5 Cheapest Universities for International Students in Canada

Canada has some of the best universities in the world! Universities like McGill and the University of Toronto have consistently ranked among the top post-secondary institutions across the globe. According to World University Rankings, more than 30 Canadian universities are among the world’s top universities.

Additionally, Canada has grown in popularity as a study-abroad destination for students from countries throughout the world. According to the IRCC monthly reports, 2020 saw 220,215 international student applications approved, 555,332 in 2021, and 737,643 in 2022. In the first quarter of 2023, 196,640 study visa applications have already been approved.

Canada has developed into a nation with high expectations and a high reputation thanks to its excellent colleges, vibrant student cities, and well-organized lifestyle. It’s no wonder so many want to study in Canada. However, university can become expensive. That is why we have compiled a list of the top 5 universities with some of the lowest tuition fees in Canada for international students.

What are the Cheapest Universities in Canada for International Students?

What are the Cheapest Universities in Canada for International Students?

University of Calgary

The University of Calgary, located in Alberta, is one of the top universities in Canada. With 14 faculties and 85 research institutes and centers, it offers a wide range of academic programs.

Why Study Here?

UCalgary is known for its affordability and quality education. UCalgary has relatively lower tuition fees than other top universities in Canada. It ranks 242nd globally according to QS rankings and boasts a 94% employment rate after graduation.

Fees & Scholarships

The average undergraduate tuition fee at UCalgary is CAD 24,408, while graduate tuition ranges from CAD 8,243 to CAD 21,597. This is one of the lowest tuition fees for international students in Canada. The university also offers various scholarships for international students, including the University of Calgary International Entrance Scholarship and CIBC International Entrance Scholarship.

Admission Requirements

To be eligible for undergraduate enrollment, students must complete the standard 12 board examination or an equivalent qualification. English language proficiency tests such as TOEFL or IELTS are also required.

Courses Offered & Admission Process

UCalgary offers a wide range of programs, including B.A., B.Sc., M.A., M.Sc., MBA, M.Eng., and Ph.D. Interested students can apply online through the UCalgary website by submitting the necessary documents and paying the application fee.

University of Guelph

The University of Guelph, established in 1964 in Guelph, Ontario, is a public research university with seven main faculties offering diverse courses.

Why Study Here?

Ranked among the top 50 research universities in Canada, UGuelph is particularly renowned for its veterinary and agricultural sciences programs. It offers over 100 different graduate programs and fosters a personalized learning environment.

Fees & Scholarship

The average total fees for a BSc or BA program at UGuelph is approximately CAD 32,000. The university provides numerous scholarships, including the Dr. Franco J. Vaccarino President's Scholarship and the International Entrance Scholarships.

Admission Requirements

Eligibility criteria for undergraduate applicants include completion of class 12 with a minimum average score and English language proficiency as measured by IELTS, TOEFL, or other recognized tests.

Courses Offered & Admission Process

UGuelph offers 94 undergraduate degrees, 48 graduate and doctoral programs, and 6 associate degrees. Students can apply online by submitting the required documents and paying the application fee.

University of Manitoba

The University of Manitoba, founded in 1877 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, is the first university in Western Canada. It is known for its research and contributions in various fields.

Why Study Here?

The University of Manitoba offers a supportive learning environment and a strong academic excellence reputation. It is a research-intensive institution with many programs and opportunities for students to engage in hands-on research projects. The university is also known for its commitment to Indigenous education and has a strong Indigenous community on campus. Additionally, the University of Manitoba provides access to state-of-the-art facilities and resources, including libraries, laboratories, and sports facilities.

Fees & Scholarships

The University od Mantioba also has one of the lowest tuition fees for international students in Canada. The undergraduate tuition fees at the University of Manitoba vary depending on the program and course load. On average, the annual tuition fee for Canadian students is around CAD 7,000, while international students can expect to pay around CAD 18,000 per year. The university offers several scholarships and financial aid options to support students in their studies, including entrance scholarships, merit-based scholarships, and bursaries.

Admission Requirements

Eligibility criteria for undergraduate programs at the University of Manitoba typically include high school completion or an equivalent qualification. International students must also demonstrate English language proficiency through tests like IELTS or TOEFL.

