Vancouver is the third-largest city in Canada and the largest city in the province of British Columbia. Its beautiful location close to the ocean and mountains attracts residents and visitors from all over the world.
Below are some resources to help with transitioning to life in British Columbia and Vancouver:
The guide contains information and videos in a variety of languages. Topics covered include The First Few Days, Transportation, Finding a Place to Live, Money and Banking, Health Care and more.
The city of Vancouver puts together a guide with downloadable resources and Areas of the City sections. Use the navigation map on the Areas page to link to community-specific information including services, news & events.
All BC residents, including international students, are required to have medical coverage through the publically funded BC Medical Services Plan (MSP). There is a three months waiting period for all new residents to BC. During this waiting period, you will be required to have private medical insurance. (Please see "Private Coverage" below.)
The MSP plan covers basic medical services. Please visit Medical Services Plan of B.C. for more details.
During your first three months while you are waiting to be enrolled in the BC Medical Services Plan, you will be required to have private medical insurance. VCC International Education can assist you in purchasing this insurance upon your arrival.
Coverage included basic medical care as well as prescription medication and emergency dental services. For more information on coverage please visit: Health Insurance for International Students
Full-time students in applicable programs are automatically enrolled in the Student Union at VCC’s (SUVCC) Health and Dental Plan. Coverage includes a percentage of dental services, extended health services such as massage, physiotherapy and acupuncture, and also prescription medicines and eyeglasses (vision care). The fee is automatically charged to VCC students’ first fee payment. Visit the SUVCC website for more information.
Note: The SUVCC health and Dental Plan does not cover BC Medical Service Plan premiums.
We encourage international students to experience life with a Canadian family until they become accustomed to their new surroundings. Homestay is a safe and secure choice, providing students with the opportunity to practice English outside the classroom and learn about the Canadian way of life. Liane's Vancouver Homestay places VCC international students with homestay families that provide the following:
Private bedroom with a bed, bedding, dresser, desk, chair, desk lamp, closet
Shared common areas of the house including bathroom, kitchen, and TV room
Use of telephone and laundry facilities
Three meals per day (be sure to check with your Homestay family for exact meal times)
Placement Fee: $290
Homestay Fee: $868 per 28 days
Airport Pickup Fee: $73 + GST
To apply for Liane's Vancouver Homestay:
There are many accommodation options for students in Metro Vancouver. Examples include homestays, furnished and unfurnished rentals in houses, basement suites, condominiums and apartments.
Resources for locating available housing can be found online through Google search:
Other resources include newspapers and local communities: