2. Before You Travel
2. Before You Travel
A letter of introduction confirms that you have been approved for a study permit and it includes your permit reference number. When you arrive in Canada, you will need to show this letter to the border services officer in order to get your study permit.
For more information, visit the Permits and Visas section.
The following 4 Canadian airports are currently accepting international flights:
- Toronto Pearson International Airport
- Montréal-Trudeau International Airport
- Calgary International Airport
- Vancouver International Airport
As you will need to quarantine for a minimum of 14 days upon entering Canada, please visit the Important Dates section to find out when you should arrive if you have in-person classes scheduled for the upcoming semester. You will not be able to connect to a domestic flight until after your 3-night stopover at a government-authorized hotel located near one of the above airports.
When booking your flight, ensure that you purchase a refundable ticket in case you need to adjust your travel plans. Here's a tip: avoid booking through third-party services, and book directly with airlines instead. Many third-party agencies will not provide refunds.
Upon arriving in Canada, you will be required to quarantine for a minimum of 14 days without delay. For air travellers, this includes a mandatory 3-night stay at a government-authorized hotel at your own expense, where you will await the results from your COVID-19 test administered at the Canadian port of entry (i.e. your "Day-1 test").
Travellers are exempt from the 3-night hotel stopover and must stay at a suitable place for the full 14-day quarantine period if they:
- have proof of a positive COVID-19 molecular test taken between 14 and 90 days prior to their flight to Canada
- are 17 years of age or younger, and not accompanied by a person who is 18 years of age or older (i.e. unaccompanied minors)
- are 18 years of age or older, dependent on one or more other people for care or support because of mental or physical limitation, and not accompanied by a person who is 18 years of age or older (i.e. unaccompanied dependants)
Note: The 14-day quarantine period is mandatory for all travellers entering Canada, even if you: do not have symptoms of COVID-19; tested negative for COVID-19; recovered from COVID-19; or received a COVID-19 vaccination. Your quarantine period begins on the day that you arrive in Canada.
Book your stay at a government-authorized hotel for the first 3 nights of your quarantine
You must reserve a 3-night stay at a government-authorized hotel prior to boarding your flight to Canada. All hotels are located near the 4 Canadian airports currently accepting international flights.
Book directly with the hotel or call the main booking line
You are encouraged to book directly with one of the government-authorized hotels listed here. Some of the hotels offer online booking for government-authorized accommodation. For all others, mention that you require accommodation for the COVID-19 mandatory 3-night stopover to ensure you are booked correctly.
You can also reserve and pay for your 3-night hotel stopover through GB Travel Canada Inc. by calling:
- 1-613-830-2992 (collect outside of North America)
- 1-800-294-8253 (toll-free within North America)
Regular hours of operation are 8 am to 11 pm Eastern Time, 7 days a week. Calls received after hours will be limited to emergencies.
In order to book your hotel stay, you will need to provide:
- traveller name(s)
- date(s) of birth
- gender (male, female, or undisclosed)
- arrival city and date
- payment information
- special requests and accessibility concerns
- special requests and accessibility concerns
- email address
You will receive an email confirming your reservation within 4 hours of booking.
Your 3-night reservation at a government-authorized hotel must be fully pre-paid and is non-refundable, and will be charged to the credit card provided at the time of booking. Centennial College will provide financial support to all eligible students to help subsidize this cost. Find out more about the partial reimbursement for the 3-night hotel stay.
Hotel rates may vary by location – you can view price ranges by province on the Government of Canada website. The price will include costs associated with the:
- room – includes television, telephone, Wi-Fi, and accessibility for wheelchairs and other assistive devices
- food – meals will be delivered to your room 3 times daily, and will meet your medical or dietary requirements
- security – there is 24-hour security onsite to ensure your safety and privacy
- transportation – the hotel is responsible for safely transporting travellers from the airport
- infection prevention and control measures
If you are travelling together with others, you may share your hotel accommodation. In addition to the base room rate, you will need to pay an extra fee for each person staying in the same room.
Discover more answers to your questions about the mandatory hotel stopover.
Make arrangements to complete the remainder of your quarantine at a suitable place
You will be required to stay in the government-authorized hotel while awaiting the results of your Day-1 test taken on arrival at the airport. If you receive a negative test result, you can move to a pre-arranged location to complete your mandatory quarantine.
You will need to confirm that you have a suitable place to quarantine where you:
- can stay for the remainder of your quarantine period
- have access to the basic necessities of life, including water, food, medication and heat without leaving quarantine
- can avoid contact with others who did not travel with you
- have no guests
Learn more about where you can and cannot quarantine, and be sure to review the guidelines for quarantining.
