Safe arrival plan

Please note:

As of April 25, fully vaccinated travellers are no longer required to submit a quarantine plan to the Government of Canada via the ArriveCAN App. However, if you are not exempted from the requirement of quarantine, Conestoga College still requires you to submit a quarantine plan to the college via the iCent App. Failure to download and follow the steps outlined in the app will lead to serious consequences including being blocked from attending classes and potentially being removed from the college without refund of fees.

For more information, please see Mandatory: Download the iCent and ArriveCAN apps below. For frequently asked questions and latest updates, visit the college's primary resource for COVID-19.

Use this plan outlined below as a reference to help support you and your transition to Canada and Conestoga College. Make sure to read and understand each section before you travel to Canada.

1. Getting ready to travel to Canada

Mandatory: Download the iCent and ArriveCAN apps

iCent app

The iCent app is an essential smartphone tool for you to begin your studies at Conestoga College. It includes pre- and post-arrival information prepared by Conestoga and will guide you through the protocols and the information you must follow during your transition to Canada and to Conestoga College. The COVID Safe Canada Program by iCent app is designed to meet local, provincial, and national COVID-19 guidelines and institutional guidelines. 

Follow these instructions to begin using iCent: 

  1. To download the app, search “iCent” in Google Play or the App Store.
  2. Enter “Canada” as your destination country and “Conestoga College” as your institution name.
  3. You are required to log into iCent using your Conestoga ID and password.
  4. Fill in the information on the forms about yourself to begin using Conestoga College's dashboard.

If you are having trouble logging into the app, contact: support@icent.app 

Note: It is mandatory for you to download the iCent app. You must complete this by the time you arrive in Canada, regardless of your vaccination status (i.e., whether you are fully vaccinated, partially vaccinated, or not vaccinated at all).  

Failure to download the College’s mandatory iCent app (and follow the steps as outlined in the app) will also lead to serious consequences, including being blocked from attending classes and potential removal from the college without refund of fees. 

ArriveCAN app

The ArriveCAN app is the Canadian federal government Canada Border Service Agency (CBSA) app. You must submit your travel plans through the ArriveCAN app, even if you are fully vaccinated and are no longer required to submit a quarantine plan. If you are not fully vaccinated, you must submit your quarantine plan through the ArriveCAN app. Your quarantine plan lists where you will stay for the 14 days of quarantine, how you'll get to your destination, how you will get groceries, and how you will access essential services and medical care.  

Follow these instructions to begin using ArriveCAN:  

  1. To download the app, search “ArriveCAN” in Google Play or the App Store.
  2. Create an account with a valid email address. A security PIN will be sent to you for verification.
  3. Follow the instructions to enter the information on the forms required.

Note: It is mandatory for you to download the ArriveCan app. You must complete this by the time you arrive in Canada, regardless of your vaccination status (i.e., whether you are fully vaccinated, partially vaccinate or not vaccinated at all).  

Failure to download the ArriveCan app is a serious offense under Canada’s Quarantine Act, punishable by up to 6 months in prison and/or a fine of up to $1 million. The college is required by the Government of Canada to report students who do not comply with this mandate. In addition you will be prevented from attending classes and/or risk being removed from the college without fees refund. Be sure to retain the confirmation receipts you receive from ArriveCan, since additional copies are not available in the event you misplace the receipt. 

Please take this required compliance seriously in order to avoid consequences as outlined above. 

What to know before you travel

We invite you attend our Safe Arrival Plan webinar, where we explain what you must know before you travel and answer your questions. Please register for an upcoming webinar.   

As you plan for your travel to Canada, you must review the Government of Canada website for steps to follow upon entry to Canada, as these are mandatory for all travellers. The Government of Canada has emergency orders under the Quarantine Act which applies to everyone arriving in Canada.

Students and co-arriving immediate family members who plan to enter Canada must meet essential travel requirement. Requirements for essential travel and information on entry to Canada can also be found on the Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website.   

As of January 15, 2022, international students must qualify as fully vaccinated travellers to be able to enter Canada, unless you are a minor student (under the age of 18 years).   

Visit COVID-19 vaccinated travellers entering Canada to view the most recent information on quarantine exemptions.

Even if you meet the exemption requirements, you are still required to sign into the iCent app to complete your mandatory start questionnaire to report your travel plan to Canada.

To determine your travel eligibility, use the Find out if you can enter Canada tool. Start by selecting "a foreign national". Once you answer the question "Which best describes you or your reason for entry into Canada?" and you choose "international student (including students working in a health field)", you will get your results.

Vaccination policy

All students, employees and visitors accessing Conestoga campuses and facilities will need to be fully vaccinated (as defined by the Government of Canada) against COVID-19 as of January 2, 2022. If you have additional questions or concerns, please email covid19questions@conestogac.on.ca.   

Proof of vaccination can be uploaded online or through the Conestoga Mobile Safety app. To complete the process, you will need to provide the date(s) and product name(s) of each dose, as well as a copy of your final vaccine certificate. If you received your vaccinations in Ontario, you can obtain copies of your vaccine certificate from the province's Ministry of Health.           

If you have questions or require assistance with uploading, contact vaccinequestions@conestogac.on.ca.   

Read Conestoga's COVID Community Safety Policy (pdf)   

Getting vaccinated

You are required to report your COVID-19 immunization information to the Public Health Unit of the region that you currently live in. Please register your out-of-province vaccination with your local Public Health Unit:   

If you are not a resident of one of the above Public Health Units, you can find your local Public Health Unit through the provincial locator.   

Follow the Ministry of Health's COVID-19 Guidance for Individuals Vaccinated outside of Ontario/Canada (pdf).   

COVID-19 vaccination appointments are available to Conestoga students at the Kitchener - Doon campus. Read more.   

Vaccine resources

2. Preparing to enter Canada

Plan your arrival in Canada

Fully vaccinated travellers

Please note: even if you are fully vaccinated, the final determination of whether you qualify for the exemption is made by a government representative at the border based on the information presented at the time of entry into Canada.

You must:  

  1. Submit your travel plans to the ArriveCan and iCent apps.
  2. Plan your accommodation. Start your long-term housing search early. Please refer to our housing web page for more information on both long-term and short-term/temporary housing options, as well as the on-campus residence and Homestay information.
  3. Arrange your transportation from the airport to your destination.
  4. See suggested Travel to Canada Checklist (pdf) for mandatory documents and additional items to bring to Canada.

Non-vaccinated travellers

Please be aware that currently there is a 14-day mandatory quarantine requirement for unvaccinated travellers entering Canada. You are responsible for all costs associated with your 14-day mandatory quarantine period and long-term housing.

You must:  

  1. Submit your travel and quarantine plans to the ArriveCan and iCent apps. Note: it is your responsibility to secure accommodation where you can quarantine. You must have access to a separate washroom that is not shared with anyone other than your co-arriving family members. For hotel options, refer to our temporary housing resources.
  2. Plan your long-term accommodation. If you plan to live at a different location from your quarantine destination, refer to housing options for local accommodations.
  3. Arrange your transportation from the airport to your quarantine destination. Please ensure your transportation meets the Government of Canada's transportation requirements. While in transit in Canada you are required to:
    • avoid contact with others;
    • remain in the vehicle as much as possible;
    • pay at the pump if you need gas;
    • use a drive through if you need food;
    • put on your mask and be mindful of physical distancing and good hygiene practices, if you need to use a rest area.
  4. Make sure you have personal essentials during your 14-day quarantine period including: toiletries, groceries, medications, all necessary personal protective equipment (PPE) (including face coverings/masks), sanitizer, sanitizing wipes, credit card. Access the Personal Essentials Resources - Quarantine Planning document as you prepare your food and personal essentials plan.
  5. See suggested Travel to Canada Checklist (pdf) for mandatory documents and additional items to bring to Canada.
Prior to departure & boarding the airplane

Ensure you download the Canadian Border Services ArriveCAN app prior to your arrival in Canada and follow the instructions to help support and speed up your arrival process. This app is essential for you to provide mandatory information that is required upon your entry into Canada. 

Remember to download the iCent app for important resources and to confirm your arrival in Canada with Conestoga.

If you will be travelling to Canada from overseas, be sure to check your airline requirements and flight details before you travel. If you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19, you will not be allowed to enter Canada.

Prepare to practice airport safety: Bring a personal supply of (at least 2) non-medical face coverings to wear while you are in transit to Canada. Practice physical distancing by keeping 2 metres apart from others whenever possible and wash / sanitize your hands often. Prior to your flight, please review the Toronto Pearson Airport Safety Measures that are in effect.

3. Arriving in Canada

What to expect upon entry to Canada

Please visit the Toronto Pearson website for what to expect upon your arrival in Canada. When entering Canada, you may be:

  • asked if you have a cough, fever or difficulty breathing
  • asked to provide your credible travel information and proof of vaccination as referenced in your ArriveCAN app
  • confirmed whether you qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller and are exempted from quarantine
  • asked for your required travel documents

All air travellers arriving at Toronto Pearson International airport who are not fully vaccinated will be required to take a mandatory COVID-19 test. Fully vaccinated travellers will be randomly selected for on-arrival COVID-19 tests.