Courses Offered & Admission Process

The University of Manitoba offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs across various disciplines, including arts, sciences, engineering, business, health sciences, and more. Prospective students can apply online through the university's website and must submit their academic transcripts, test scores, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement. The admission process also considers factors such as extracurricular activities and community involvement.

University of Saskatchewan

Located in Saskatoon in Saskatchewan, the University of Saskatchewan (USask) is a public research university that has existed since 1907. It is a U15 group of Canadian research universities member and began as an agricultural college. USask is home to the Canadian Light Source synchrotron, one of the largest and most innovative investments in Canadian science.

Why Study Here?

Ranked 473rd in the world by QS Rankings, the University of Saskatchewan provides practical hands-on experience through internships and co-op programs during study. As a relatively smaller university, it provides high student support. It is also the alma mater of notable figures such as John Diefenbaker, the 13th Prime Minister of Canada, Henry Taube, winner of the 1983 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, and William McIntyre, former justice of the Supreme Court of Canada.

Fees & Scholarship

For international students, the average tuition fee ranges from CAD19,130 to CAD30,060, with certain programs like Law or Nursing priced higher between CAD40,000 to CAD55,000. The university offers various scholarship options for international students, including the University of Saskatchewan International Excellence Awards, International Baccalaureate (IB) Excellence Awards, USask Bridging Scholarship Awards, Canadian Curriculum Schools Awards, Council of International School Awards, and Maple Leaf International School Awards.

Admission Requirements

For an undergraduate degree, applicants must have completed class 12 with the required courses and achieved a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 or a TOEFL score of 86. For a master's program, a four-year undergraduate degree or equivalent is required, along with a minimum IELTS score of 6.5.

Courses Offered & Admission Process

The University of Saskatchewan offers over 200 programs across disciplines, ranging from accounting, Aboriginal studies, biochemistry, and computer science to women's studies at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels. Prospective students can access the entire list of programs on the university's website and apply for their desired programs, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria. The application fee is CAD90.

Memorial University of Newfoundland

Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) was founded in 1925 as a living memorial to Newfoundlanders and Labradorians who died in the First World War. It is a public university with its main campus in St. John's, with additional campuses in Corner Brook, Saint Pierre, and Harlow. The motto of this Canadian college in Latin is "Provehito in Altum," which translates to "Launch forth into the deep."

Why Study Here?

Ranked 751-800 in QS World University Rankings for 2023, Memorial University of Newfoundland offers unique programs to over 19,000 students from 115 countries. MUN provides certificate, diploma, undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate courses across five campuses and online. Due to its location in Atlantic Canada, the university is recognized as one of the top research universities for Ocean studies, Marine Engineering, and Naval engineering.

Fees & Scholarship

The average tuition fee for international students at Memorial University of Newfoundland is CAD11,460, making it one of the low-fee colleges in Canada. The university also offers international scholarships, including the Memorial University of Newfoundland International Entrance Scholarship, IUGS Entrance Scholarship for Undergraduate Students, Fortis Inc. - H. Stanley Marshall Scholarship, Killam American Undergraduate Scholarship, Don and Mona Dooley (OLOF) Thailand Scholarship, and Shona Perry-Maidment Entrance Award.

Admission Requirements

For undergraduate applications, applicants must have completed Class 12 from any recognized board with the required subjects (English, Maths, Science, Social Studies/Modern Classical Language, and an elective). They must have achieved a minimum score of 60 in CAEL or 6.5 in IELTS.

Courses Offered & Admission Process

Memorial University of Newfoundland offers over 100 undergraduate programs across Newfoundland and Labrador, abroad, and online. Prospective students can access the entire list of programs on the university's website. The application fee for any course is CAD$120, and applicants must submit their transcripts and other required documents.

5 Cheapest Colleges in Canada For International Students

5 Cheapest Colleges in Canada For International Students

Discovering affordable educational opportunities in Canada is crucial for international students. We understand the distinction between universities and colleges, so we've curated a list featuring institutions that offer the cheapest tuition fees for international students in Canada. Join us as we explore these budget-friendly colleges, providing excellent value for your education in Canada.

Bow Valley College

Established in 1965 as a community institution, Bow Valley College is located in downtown Calgary, Alberta. It has branch campuses in Airdrie, Banff, Canmore, Cochrane, High River, Okotoks, and Strathmore. With a student population of 17,000, Bow Valley College is known for its affordability.