Quarantining at Centennial Place
If you are signing a lease at Centennial Place Student Residence located at Progress Campus, you can make arrangements to complete your quarantine there as well. For more information, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 416-438-2216 Ext. 6294.
Quarantining at a hotel
Centennial College has also arranged accommodation options at several hotels located near Toronto Pearson International Airport where you can complete your quarantine. You will be billed for the charges incurred during your stay either upon check-in or checkout, and the hotels offer flexible cancellation policies. See pricing and details.
Many of the College's partner hotels are on the list of government-authorized hotels; therefore, you may want to consider staying at one of these hotels (in the same room) for the entire quarantine period. Please check directly with the hotel to find out how to link your initial 3-night booking with your reservation for the remainder of your quarantine.
Stay within the GTA
The College advises you to complete your quarantine in the Greater Toronto Area (or GTA), as we will provide complimentary private transportation to your place of quarantine (if needed). If you choose to complete your quarantine outside the GTA, you will be required to pay for your own transportation.
You can travel to the GTA to carry out the remainder of your quarantine if you initially flew into another Canadian city (i.e. Montréal, Calgary or Vancouver), completed your 3-night stay at a local government-authorized hotel, and received a negative result from your Day-1 test.
The GTA is a large geographic region (more than 7,000 square kilometres) that includes Toronto, North America’s fourth largest city, and 25 urban, suburban and rural municipalities. You may have heard of GTA regions such as Halton, Peel, York and Durham, and their cities Burlington, Mississauga, Markham and Pickering, to name just a few.
Please upload important admissions and immigration documents such as your Centennial College offer letter, academic transcripts/certificates, English proficiency test score (if English is not your first language), passport, and study permit. If you have not received your study permit, you can upload it after arriving in Canada. Your documents will be reviewed by our International Admissions Team.
You must also submit your flight details and quarantine information to the College by completing and uploading the International Student Quarantine Plan Form. We will assess your quarantine plan to ensure compliance with the Government of Canada's quarantine guidelines. Use this form to indicate if you require additional support for your quarantine due to documented disabilities or other health conditions so we can connect with you prior to your travel. You are also encouraged to contact Centennial’s Centre for Accessible Learning and Counselling Services (CALCS) should you need extra support while studying.
Uploading your documents is one of the steps to register at Centennial College.
Fill out the Country of Residence Survey to inform the College that you will be coming to Canada, provide us with your expected date of arrival, and confirm that you have submitted your International Student Quarantine Plan Form. If your flight information or quarantine plan changes, you must notify us immediately by taking the survey again.
Completing this survey is one of the steps to register at Centennial College.
You must use this app to:
- submit your contact, travel and quarantine information to the Government of Canada
- report your arrival at your place of quarantine to the Government of Canada
- provide a daily COVID-19 symptom self-assessment to the Government of Canada during your quarantine period
- receive push notifications from the Government of Canada
Use this app to:
- upload and store your important documents digitally before travelling to Canada
- report your arrival at your place of quarantine to Centennial College
- provide a daily COVID-19 symptom self-assessment to Centennial College during your quarantine period
- receive push notifications from Centennial College
Use this app to stay in communication with the College during your quarantine period. A Centennial staff member will be calling you via Microsoft Teams to ensure that you have safely arrived in Canada and to conduct regular check-ins.
Check out our guides on how to download and use Microsoft Teams on desktop or mobile.
You must provide the following information through the ArriveCAN app prior to boarding your flight to Canada:
- contact information for you and other people travelling with you, as long as you are quarantining at the same location
- travel details, such as your date of arrival, flight number, airport, airline, and the purpose of your travel (i.e. post-secondary study)
- the booking reference number for your 3-night reservation at a government-authorized hotel
- answer questions about your quarantine plan, in order to demonstrate that you have made arrangements at a suitable place where you can complete your quarantine
- indicate any symptoms of COVID-19 you may be experiencing
- acknowledge that you understand the requirements to show proof of a negative or positive COVID-19 molecular test result
Once you submit your information, an ArriveCAN confirmation receipt will be displayed and emailed to you.
When you land in Canada, you will be going directly into quarantine for a minimum of 14 days. With that in mind, you should pack the necessary items that will make your time more comfortable and help to support your physical and mental wellbeing.
Below is a list of supplies that you may want to consider bringing with you. Refrain from carrying too many non-essentials as you will have limited space in your luggage. Before packing, be sure to also consult the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority website to verify which items you are allowed to bring and to find useful travel tips.
