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Restrictions and Information Related to COVID-19 for International Students and Trainees

If you are currently outside of Canada and beginning your studies or research activities at INRS soon, this page is for you.

Entry restrictions in Canada

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Only fully vaccinated foreign nationals can enter Canada. See also the Obligations for travellers section.

Short-term internships or studies

Fully vaccinated individuals may come to Canada for an internship or to study for 6 months or less. People in this situation can consult the IRCC website for applicable requirements for students.

Fully vaccinated individuals may also come for a research internship. It might be possible to come without a work permit for a short period of time (less than 120 days), but one must take into account the applicable requirements for workers

Obligations for travellers

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Some measures apply for travellers entering Canada according to their situation. You must check the requirements before you travel.

Health status at time of flight and specific restrictions

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Various measures apply to travellers with symptoms related to COVID-19 who come to Canada, or for those who have been granted an exemption to enter Canada without being vaccinated.

Proof of vaccination

Approved vaccines are listed here. Proof of vaccination must be submitted in ArriveCAN within 72 hours prior to boarding.

Immediate family members

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If a member of your immediate family (common-law partner, spouse, children) wants to come with you or join you later, get sure he/she is fully vaccinated.

Note that children under 18 years of age do not need to be fully vaccinated to enter Canada.

In case of illness

It should be considered that students and trainees may be infected with the virus.

Health insurance

Students from some countries are covered by the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ). The normal waiting period (in French) does not apply to tests and care related to COVID-19, which are free as of Day 1.


Those who do not benefit from RAMQ have Desjardins’ health and hospitalization insurance for international students (Desjardins insurance) as soon as they register. An individual who develops symptoms of COVID-19 is then covered for testing and care. For a start in the fall semester, insurance coverage begins on August 15. For a start in the winter semester, it starts on December 15. If you arrive earlier, you must purchase a private health and hospitalization insurance for the days leading up the dates.

However, with Desjardins insurance, if COVID-19 is contracted before arriving in the country and before coverage begins, it will be interpreted as a pre-existing condition. In this case, coverage will be limited to $10,000, which is not much in the event of hospitalization. Therefore, the student is advised to take, upon arrival, a picture of his/her study permit and send it to, then to finalize registration in order to be insured quickly.

Postdoctoral fellows

All of them are required to take out private health and hospitalization insurance. Those who will benefit from the RAMQ must also have private health insurance for the first three months.

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Vaccination in Quebec

Vaccination campaign

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The Quebec government offers the vaccine free of charge to all the residents from the province of Quebec, including foreign students and other temporary residents. If you have not yet been vaccinated, you can make an appointment on Clic Santé. People who have been partially vaccinated outside of Quebec can have their first dose registered.

If you have any question about the effectiveness and security of the vaccines, do not hesitate to consult the Government of Canada website or search for COVID-19 section on the Rumour Detector website (in French only), a joint initiative of the Agence Science-Presse and the Fonds de recherche du Québec.

Registering a vaccine received outside of Quebec

The Quebec government recognizes vaccines received outside of Quebec. This recognition is necessary in order to obtain the vaccination passport and to receive another dose to complete your vaccination status. To find out how to proceed, consult the Quebec government’s web page.

Last update: July 11, 2022

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The information preceded by the icon has been modified as of the date of the last update of the guide. It is your responsibility to check for updates, especially regarding travel restrictions.

Questions? Please contact the Student Life Services.