First Year International & Exchange Students

Plane flying in sky.

Welcome to Your Home Away from Home

If you’ve come from outside Canada to attend the University, living in residence will make your experience both easier and more rewarding. You’ll live in the midst of our learning community, close to everything you need.

All new incoming international first-year students and exchange students are eligible to apply if you meet the following criteria:

  • full-time
  • attending in semester one
  • in an undergraduate program

To make sure you get a spot, your application and deposit must be received by the Residence Admissions office by the June 1st deadline.

When you are ready, go to the HOUSING PORTAL.

There are several methods of paying the deposit that are available to all students. As an international student without a Canadian bank account, you will automatically be prompted to pay the $750 deposit in your Residence Application using a credit card. To arrange an alternate payment method, please contact


Arriving Early or Late

Please make your travel arrangements as close to your check-in date as possible.  We understand that international travel schedules may not align with your check-in date and you may require accommodation earlier than the official residence opening date. Once we send you your location assignment, you will be able to submit an Early Arrival Request form through the Housing Portal.  If you are arriving early to attend START International and plan to arrive the day before the event starts, you do not require an Early Arrival Request form.  


If You Need to Arrive Late

If you will be arriving in Guelph after the first day of class, please notify Residence Admissions of your late arrival date. Otherwise, if you have not checked in, we may assume that you are not coming and assign your room to someone else.


Residence Closing Between Semesters

The residence buildings are normally locked and closed during the weeks between the final first semester exams in December and the beginning of classes in January. You are expected to vacate your residence room within 24 hours of completion of your final exam. If you are writing an exam in the final time slot, you are required to leave no later than noon on the residence closing date.

You may leave your personal belongings in your residence room if you are returning to that room in January.


If You Need to Stay Between Semesters

If you are not able to return home and need a place to stay during this time between the fall and winter semesters, please let Student Housing know as soon as possible. We are sometimes able to arrange for rooms in one residence to be available for students in this situation. This can’t be guaranteed, however, and there will be an additional cost for this arrangement.