Items for travelling to Canada
We recommend that you pack the following items in your carry-on luggage for easy access:
- Non-medical masks/face coverings and disposable gloves
- you are required to wear a non-medical mask or face covering during your flight to Canada, when transiting through Canadian airports, and during limited face-to-face contact with others (whom you did not travel with) while in quarantine
- pack multiple masks and extra pairs of gloves
- Alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- should contain at least 60% alcohol
- Pens to fill out forms
Items for your quarantine period
- disinfecting wipes and/or household cleaning products to use in your living spaces
- hand soap, dish soap, laundry soap
- disposable paper towels
- several days' worth of any prescription medications you need
- acetaminophen (e.g. Tylenol), ibuprofen (e.g. Advil), or aspirin for fever and aches
Important: According to the Government of Canada, you should avoid using these medications as much as possible as they could mask early symptoms of COVID-19.
- antihistamines for treating allergies
- lozenges for sore throats
- cough and cold medications
- basic first aid kit
- a digital thermometer that works under your tongue is inexpensive and easy to use for checking your temperature (make sure you have one with new batteries)
Food and drink
- favourite comfort snacks
- reusable water bottle
- comfortable, weather appropriate clothes (including pyjamas and undergarments) for at least 14 days
- shampoo, body soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, facial tissues, feminine hygiene products, etc.
Towels and linen
- bath towel, hand towel
- bed sheets, pillow/pillowcase, blanket
- books, magazines
- art supplies, crafts, adult colouring books
- puzzles, games
- portable fitness equipment (yoga mat, resistance band)
- electronics (phone, laptop, chargers, headphones)
Ensure that you have all of the necessary documents for travelling to and entering Canada, and verify that all of the information within these documents is correct. You will need to show these documents to the airline when boarding your flight and to a border services officer when you arrive in Canada.
Documents you need
Note: You may be asked to present additional documents, so carry all documents that may help your entry to Canada.
- Airline ticket
- A valid passport or travel document
- A valid Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) or visitor visa (temporary resident visa)
- A valid Canadian study permit or letter of introduction
- Proof that you have enough money to support yourself (and family members who come with you) during your stay in Canada
- Letter of acceptance issued by Centennial College
- Travel support letter issued by Centennial College, which explains why it is necessary for you to travel to Canada
- to receive this letter, you must have successfully uploaded your documents and completed the Country of Residence Survey
- it will be issued approximately 1 week prior to your scheduled flight date
- Letters of reference or any other documents the visa office told you to bring
- Proof that you have booked and prepaid for a 3-night stay at a government-authorized hotel
- Your quarantine plan
- print the International Student Quarantine Plan Form you submitted to the College
- Your ArriveCAN confirmation receipt
- you can show this receipt from the ArriveCAN app, your email, or a printout
- Paper or electronic proof of your pre-entry COVID-19 molecular test results
- Children under 18 should have valid identification with them. Find out about the requirements for minor children.
While travelling, keep your documents with you at all times as you may be denied entry to Canada if any of your documents are missing. Put these papers and all other valuables in your carry-on luggage (not your checked luggage) so they can stay on your person and are easy for you to access. In addition to bringing your physical (official) documents, you should use the iCent app to upload and store digital copies of your documents as an extra precaution before travelling.
All travellers entering Canada (age 5 or older) must provide proof of a:
- negative result from a COVID-19 molecular test taken within 72 hours of the scheduled departure time of your flight to Canada or
- positive result from a COVID-19 molecular test taken between 14 and 90 days before your scheduled flight to Canada*
*You may travel to Canada if you tested positive for COVID-19 between 14 and 90 days prior to departure. According to the Government of Canada, this is because individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 can continue to test positive long after they have recovered and are no longer infectious.
What type of test
You must take one of the accepted types of molecular tests shown here, not an antigetn test.
When to take your test
Your pre-entry test needs to be conducted within 72 hours of the scheduled departure time of your flight to Canada. If you have a connecting flight, the test must be taken within 72 hours of the scheduled departure time of your last direct flight to Canada; therefore, you you may need to schedule the test in your transit city.
You do not need to take the pre-entry test if you have proof of a positive COVID-19 molecular test taken between 14 and 90 days before your flight to Canada.
Where to take your test
Your test should be administered at a reputable laboratory or testing facility – i.e. one recognized by the local government or accredited by a third party, such as a professional organization or international standards organization.
Proof of your test results
You must present an accepted test result which includes:
- traveller name and date of birth
- name and civic address of the laboratory/clinic/facility that administered the test
- the date on which the test was conducted
- the type of test conducted
- the test result
You also need to retain proof of your test results for the 14-day period that begins on the day you arrive Canada.
Note: You must show proof of your test results, even if you: tested negative for COVID-19 prior to the 72-hour period; recovered from COVID-19; or received a COVID-19 vaccination. Airlines will refuse boarding to travellers who are unable to provide a valid test result.
Upon arriving in Canada, you will be required to take a COVID-19 molecular test before exiting the airport. To speed you through testing at the airport, you are encouraged to register in advance with the test provider: