Canada's Cost Of Living Requirements International students | IRCC's Updates for Study Permit Applicants 2024


In a significant move, the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced changes to the cost-of-living requirement for study permit applicants, effective January 1, 2024. The adjustment aims to align financial criteria with the current cost of living in Canada, addressing concerns about students arriving with insufficient funds. As we delve into the details, let's explore the implications, the reasoning behind the decision, and the additional updates shared by the IRCC.

Changes to Cost-of-Living Requirement: What You Need to Know

Starting January 1, 2024, the cost-of-living requirement for a single study permit applicant will be $20,635. This substantial increase, more than double the previous requirement of $10,000 set in the early 2000s, accounts for living expenses beyond tuition and travel costs. IRCC acknowledges the necessity for this adjustment, emphasizing that the previous financial guidelines no longer accurately reflected the current Canadian cost of living.

To address potential fluctuations in living expenses, the department will now annually update the cost-of-living requirement based on Statistics Canada's low-income cut-off (LICO). This measure aims to ensure that individuals in Canada can meet their basic needs without a disproportionate portion of their income being allocated to essential expenses.

The new financial guidelines will also be applied to the Student Direct Stream (SDS), a study permit stream known for its faster processing time. While IRCC anticipates that these changes will enhance student protection, it acknowledges that individual impacts may vary. In response, the department plans to implement targeted pilots in the coming year to assist underrepresented cohorts of international students pursuing studies in Canada.

Extended Working Hours and PGWP Updates

In addition to the cost-of-living adjustments, IRCC has extended the waiver on the 20-hour per week work limit for international students until April 30, 2024. Eligible students include those already in Canada and those who submitted a study permit application as of December 7, 2023. This measure, introduced in November 2022, offers students the flexibility to work more than the standard 20 hours per week during the academic session.

Furthermore, Minister Miller announced two crucial updates regarding the Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). The provision allowing students to count online study terms towards their future PGWP, with a limit of half the total program time, will be extended until September 1, 2024. However, there will be no further special extensions beyond this date. Individuals eligible under the most recent extension policy, with work permits expiring by December 31, 2023, may apply, but IRCC will not seek additional PGWP extensions after this period.

Stay tuned for more updates and detailed insights on navigating these changes in the Canadian study landscape. Subscribe to our channel to stay informed about crucial immigration developments.

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Welcome to Immigrate With Ammy blog space. As an immigrant, I have a firsthand experience of the hurdles that people face when taking a decision about relocation and this blog is born out of a desire to provide support to such people. Here, you will find useful and updated information on travel, immigration, study abroad, and job recruitment in countries such as Australia, the UK, New Zealand, Canada, Portugal, and others. I have a lot of video resources on my YouTube channel (Immigrate With Ammy) and you can also join my Twitter community by following me on @AmmyWith and on Facebook by following Immigrate With Ammy.

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