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01/02/2024BY Parth

Change Visitor Visa to Study Permit

🇨🇦 VisaHub.ca legal team is specialized in Changing Status for Study Permit / Work Permit / PR.

🇨🇦Can I change from Tourist Visa (Visitor) to Student Visa (Permit) in Canada?

The answer is Yes!
If you are inside Canada and wishing to change from a Visitor Status to Study Visa (Also known as Study Permit) as long as you meet certain eligibility then you will be qualified  to apply your study permit inside Canada without leaving Canada.

Why should you change your Visitor visa to a Study Permit within Canada? 

  • Apply Study Permit Inside Canada is Easier

    IRCC overseas visa offices (Embassy / Consulate/ High commission) often refuse study permit applicants who have the following profiles: ❌Over age of 26, especially single female applicants. ㅤ ❌Unable to provide IELTS 7 score ❌Has 6 months gap in Education / Employment ❌Has a spouse or already have child ❌From the country that has high Inflation rate ✅However, applying study permit inside Canada and convert tourist / visitor visa to study permit is often the solution for these type of applicant to obtain Canadian Study Permit.

  • Spouse will be eligible to apply Open Work Permit

    Study Permit holders will be able to work in Canada. Your spouse will be eligible to apply for an Open Work Permit.

  • The fastest way to immigrate to Canada is change from a visitor visa to a study permit

    More and more people choose to convert their tourist visa to study visa (study permit) so they can immigrate to Canada. To be eligible to change from a visitor visa to a study visa is to finish a pre-require course while under visitor status, upon completion of the short term pre-requisite course , you will be qualified to covert your status to student without leaving Canada. Compared with other ways to immigrate to Canada, your spouse and family members can join you right away. It is safe to say that converting from a visitor visa to a study visa is the best immigration method with the lowest threshold, the lowest cost, and the highest success rate.

  • Receive study visa without leaving Canada

    Changing visa status from visitor visa to a study permit you don't have to leave the country to do so.

3. Challenges of applying for traditional student visa in Canada

As we all know, Canadian student visas have always been difficult to get approval. There are at least three major tests: funding, language, and study purpose.

To study in Canada, international students require proof of funds of at least $25,000 minimum amount of money in their bank accounts or their sponsor’s account statement. An additional amount of funds is needed for the accompanying spouse and each dependent child. Tuition in Canada starts at approximately $15000 CAD per year, for diploma and graduate programs in college. Though the program delivery instructions clearly state that the student is required to provide proof of sufficient funds for the first year of the program, merely focusing on the first year may not be enough to convince the IRCC officer. 

You must prove that you can support yourself, and the family members who come with you, while you are in Canada.

To prove your funds, there are some documentaries that you need to add:

  • Proof of a Canadian bank account in your name, if you’ve transferred money to Canada
  • Guaranteed Investment Certificate (GIC) from a participating Canadian financial institution
  • Proof of a student or education loan from a bank
  • Your bank statements for the past 4 months
  • A bank draft that can be converted to Canadian dollars
  • Proof you paid tuition and housing fees
  • A letter from the person or school giving you money, or
  • Proof of funding paid from within Canada, if you have a scholarship or are in a Canadian-funded educational program

Language tests can be a real challenge for a lot of people. Even though good grades are a key factor in visa approval, consistency across previous academic performance is also a strong point to get your student visa. Visa officer will take a look at your language ability, such as English or French tests (IELTS/TOFEL scores). With a combination of uneven grades and a low score, a visa officer may question your ability to cope with English-taught courses and can deny your application. Getting a student visa isn’t as simple and straightforward as it may seem, but if you choose to change from visitor visa to study permit, there is no IELTS requirement to some Public Canadian College.