Please be sure to consult the Government of Canada’s Immigration and Citizenship website prior to travelling and monitor these changes closely as you plan to travel to Canada.

If you have any questions, please email our Transition Team at internationaltransition@conestogac.on.ca. They can guide you as you prepare to come to Canada to study at Conestoga College.

It is up to the discretion of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) Officer to approve or deny your travel. At the port of entry, the CBSA Officer will make a final determination on your eligibility to enter Canada and confirm whether you qualify as a fully vaccinated traveller and are exempted from quarantine.

Mandatory check in

Complete the mandatory arrival check-in and daily check-ins (if applicable) through the iCent app when you arrive in Canada. The daily check-in must be done every day for the full 14-day self-isolation/quarantine period, if you have been asked to quarantine. (See details in the Getting Ready to Travel to Canada section above.)

Do not violate the daily check-in requirements of your quarantine. This is a serious offence under the Quarantine Act and will have significant consequences. You must be compliant and complete your daily check-ins.      

Note: All students are required to complete the iCent Mandatory Start Questionnaire form and arrival check in, regardless of your vaccination status (i.e., even if you are fully or partially vaccinated). If you do not comply by downloading the iCent app and completing the mandatory forms within 48 hours of arriving in Canada, this will result in your student account being put on hold and you will not be able to register for or attend your classes. You will then be removed from your program without refund. It is imperative that you give this your immediate attention in order to avoid the consequences outlined herein.

Self-isolation & quarantine

Non-vaccinated travellers

With your pre-arranged transportation (see "Plan your arrival in Canada” above), please go directly to your accommodation. You must wear a suitable non-medical mask or face covering while in transit. You must practice physical distancing at all times. You are responsible for all transportation costs.

Once you arrive at your pre-arranged quarantine accommodation, you are now ready to start your mandatory 14-day self-isolation/quarantine period. During this period, you must remain in your quarantine location for the full 14 days without any visitors. You are not permitted to stay with vulnerable populations, in a communal or group setting to help protect yourself and others from any potential exposure to COVID-19. Please ensure you fully review and comply with the Government of Canada requirements on How to Self-Isolate during your quarantine period.

Once your 14-day quarantine period is over and you don't have any COVID-19 symptoms, continue to follow guidelines to help Stop the spread of COVID-19.

Please remember you must continue your daily check in with iCent app for the full 14-days.    

Access our Personal Essentials - Quarantine Planning document as you prepare your food and personal essentials plan.    

Fully vaccinated travellers

Fully vaccinated travellers who meet specific conditions will be exempt from quarantine unless otherwise determined by the officer at the port of entry.    

Even if you meet the exemption conditions, you are still required to sign into the iCent app to submit your Mandatory Start Questionnaire before your departure.

Self-isolation & quarantine violation penalties

According to the Government of Canada website, violating any instructions provided to you upon entry in Canada and during your 14-day quarantine is an offence under the Quarantine Act and could lead up to:       

  • 6 months in prison, and/or
  • $750,000 in fines

If you choose to break your mandatory quarantine or isolation and you cause the death or serious bodily harm of another person, you could face:

  • a fine of up to $1,000,000, or
  • imprisonment of up to 3 years, or
  • both

You will be called from a Canadian Government telephone number: 1-888-336-7735 to verify your compliance during your 14-day quarantine. Please note: Conestoga College is required to and will report all non-compliances related to the Quarantine Act.

Contact us

International Office

Email your International Transition Coordinator team if you have any questions or concerns during your quarantine or upon your arrival.     

Accessible Learning

If you require accommodations to support a temporary or permanent health condition, please contact Accessible Learning at accessibility@conestogac.on.ca or leave a voicemail at 519-748-5220, ext. 3232.

Health & Wellness

If you feel sick, have any medical concerns, or want to speak to someone about your mental health, please contact Student Health & Wellness Services by emailing mywellness@conestogac.on.ca from your Conestoga student email account to arrange a time to speak with a health care professional. During your quarantine period, we can offer telephone and virtual appointments.

International student health insurance coverage

StudentCare Insurance: please call StudentCare's toll-free line at 1-844-418-0511 as soon as possible for an early arrival emergency. Coverage begins 30 days prior to the start of your classes, or the day you arrive, whichever comes later.

For more information, please refer to Health insurance & medical care.       

