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New International Students

International Student Pre-Arrival Guides

These guides include lots of important information on what to expect when preparing for your arrival and for your transition to life in Canada and at the University of Guelph.

International Student Pre-Arrival Resources

In addition to the Pre-Arrival Guide, we encourage you to check out the International Student Pre-Arrival Resources for more information and resources that can help you better prepare for your arrival in Canada! Login with your U of G email to access International Student Pre-Arrival Resources.

Pre-Arrival Communications

START U of G Emails

Fall Admission: In June, you will begin to receive our weekly START U of G emails which highlight important pre-arrival supports, tips on how to get prepared for coming to Canada, and how to connect with other students

Winter Admission: The information noted above will be sent to you starting in November.

Summer Admission: The information noted above will be sent to you starting from March

Email Communication

Check your University of Guelph email address ( regularly. After the initial welcome email, all communication from the university will be sent to your university email address. It is important to check this often to avoid missing out on important information and engagement opportunities at the university.

Important note: You will be prompted to set up Multifactor Authentication (MFA) the first time you access your "" email account. We strongly recommend using the Microsoft Authenticator App as your default additional authentication method, as this is the most secure and convenient option. We do not recommend using your phone number as the ONLY authentication method as you may not be able to access this number at all times (for example, while travelling). During your first time setting up the MFA, make sure to uncheck the check box that says, "Allow my organization to manage my device". Instead, please choose, "No, sign in to this app only". 

If you have already set up MFA with your phone number, we strongly recommend that you switch to using the Microsoft Authenticator App by following these step-by-step instructions.

If you are experiencing issues with your email, or single sign on, you can visit the IT Help website

Exchange Students

If you are an exchange student, you will receive all your information from Education Abroad Advisors at the Centre for International Programs. Please contact the Centre for International Programs if you have any questions (


As an international student, you are not only coming to a new learning institution but an entirely new country. This means there is more to think about in terms of your transition to life at the University. The University of Guelph provides orientation specifically for international students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

START International

START International is an orientation program for new international students, new permanent residents to Canada, new exchange students and out-of-country Canadians. The program will introduce you to the campus environment, the resources available to aid in your social and academic transition, and what you can expect from your University of Guelph experience. Attendance is highly recommended as the sessions will cover useful information on topics such as cultural adjustment, the Canadian university academic system, health insurance, professional development, and other support services that can help students make successful transitions.

Fall Semester start: START International Orientation for students starting classes in the Fall Semester is held in late August / early September (the week before classes begin for the fall semester, or the Wednesday before the weekend of Move-In Day). 

Winter Semester start: START International normally takes place the Sunday before the first day of classes.

For further information, login and visit the START International page on the Student Experience intranet.

Graduate Student Orientation

This event provides the opportunity for all new graduate students to learn more about what it means to be a graduate student, receive tips on how to succeed in graduate school, become aware of services available on campus and meet other students. Orientation is typically held in the first week of the semester in which you begin your studies.

Make sure you stay tuned to your email, the Graduate Studies website and the Graduate Studies Facebook page for more details. Look out for information about this from your Graduate Program Assistant. Contact Graduate and Post-Doctoral Studies for more information.

For Fall 2024, Campus Move-in Days are August 30 to August 31. However, students who are registered for the START International Orientation are allowed to move into residence free of charge starting on August 27, which is the day before the orientation program begins. If you are registered for START International and are arriving on August 27, you do not need to submit the Early Arrival Request Form because we will let the Residence office know that you are moving in early. Please note that you must sign in at the registration desk for START International on every day of the orientation in order to not be charged extra for residence.

If you are attending START International and if you plan to arrive and move-in before August 27, you will be considered an early arrival and will be billed $40 every night until August 27 (the day before START International Orientation begins), and you must submit the Early Arrival Request form.

Please see the move-in information above and plan your flight accordingly. If you plan to fly home for the winter break, make sure you check when the residence closes on Student Housing Website.

You may participate in START International whenever your flight arrives, even if it is in the middle of the orientation week, as long as you have registered. Please see above for early move-in information.

No, START International 2024 is free. However, not all meals are provided (details will be released to START International registrants in the digital program closer to the orientation), and students should budget $10-$15 per meal.

Although cafeteria options are limited at the end of August, they will fully reopen in September. There are also many off-campus options nearby. Please see this webpage for more information about food options.

For information on how to get to Guelph from the airport, refer to this page. For information on public transit in Guelph, refer to this page. Please note that your bus pass for the Fall 2024 semester will not be active until September 1, so you will have to pay for bus fare if you arrive before September. For information on how to pay, see the Guelph Transit website.

Important Deadlines

Deadlines in Canada are strict and it is important that you do not miss any of them. Below is a list of some of the important dates and major deadlines to be aware of as an undergraduate or graduate student. Remember to check your University of Guelph email address to stay connected and informed about upcoming deadlines!

Native American, Alaskan Native, or Native Hawaiian Students

The University of Guelph honours the Jay Treaty of 1794. If you possess a Native American, Alaskan Native, or Native Hawaiian citizenship document from tribes that are state or federally recognized, or an Indian Status card from the government of Canada, you will be eligible for domestic tuition. Documentation must be presented to qualify. Undergraduate students submit the documentation to Enrolment Services. Graduate students submit the documentation to Graduate & Postdoctoral Program Services. Please contact Global Pre-Arrival Support Advisor and the Indigenous Student Advisor to ensure that you are connected to the supports available to you.


Have questions? Connect with our Global Pre-Arrival Support Advisor or International Student Advisors. Find out who your advisor is.

If you are an exchange students, please contact the Centre for International Programs at