It’s important to remember that a student visa is only a temporary visa, which means that it has an expiration date. As such, a visa officer must trust that you will return to your country of residence by the end of your authorized stay. Previous travel history, family ties in Canada and your country of residence, and the purpose of your visit could all potentially cause a visa officer to suspect you may overstay your visa and reject your application. Therefore people with older age are extremely hard to get a student visa in a traditional way. However, if they come to Canada as a tourist, they can change tourist visa status to study visa status and legally stay inside Canada to study, work or immigrate to Canada.

4. Who can change Visitor Visa to Study Visa (Study Permit) in Canada?

When it comes to applying for a student visa in Canada, age is one of the most important elements for a visa officer to approve your case. If the applicants have more than 2 years after graduation or are over 25 years old, there is a risk of “advanced age”.  However, there are no age eligibility criteria if you convert from a visitor visa to a study permit. Our customers have a wide range of ages, from 19 years old to 55 years old. Change from a tourist visa to a study visa has a 90% of success rate.

The education gap has two meanings. The first meaning of the education gap is the leap you take in your work experience to complete your education. The second meaning of the education gap is when you take off after higher education or graduation. The gap can happen because of personal reasons. Some people take a gap to improve concentration and focus. Both definitions are referred to a person who has a gap between years of education. If you are applying for a student visa from outside Canada, the education gap might be a problem, but if you are applying for a study permit inside Canada, the education gap is not a major problem as long as you can justify the reasons properly. We had students with years of education gap in between before applying for a study permit and still successful.

The passing rate of the second visa application for student visa is lower after the first refusal. If the applicants have a major change that occurred after the first visa application (such as inheritance, IELTS re-examination score improvement), then it is difficult for the Immigration Bureau to reverse the case and give you approval for the second time. 

Make sure to apply for the travel visa first, and then apply for the study visa! The refusal of a tourist visa has little effect on the student visa; once a tourist visa is issued, an additional channel and insurance are given to the student visa. After entering the country through a tourist visa, you can apply for a student visa in Canada by having a study permit first, it has a higher success rate. If you are applying for a student visa from your country and got rejected, then apply for a travel visa, the chance of denial is lower than applying for a student visa. 

A lot of people want to come to Canada but don’t know where or how to start. Especially people with a history of visa refusal, older age, single mother/single father who want to immigrate to Canada to work. Another option for them is changing visa status from visitor visa to study permit. This is a safe way to immigrate to Canada without proving a lot of documents.

When applying for a Canadian student visa, you need to prove your financial support: A bank statement, security statement, or custody statement usually qualify as proof of funds.  Usually, the government asks for six months of bank statements that show that you have enough show money. If the government doesn’t believe that you have enough money to support yourself and your family in Canada, they could refuse your application. The funding requirements for visa application inside Canada through changing status from visitor to study permit are much simpler.

5. How to apply for changing status from visitor visa to study permit in Canada?


1. Obtain a visitor visa/tourist visa in Canada

Applying for a visitor visa in Canada can be a challenge for people from a third country such as Vietnam, India, China,... Some key elements to get approval for a tourist visa is travel history, proof of financial support and domestic connections.

More information

2. Choose a School in Canada

Completed a short-term course or program of study that is a prerequisite to their enrolling at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI). 

You can also contact us for help; we will plan the most suitable language school and course for you based on your current situation, including your place of residence, level of your language and your future plans.

Contact us

3. Short-term course and Admission

Tourist visas can't stay longer than 6 months of entry, therefore, applicants must calculate their own length of stay and the duration of the course, and then make a detailed plan to avoid the risk of being forced to leave. 

Read More

4. Apply to a Canadian College

You should check the admission requirements and language requirements (entry requirements) of the College you are applying for before registering for a short-term course, and apply immediately after completing the course. The school will also send you a letter of acceptance within a short period of time (LOA). If you’re the family member of someone who has a study permit or work permit application that’s been approved in writing before you come to Canada, you don’t need a letter of acceptance.

Read more

5. Apply for student visa

After completing the above steps, as long as the travel visa is still within its validity period, the applicant can apply for a Canadian study visa in Canada. Same as ordinary student visa applications, applicants can register for an account through the official website of the Canadian Immigration Service to complete the entire application process. You have to provide:

  • Passport
  • Tourist VISA
  • Application form
  • Admission Notice
  • Proof of funds
  • Certificate of academic record
  • Explanation letter
Read More

Explaining Process

Changing your visa status from visitor visa to a study permit inside Canada has a 98% approval rate. If you’re taking prerequisite courses inside Canada as a tourist, you don’t need a student visa to do so, you can apply for a study permit instead.

Our customers are mainly the parents of international students, who are relatively older. It is not a secret to applying for a study travel visa, and the clerk has made a clear request for this. The first step to change a tourist visa to a study permit is to complete short-term prerequisite courses. The Canadian Immigration Service’s official description of the transfer situation: “A student who has completed a short-term course or study plan is a requirement for admission to a designated educational institution.” The Canadian Immigration Law provides a further judicial interpretation of the short-term course: “In Canada, you can take a six-month short-term course without a student visa”.

The course should meet the following requirements: 

  1. The course must last for 6 months; 
  2. The course cannot be part of a long-term course; 
  3. You must be able to complete the course within your legal residence time (usually within 6 months after joining) 

The key to a successful transfering visa from travel visa to study visa is to register for a short-term prerequisite course (prerequisite course) within 6 months, and your course institution must be on the DLI list (list of designated educational institutions). 

After completing the short-term course and obtaining the university acceptance letter, you can apply for a study visa. 

When the visa officer approves the travel and transfer, the detailed inspection is as follows: 

  1. Whether you entered the country legally during your legal stay; 
  2. Whether the course of study meets the above requirements; 
  3. Whether you have successfully completed the course and been terminated from accepting the long-term university course; 
  4. Do you have enough money to study and live in Canada? 

Q&A: Change from tourist visa to study visa in Canada

You can apply for study in Canada if you:

– Are enrolled at a designated learning institution (DLI)

-If you’re coming from outside Canada to study as an international student, your DLI will have to be on the list of DLIs with an approved COVID-19 readiness plan

-Prove you have enough money to pay for your:
+ tuition fees
+ living expenses for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada, and
return transportation for yourself and any family members who come with you to Canada-Obey the law, have no criminal record and get a police certificate (if required)

– Are in good health and get a medical exam (if required), and

– Prove to an officer that you will leave Canada when your study permit expires

No, You have to take a language course to transfer from visitor visa to study permit. According to the law of June 1, 2014, applicants must first complete a language course and obtain a graduation certificate. This is one of the necessary conditions for submitting a study permit, even if you already have an IELTS score that meets the admission requirements of the institution.

A study permit is usually valid for the length of your study program (range from 1-3 years), plus an extra 90 days. The 90 days let you prepare to leave Canada or apply to extend your stay.

If you don’t finish your courses before the date on your permit, you must apply to extend your stay as a student. If you don’t, you’ll need to stop studying and leave Canada.

If you finish your studies early, your permit will stop being valid 90 days after you complete your studies, no matter what day is printed on the study permit.

You’ve completed your studies on the date your school first notifies you by completion letter, transcript, degree or diploma.

You must provide proof of the date your school notifies you, or the date you get your degree, diploma or certificate. If you don’t have proof, we’ll use the earliest issue date on the document. We may confirm this date with your school.

The child needs to have a travel visa. Outside Quebec, if the child has a school admission notice, you can apply for a student visa. In Quebec, you need to apply for a CAQ first, and then apply for a student visa; if you don’t want your child to apply for a student visa, in accordance with the immigration law, your child can holds a tourist visa, then you can enter a public school for free during the validity period of your study visa, but please note that the child’s legal status is valid for 6 months. After 6 months, you can choose to leave the country and re-enter; or Apply for Visitor Record.

No, because once you submit your application, you have an implied status, which is valid until you get the visa result. If the approval is passed, the student visa will take effect from the approval date. If the approval fails, the refusal letter will be written to leave immediately.

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