How to Prepare for your Canadian Visa Interview

After submitting your student visa application, you can schedule a date for your visa interview. The interview is the last step of the application process, and it is crucial in determining whether your visa is approved or not. You will have to meet one or two visa officers who will ask questions based on you application, related to your study program, institute, family background, and financial background. They will also ask you if you are planning to stay in Canada after completing your studies, or returning to your home country.

Arrive early at the embassy for your interview and greet the officers enthusiastically. Keep a positive mind, even if they ask difficult questions. Your purpose to stay in Canada is to get a degree, so make sure to emphasize that during the interview.

Keep documents ready at hand

The last thing you want to do at the interview location is scramble to find documents if the interviewing officer asks for any, then realizing you didn’t make enough copies of them. Keep these documents ready in a folder for easy access:

  • Transcripts, certificates, and any awards from school
  • Acceptance letter from the Canadian academic institute
  • Bank statement or scholarship letter making it clear how you will fund your studies
  • Proof of employment for your parents
  • Letters from your future employers in your home country (if you have an agreement with them)
  • Business card, if you are currently working
  • Any other documents you have submitted for your visa application that could help the interview officers to get a view of your profile

Sometimes the officers won’t ask for any documents, sometimes they might. It’s difficult to guess how picky or relaxed the officers would be at the time of your interview. Thus, it is best to be prepared with 1-2 copies of these documents in case they do ask. Also, be familiar with all the information presented in your application and supplementary documents.

Be honest

It is also very important to be truthful and sincere about your grades, past employment, hobbies, etc. The purpose of the interview is to screen any students who don’t show that their primary purpose to get the student visa is to study. If the officers find that your information doesn’t match up, or that you aren’t serious about the interview or your studies, that’s a red flag for them. If you don’t understand a question being asked, it is best not to answer it in the first attempt, rather, request the officer to rephrase the question.

Practice answering questions beforehand

Ask a friend, parent, or academic counsellor to simulate the interview to help you gain confidence in answering questions and looking presentable. Writing down your answers or some notes on a paper also helps with remembering, which you can read out loud for feedback from your friend or relative. Just make sure not to memories the answers otherwise you will sound robotic in front of the visa officers.