Revised requirements to better protect international students
December 14, 2023
Canada is a top destination for international students, thanks to our high-quality educational institutions; our welcoming, diverse society; and the opportunities for some to work or immigrate permanently after graduation. While international students have contributed to life on campuses and innovation across the country, they have also experienced some serious challenges, such as finding adequate housing, as they pursue their studies in Canada.
The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, announced today that starting January 1, 2024, the cost-of-living financial requirement for study permit applicants will be raised so that international students are financially prepared for life in Canada. Moving forward, this threshold will be adjusted each year when Statistics Canada updates the low-income cut-off (LICO). LICO represents the minimum income necessary to ensure that an individual does not have to spend a greater than average portion of income on necessities.
The cost-of-living requirement for study permit applicants has not changed since the early 2000s, when it was set at $10,000 for a single applicant. As such, the financial requirement hasn’t kept up with the cost of living over time, resulting in students arriving in Canada only to learn that their funds aren’t adequate. For 2024, a single applicant will need to show they have $20,635, representing 75% of LICO, in addition to their first year of tuition and travel costs. This change will apply to new study permit applications received on or after January 1, 2024.