Ranked 101 among the top colleges in Canada, Bow Valley College excels in applied research projects. The college focuses on competency-based education, ensuring graduates meet industry standards. Tuition fees for diploma and certificate courses range from CAD18,000 to CAD35,000. International students can explore entrance and in-course scholarship options, including the CEA Diploma Scholarship.

Eligibility requirements vary by program, but a minimum language proficiency score of 6.0 in IELTS is expected.

Bow Valley College offers a wide range of courses across specialized schools, including the Chiu School of Business, the School of Continuing Learning, the School of Community Studies, the School of Technology, the School of Foundational Learning, the School of Global Access, and the School of Health and Wellness.

Humber College

Humber College, officially known as the Humber Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning, is in central Toronto. Established in 1967, it has two main campuses: Humber North and Lakeshore.

With over 150 programs in bachelor's degrees, diplomas, certificate courses, postgraduate certificate courses, and apprenticeship programs, Humber College offers diverse opportunities. The college is known for its pathway programs that guide students into specialized degrees with clear career paths. Annual fees for international students range from CAD12,000 to 22,000, depending on the course. Numerous scholarship options are available.

Eligibility requirements include a minimum score of 70% in Class 12 exams (ICSE/CBSE or State Board), and a minimum IELTS score of 6.0.

Humber College offers over 100 programs, including B.E/B. Tech, graduate certificates in Business Administration, Arts and Media Design, Nursing, Pharmaceutical Management, and Hospitality and Travel courses.

Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology

Established in 1967, Algonquin College is a Polytechnics Canada member located in Ottawa. It offers over 200 bachelor's degrees, undergraduate diplomas, postgraduate diplomas, and certificate programs.

Algonquin College provides a student-oriented atmosphere, multicultural ethos, and applied practical on-campus training. The college offers a variety of scholarships for international students, such as the Arnold Smith Royal Commonwealth Society Scholarship, David Phillipe Duguay Scholarship for Academic Achievement, Gary Neville Memorial Scholarship, and more. Tuition fees for international students range from CAD16,000 to CAD22,000.

Eligibility requirements vary by program. A Class 12 certificate with a minimum of 60% and an IELTS score of 6.0 are required for certificate or diploma programs. A minimum overall mark of 65% in Class 12 and an academic IELTS score of 6.5 are necessary for a bachelor's degree.

Algonquin College offers many programs, including Business Management, Apprenticeships and Trades, Teacher Training, Applied Business Technology, Aircraft Maintenance Engineering, and more.

Northern Lights College

Located in British Columbia, Northern Lights College is known for its affordability and applied practical college learning. The college offers courses that allow students to apply for a Postgraduate Work Permit upon completion.

Tuition fees for international students range from CAD10,900 to CAD18,556 per year. Northern Lights College provides general and program-specific awards to international students. The college offers programs such as Business Management, Apprenticeships and Trades, Teacher Training, Applied Business Technology, and more.

Eligibility requirements include high school graduation and a minimum IELTS score of 6.0 for bachelor's level programs and 6.5 for master's level programs.

Conestoga College

Conestoga College, located in the Ontario province, is known for its applied research opportunities and a wide range of programs.

Tuition fees for international students range from CAD10,500 to CAD12,000 per annum. Conestoga College offers international and regional scholarships based on merit, along with the Narhari Sharma Memorial Award for international students.

Eligibility requirements vary by program, but a high school education is required. Additionally, a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 is necessary.

Conestoga College offers over 300 programs, including Applied Computer Science & Information Technology, Business, Community Services, Creative Industries, Engineering & Technology, Health & Life Sciences, and Hospitality & Culinary Arts.

While exploring these affordable colleges in Canada for international students, it's essential to consider the specific programs, eligibility requirements, and scholarship opportunities that align with your educational goals. Each college offers unique strengths and opportunities for students to excel in their chosen fields of study.

Student Costs

Student Costs

While somewhat more than those in nations like the United Kingdom, the USA, or Australia, tuition costs at Canadian colleges are often lower. The cost to study in Canada changes every year, and variations may be seen depending on the city or degree program. For instance, Newfoundland institutions charge the least in tuition, whereas Ontario is the most costly province.

