As an international student, you may invite your spouse or common law partner, children or parents to join you in Canada. Any accompanying family members must apply for a visitor's visa.
Applying for a Visitor's Visa for Family
Before you leave your home country, your family member(s) may apply for a Visitor's Visa at an embassy or consulate outside Canada. This can be done at the same time that you are applying for your Study Permit. Please contact your nearest Canadian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate to apply.
If you are already in Canada studying and wish to invite your family member(s) to join you, you can support their Visitor’s Visa application by sending the following documents:
1. Letter of Invitation
You can write a letter of invitation on your family member's behalf. Be sure to include the following information:
- Your relative’s name (in English and in your language, if the script of your native language is different), plus their address and telephone number.
- Your relative’s date of birth.
- Your name, address and telephone number (home and office) in Canada.
- An invitation to your relative to join you in Canada and information about how long you wish him/ her/ them to remain (i.e., for a short visit or until you leave).
2. Your Current Status Documents
- A copy of your study permit.
- A copy of your work permit (if you have one).
- A copy of the information from the University about the expected duration of your program.
3. Information about Financial Support (required only if inviting a spouse or children):
- A copy of bank statements covering several months.
- A letter describing any scholarship you may have and specifying the amount.
- A letter indicating the amount you will be paid for any job you have.
- A letter from a sponsor (and, if this is an Individual, information about their financial circumstances).
- Documents describing any other source of financial support you have.
Although your spouse is eligible to apply for a work permit and may look for work upon arrival in Canada, immigration will not take into consideration the possibility of this additional income when assessing financial support.
Note: Immigration guidelines on financial support suggest the following amounts (per year): $10 000 for a student, plus $4 000 for a spouse and $3 000 for each child.
Visa Processing Time
The processing time will depend upon the workload of the office at which the application has been submitted. Many other cases have a higher priority than visitors (e.g., refugees, family sponsored immigrants, etc.), so this process is likely to take somewhat longer than you might expect. For processing time information specified by country, please see the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website.
For more information, please visit the Citizenship and Immigration Canada website.
Did you know?
In Canada, same-sex couples can legally marry and have full legal and constitutional rights.