: Gather Required Documentation

After receiving the letter of acceptance from a DLI, you need to gather a set of required documents to apply for the Study Permit. You will need to provide proof of funds, a police certificate, and the results of a medical exam (if applicable). You must also meet the Canadian immigration requirements and provide biometric information.

Step 3: Apply for the Study Permit

Once you have the letter of acceptance and all of the required documentation, you can apply for the Study Permit. You can apply online or in-person at the nearest Canadian Visa Application Centre (VAC) in your country of residence. Your Study Permit application will then be reviewed by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Step 4: Wait for the Study Permit to be Issued

After your application is submitted, the processing time begins. According to the current IRCC guidelines, the average processing time for the Study Permit is approximately seven weeks. However, processing times can vary depending on various factors such as the number of applications received by the IRCC, the complexity of the application, and your country of origin.

Factors That Affect the Duration of Canadian Student Visa

The duration of getting a Canadian student visa may depend on several factors such as:

  • Your country of origin: The processing times may vary depending on the country you are applying from.
  • Time of the year: The processing times may increase during peak seasons, such as the summer months when many students apply.
  • Type of program: The processing times may vary depending on the duration of the program you are applying for.
  • Completeness of Application: An incomplete application might increase the duration of the processing time.
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Tips to Speed up the Process

Here are some tips that could help you to speed up the visa process:

  • Apply online and provide all of the required documentation. A well-documented application will help to speed up the process.
  • Apply as soon as you receive the letter of acceptance from your DLI.
  • Confirm the status of your application frequently to avoid any delays caused by missing information or documentation.

Common Issues and Concerns

Here are some common questions and concerns you may have about the Canadian student visa process:

Why was my Study Permit application rejected?

Your application might be rejected if you fail to meet the eligibility criteria, provide false information, or don’t provide the necessary documentation.

What should I do if my visa application takes longer than expected?

If your application is taking longer than expected, you can use the IRCC’s tool to check your application status or contact your nearest Canadian Visa Application Centre (VAC) for further information.

Can I travel to Canada without a Study Permit?

You cannot study in Canada without a Study Permit. If you come to Canada without a valid Study Permit, you may be asked to leave the country.


The Canadian student visa application process may seem lengthy and complicated, but it is essential for all international students who want to study in Canada. Make sure to provide all the necessary documentation on time and apply as soon as you receive the letter of acceptance from a DLI to avoid any delays. With proper preparation and timing, you can make the visa application process a smooth and hassle-free experience.

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About the Author

Clifford Thompson

Clifford is a 33-year-old Asian-American travel blogger based in Seattle, Washington. He has a degree in computer science and has traveled to over 30 countries across six continents. Clifford is experienced in navigating the visa and passport application process and shares his knowledge and insights on the blog. His articles are informative and engaging, providing readers with practical advice and recommendations for international travel.

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