Tuition fees fluctuate between universities and within institutions. Some study programs are more expensive than others. Before you choose a university to study in, consider all your options.

Because more expensive programs only sometimes offer a greater quality of education, you are not required to select the most expensive ones. Find the ideal balance between your finances, tuition, and your desired outcomes from your study program. There are many Designated Learning Institutions to choose from.

Scholarships for International Students in Canada

Scholarships are non-repayable cash awards that international students can use to assist finance their studies in Canada. They are often given to students who have demonstrated exceptional academic accomplishment. However, some also honor volunteer and professional experience. Some scholarships require an application, while others are given out independently. Here are some tips on finding a scholarship:

  1. Look into scholarships and other funding options in their country of origin
  2. Contact the financial aid department of the university you want to attend to learn more about international student scholarships and any application requirements.
  3. Find information about the scholarships offered by not-for-profit institutions, private foundations, and Canada's federal and provincial governments.

Student Living Costs

How much money you spend on living costs as a student will depend on where you live. Living costs in cities, like anywhere else worldwide, are higher than in suburbs. Many students prefer on-campus housing, which is not always the most affordable but undeniably more convenient. With such a scarcity of affordable homes in Toronto, prices are relatively high and continue to rise.

Because the cost of living varies by city and school location, the best-estimated living expense will be determined by the university to which you are applying. As previously stated, each college estimates fees and living expenses in Canada. Some colleges offer reasonable and affordable on-campus boarding options, while others charge quite a bit. You should always be aware of how much it costs to study in Canada

Why Study in Canada?

Why Study in Canada?

There are many benefits to studying in Canada! For example:

Learning New Languages

Although English and French are official languages in Canada and have equal status, you can easily survive in Canada by speaking and communicating in English. However, in Canada, you can take advantage of the opportunity to learn or brush up on your French language skills.

Highest Quality of Education

Many of the world's top universities are located in Canada. Canada is well-known for its stellar academic reputation. Canadian universities have a long history and reputation for academic excellence and high graduate employability rates. In fact, many Canadian higher education institutions compete for students with world-renowned universities in the United States and the United Kingdom.

A Welcoming and Multicultural Environment

With more than half of the population not speaking English as their first language, Canada is one of the world's most ethnically and linguistically diverse countries. Each year, over 120,000 international students study in Canada. You will be surrounded by a large multicultural environment in classrooms and society. This gives any foreigner a significant advantage, allowing you to adapt and make friends easily.

Live in a Safe Environment

With a low crime rate, Canada is one of the safest countries in the world. According to Global News, Canada has the world's second-highest quality of life regarding social progress and development.

Getting a Study Permit

Here is a brief outline on how to get a study permit. Follow the link for more information on how to study in Canada

  • Step 1: Check eligibility
  • Step 2: Get a Letter of acceptance from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI)
  • Step 3: Gather important documents like passport, proof of finances, and letter of explanation
  • Step 4: Pay the application fees and apply online

Make sure you prepare for your travels accordingly.However, when you’re ready to apply for a study permit to study at one of the Cheapest Universities for International Students in Canada, be sure to reach out to us and get into contact with a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC). An RCIC is an expert in all kinds of visas for Canada. They’ll assist you in the process and ensure you can study in Canada by getting a valid study permit.


Is University in Canada Expensive for Foreigners?

In comparison to other popular study destinations, studying in Canada is more affordable. To cover tuition, depending on the course and city, expect to pay more than Canadians. Aside from that, food, living, and other living expenses will cost around CAD10,000. When compared to other popular study-abroad destinations, such as the US, where you would expect to pay over US$35,000 on average for tuition, this is quite affordable.

Can I Work and Study in Canada?

One of the major benefits of studying in Canada is being able to apply for a work permit. If registered at a full-time institution, you may work up to 20 hours a week. This can help you pay for your extra expenses and living costs while living in Canada. If you need a student job in Canada, here’s a breakdown at the nation’s top part-time jobs.

Can I Stay in Canada After I Graduate?

You can stay in Canada after you graduate in various ways. The most common way is to apply for a Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP), which allows you to work in Canada for a between 8 months and 3 years, depending on how many years you studied at an eligible school in Canada