Please note: If you arrive more than 30 days before the start of your classes, it is your responsibility to purchase additional health insurance. Medical care is very expensive for students who have medical emergencies without health insurance, and you should be certain you have coverage before travelling to Canada.                           

What if I feel sick during self-isolation/quarantine period?

Step 1: During the first 14 days of self-isolation/quarantine, if you are not feeling well and you think you have COVID-19 symptoms, use the self-assessment to help determine how to seek further care.

For severe symptoms, call 911. (e.g. difficulty breathing, severe chest pain, losing consciousness).      

Step 2: Access a medical assessment from a health professional over the phone or virtually:                    

  • You can access a free medical assessment through Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000. A registered nurse will ask you about your symptoms and travel history, and direct you to the most appropriate level of care. Follow their instructions carefully.
  • Email the Conestoga Medical Care Clinic at medicalcare@conestogac.on.ca from your Conestoga student email account to arrange an in-person or virtual appointment with a nurse practitioner or physician.
  • If you need immediate assistance when the Conestoga Medical Care Clinic is closed, you can make a virtual appointment through the StudentCare Dialogue app.

Step 3: If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or a positive self-assessment, get tested for COVID through a COVID-19 assessment centre.        

  • It is strongly encouraged that you list the Conestoga Medical Care Clinic as your family physician on the assessment centre intake form. 
    • Address: Conestoga College ITAL Medical Care Clinic, 299 Doon Valley Drive, Kitchener, ON N2G 4M4
    • Phone: 519-748-5220, ext. 3679 | Fax: 519-748-3509.
  • While you are waiting for your test results, keep isolating yourself from others during the first 14-days of self-isolation/quarantine. For more information, refer to You were tested for COVID-19: What you should know.

Step 4: What if I test positive for COVID-19?

  • Inform anyone who you were in close physical contact within the 48 hours before your symptoms began to monitor their health and self-isolate.
  • If you are not feeling well or test positive for COVID-19, please refrain from entering any of the Conestoga College campuses.
  • If you have tested positive, inform the Conestoga Medical Care Clinic and the International Transition Coordinator Team. Our team members will reach out to you for support and help connect you to resources.
Mandatory COVID-19 testing

Non-vaccinated travellers

Non-vaccinated travellers need to complete two mandatory COVID-19 tests:

  1. On-arrival test: This test is completed at the airport when you arrive in Canada.
  2. Day-8 test: You will receive a testing kit at the airport to take home with you and complete on your 8th day of quarantine.

Students must complete a COVID-19 test on the 8th day of their quarantine. You can complete this test using the kit provided to you at the airport when you arrived in Canada. There will be instructions included in the kit to help you.

When you receive your test results, you must submit them to Conestoga College through the iCent app under “Mandatory Forms”.

Negative test result: If your test result is negative, you are not required to do anything further. 

Positive test result: If your test result is positive, specific instructions will be provided by a Public Health authority. A member from the Student Health and Wellness team at Conestoga College will also reach out to see how you are doing and what you might need.

Our nurses, nurse practitioners, counsellors and doctors are here to support your health and well-being. If you have any concerns about your physical and/or mental health, please email Conestoga Medical Care Clinic to book an appointment.

Fully vaccinated travellers

Fully vaccinated travellers do not need to complete an on-arrival COVID-19 test unless they are randomly selected at the border to do so. Read more about exemptions for fully vaccinated travellers

Additional links/resources

Please see the following additional resources as you transition into our local community: 

Regional updates of COVID-19:

For up-to-date FAQs and COVID-19 information, please visit our college website.

4. Welcome to Conestoga

Attend your Orientation

New international students: visit Orientation for details on the program orientation schedule and a checklist to get you ready to begin your studies at Conestoga.   

Connect with the International Team

Join our International team for International transition webinars and transition talks. You are invited to participate. Check out our list of workshops

Book an appointment with an International Transition Coordinator directly through the Student Success Portal.

You can follow on our social media channels to stay connected with news, activities and events related to international students: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube.   

Attend college events

Connect with our college community using the Co-Curricular Portal. Check out the opportunities at Conestoga College.    

Connect with Student Success Services

Visit Student Success Services for all your health & wellness, academic learning, and career advice needs. A great way to get connected to help is through a Student Success Advisor. Fill out our online help form and an advisor will connect with you.    

Looking for a quick overview of services available to help you? Check out our interactive service map (pdf).    

Disclaimer: The information on this page is based on current information. We will update the information as deemed necessary and in accordance with Public Health authorities.