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US Citizens and US Permanent Residents

Important Notice: Flagpoling at Canada/US border
US Citizens and US Permanent Residents who are currently in Canada may apply for their study permit by travelling to a US/Canada land border (“flapoling”). Students who choose to flagpole must do so during the flagpoling hours and respect any border measures in place at the time.

After you have received your new CAQ, you can apply for your study permit at a Port of Entry/POE (land border or airport) or online.

If you are inside of Canada and your study permit is about to expire, it is important that you do one of the following before your study permit expires:

  • Apply online to extend your stay in Canada as a student (see our Study Permit Renewal Guide); OR
  • Travel to a U.S./Canada land border to apply for a new study permit by exiting Canada and then immediately re-entering Canada (also known as "flagpoling"). You must do this during specific flagpoling hours. The Lacolle-Champlain land border (St-Bernard-de-Lacolle) is the closest US-Canada land border to Montreal.

You cannot drive to the airport to request a new study permit.

If you are outside of Canada and are returning via land or plane, you can apply for a new study permit at a Port of Entry (land border or airport).

If your study permit is expiring and the total duration of your program is more than 6 months, you must extend both your CAQ and study permit even if you have only one semester left in order to graduate.

As soon as you obtain your new study permit, you must provide a copy of it to McGill Legal Documents.

Applying Online

If you want to renew your study permit from inside Canada, you can apply online for a Study Permit Extension. Once approved, your new study permit will be mailed to the Canadian address you indicated in your application. Read the Study Permit Renewal Guide before you start.

Applying at Port of Entry (Land Border or Airport)

BIOMETRICS: U.S. Permanent Residents may be required to provide biometrics when applying for their temporary resident documents. U.S. citizens are currently exempt from the biometrics requirement. For more information, see Immigration Canada's website.

If you decide to apply for your new study permit at a Port of Entry (e.g. land border or airport), you do not need to complete an application form.

You will need to bring with you:

  • Your valid passport
  • Your CAQ (certificate or approval letter)
  • A proof of enrolment letter from McGill (available on Minerva)
  • Recent proof of your financial capacity to pay for your tuition and fees and living expenses for one year of studies
  • The processing fee of $150 CAD (CAD or U.S. cash, debit or credit card accepted)
  • Fees for biometrics (if applicable) 
  • If you are a minor (under 17 years of age), you must have copies of your custodianship documents on hand. 

Proof of financial capacity:

The border officer may ask you to prove that you have the funds to cover your tuition and fees and living expenses for one year of studies. If you will be completing your studies in less than one year, you must demonstrate that you have the funds to cover the remainder of your studies and stay in Canada.

Examples of proof of financial capacity include:

  • Your 4 most recent bank statements and/or a recent bank letter stating your current balance
  • The 4 most recent bank statements and/or recent bank letters stating the current balance of the bank account(s) belonging to the person(s) paying your tuition and living expenses. These should be accompanied by a letter from the person(s) and a copy of their ID.
  • Proof of financial aid, scholarships, stipends, etc.
  • Proof of payment of tuition and related fees
  • Proof of payment of student residence fees

See Immigration Canada's website for more examples of how to prove your financial capacity. 

In addition to the information above, please also review ISS' FAQs page.

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