If you’re interested in studying internationally, finances play a huge role in picking the right country, city and school. Exactly how much does it cost to study in Canada?
We’re going to break down all the costs that come with studying in Canada so you can decide if studying in Canada is a good option for you.
Most foreign students will need a study permit issued by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to study in Canada. To get one, you need to show things like proof of financial support, that you have no criminal record, are healthy, and more. To learn more about the study permit itself, check out our blog post here.
When applying for a study permit, you need to show proof of financial support. This is proof that you can pay for tuition, living expenses, travel and support any other family members included in your application.
Let’s go over how much each of these might cost:
Universities and colleges in Canada have different tuition levels depending on the type program and how long the program is. International students will also pay a different and higher amount.
The average tuition for an international undergrad program in Canada is $22,500 USD (~$29,714 CAD) per year. Humanities programs will usually be cheaper, but medical and engineering classes are much more expensive. Management courses are typically the cheapest.
Postgraduate tuition in Canada is usually lower than undergrad fees. The average postgrad program for international students costs $13,437 USD (~$17,744 CAD) per year.
Tuition will likely be one of the bigger expenses you incur, so deciding on your school and program is an important step.
You should also consider the cost of living in Canada, particularly in the area you plan on moving to. Canada is a large country with cities of all sizes, so the living expenses can vary wildly.
Canadian study permit applications require proof you have enough to cover you and your family’s living expenses, as per the chart below:
However, you may want to budget for more than this depending on your spending habits, grocery budget, if you want a meal plan from the school, or other expenses you may incur.
Toronto was listed as the most expensive city to live in Canada. The average renter will spend $2,350 CAD per month on a 1-bedroom apartment. Plus, food costs are about $535 CAD per month. All of this can add up quickly, especially if you do not have any roommates to split costs with.
Housing costs in Vancouver are also high. You can expect to pay between $1,900 to $3,000 on your one-bedroom apartment there – even more, if you live near the downtown area. Housing can be very expensive in cities, but living with roommates or in suburban areas can keep costs down.
On the other hand, smaller cities and towns can be much cheaper to live in than the big ones so if you’re on a budget, it’s best to look outside of Toronto and Vancouver.
To see an example of the cost of living for a newly landed immigrant couple in Toronto, read our blog post here.
To submit your study permit application, you will incur some government fees from IRCC as well. These include:
IRCC will accept proof you have enough to support yourself from the following documents:
Keep in mind you will need to show you have enough funds for your cost of living and tuition for the length of your program (if less than 1 year), or for the first 12 months if your program is longer than 1 year.
Studying internationally is generally expensive, but how much does it cost to study in Canada compared to other countries? Canada is very reasonable, especially when compared to studying in the US. Cutting costs by going to Canada can be a good idea to improve your quality of life, help you get through school without worrying too much about expenses and has a smooth path to getting permanent residency too.
If you’re interested in studying in Canada, make sure to sign up for the free Visto portal here to find more info on moving to Canada, obtaining a study permit and more! You can also take our free study permit assessment to determine your chances at getting an approval here.