CECS predep Checklist

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					University of Waterloo – Co-operative Education & Career Services (CECS)                    Winter 2007


International Pre-Departure Checklist
(The following is a suggested list of activities that you should consider. You will need to add and prioritize
accordingly. Use a journal to set out a plan with the logistics of pre-departure preparation.)

• All students should review pre-departure information at UW DepartSmart:
         http://www.cecs.uwaterloo.ca/students/international/departsmart.php

Citizenship

-   Apply for a passport: ensure you have a passport that is valid until at least six months after your return date.
    (plan 3 to 4 weeks for the application process)
-   Arrange for appropriate visas (the process may take several months). Determine if you are able to study and
    work or whether each requires a separate visa. Work visas are available through SWAP/Travel Cuts or Visa
    Sections of the various embassies.
-   Register at the closest Canadian Embassy/Consulate: a complete listing is available in The Canadian Guide
    to Working and Living Overseas and the DFAIT booklet Bon Voyage, Information for the Canadian Traveller
         http://voyage.gc.ca/main/sos/rocapage-en.asp
-   What do you know about Canada and UW? Review your current affairs and be prepared to be a cultural and
    university ambassador.

Academic

-   Make sure to meet all deadlines for registrations and payments for courses at your host university.
-   Meet with your academic advisor prior to your departure. Obtain the advisor's email address, mailing
    address, telephone and fax numbers.
-   If you are in your last academic year and anticipate graduating immediately upon your return, visit the
    Registrar's Office and ensure that your records are in order.
-   Keep in mind that when you enroll in classes on QUEST, the appointment times are set for Eastern
    Standard Time! The (draft) timetable for undergraduate courses at Waterloo is available at
         http://www.adm.uwaterloo.ca/infocour/CIR/SA/under.html
-   Prior to your departure, make sure you have the e-mail address, mailing address, telephone number and fax
    numbers of your employer contact
-   Make two (2) sets of photocopies of all necessary academic documents as well as other key documents e.g.
    identity cards, birth certificate, passport, plane tickets, prescriptions, visas, etc. Take one copy with you and
    leave the other at home with a friend or family member.

Financial

-   Financial Aid: can you continue with your current aid program when you are overseas e.g. OSAP?
-   Clear any debts. (e.g. library, parking, bursaries, etc.)
-   Be sure to plan ahead for filing your income tax.
-   Arrange a Power of Attorney for someone you trust to make bank deposits and transfers, pay credit card
    bills and carry out other legal matters. (Power of Attorney letters are available from the Registrar’s Office)
-   Money: Bring cash ($US and local currency), Traveler’s cheques ($US), and credit cards (optional). Interac
    and other access cards to automatic teller machines are available in most countries – you will pay a service
    fee, but accessing your Canadian account may offer a better currency exchange rate than local banks.
-   Look into the banking norms in your country of destination; where possible, explore the possibility of using
    your existing bank to assist in establishing a bank account with a local bank at your destination. In some
    countries, opening a bank account can be a complicated and lengthy process, so plan ahead.

Health

-   Health and Accident Insurance: are you covered? Adequate insurance is required. What supplemental
    coverage is required? Baggage and trip cancellation insurance is often a wise precaution.
-   If you will be away from Canada for more than 7 months, your OHIP coverage will lapse. At that point
    you are no longer considered to be a resident of Ontario and neither the Provincial Health Plan nor the UW
    Student Supplemental Health Plan will cover you. – in order to have appropriate coverage, you must get
    your OHIP coverage extended for the entire time you will be away by submitting a request in writing to the

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University of Waterloo – Co-operative Education & Career Services (CECS)                Winter 2007

    nearest Ministry of Health office, PRIOR TO DEPARTURE, explaining the purpose of your trip and the
    anticipated return date(an appropriate letter can be obtained from the Registrar’s Office). See:
    http://www.health.gov.on.ca/english/public/pub/ohip/longer.html
-   The UW Student Supplemental Health Plan provides for up to 150 consecutive days of Out-of-Canada
    coverage – if you are using that health plan and will be away for more than that length of time, you must
    purchase an extension to that coverage from the Cashier’s Office PRIOR TO DEPARTURE.
         (see http://www.adm.uwaterloo.ca/infohr/student.html for complete details about the Plan)
-   Visit Health Services or Regional Health Unit to determine the vaccinations required for your destination and
    to develop your immunization schedule (begin at least three months ahead if bound for Asia, Africa or Latin
    America).
-   Make sure to take sufficient prescription medications for the time that you are away. Carry spare glasses
    and lens prescriptions.
-   Health Issues: get a checkup done by your physician and your dentist.
-   Drugs and Alcohol: find out the laws regarding the consumption of alcohol and illegal drugs. Some countries
    execute those caught with illegal drugs!
-   The Travel Clinic: http://www.drwisetravel.com/ (good source of info before and during your travels)
-   International Association for Medical Assistance for Travelers: www.iamat.org

Travel

-   Determine your mailing address overseas before you go.
-   Flight booking: look around for the best deals. Do you want an open-ended ticket giving you a flexible return
    date? What’s the lowest fare available on a particular route on any day of travel? (Travel Cuts)
-   Will your Driver's License expire while you are away? If you are planning to drive while you are abroad, you
    are advised to obtain an International Driver's License before you leave. Do you have appropriate insurance
    coverage for driving your car in a foreign country? Can you use your Canadian Driver’s License for the
    entire time that you will be at your destination?
-   Rail passes: definite money savers for extensive travel (Eurailpass, Japan Rail Pass, etc.) Some of these
    passes must be purchased outside of their respective countries/regions and therefore should be purchased
    prior to departure in order to benefit from cost savings. (Travel Cuts)
-   International Student ID Card makes you eligible for a broad range of discounts overseas.
-   International Youth Hostels Membership Card allows you to stay in hostels all over the world (Travel Cuts)
-   Telephone Card: if you are going to call Canada a lot, you may want to take along an international phone
    card. Check the various long distance companies about the services that allow you to call home at
    Canadian rates.
-   Luggage: take as little as possible. A backpack is easiest to carry and handle on trains and buses. If you
    take a suitcase, be sure it has wheels! Check out voltages in your host country before carting electrical
    devices with you. Take some small gifts for your hosts and photos of your home and family.
-   Guidebooks: Consider buying one(s) geared to your own travel style and itinerary.
-   Do some background reading about the countries you will visit, the people you will see and the cultures you
    will experience. Be aware of gender issues as they pertain to your host culture.
-   Language: Brush up on your foreign language skills and/or buy a phrase book.
-   Travel Reports: http://voyage.gc.ca/dest/ctry/reportpage-en.asp
-   Consular Affairs/Offices: http://www.voyage.gc.ca/consular_home-en.asp

Required Forms:

-   If you have arranged your own job, complete and submit the Job Information form (working outside Canada)
    at http://www.cecs.uwaterloo.ca/students/job_information_form.php - this submission includes the Risk
    management information.
-   If you have accepted a job posted through JobMine, you must complete and submit the online Risk
    Management form separately – this form can be found at
    http://www.cecs.uwaterloo.ca/students/international/form.php.

    * these forms should be completed as soon as you have confirmed your foreign employment




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