Education Abroad: A Post-Pandemic Guide for Indian Students Going Abroad

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Summary

Germany, Canada, US, UK and Singapore reopened for Indian students; Australia has not yet allowed them to enter the continent

A negative COVID-19 report must be presented to airlines before traveling to these study abroad destinations

Education abroad continues to be an attractive proposition for Indian students even during the current pandemic. Based on the quality of education and post-study work opportunities, Germany, Canada, US, UK, Singapore and Australia remain study destinations at the very privileged foreigner. Most of these countries have started accepting international students with varying levels of restrictions. You must now present a negative COVID-19 test result (done within 72 hours of departure) to airlines before traveling to any of these destinations.

Here’s a look at the latest updates regarding vaccine acceptance, flight plans, visa requirements, and part-time employment options in each of these countries:

Germany

The first step is to apply for a national visa, also known as a D visa, which is only valid for 3 months but allows you to enter Germany and apply for a residence permit. Although the permit is valid for 1 year, it can be renewed or extended depending on the length of your course.

International students currently in Germany can search for jobs as teaching assistants, tutors and laboratory assistants.

Since September 19, 2021, Germany has reopened international flights from India. Covishield is the only Indian vaccine accepted in Germany and at least 14 days must have passed since the second dose upon departure.

Find out more here: https://india.diplo.de/in-en/vertretungen/-/2464164

United States

Indian students who have been admitted to a recognized US university for a course starting on or after August 1, 2021, are allowed to visit the country 30 days before the course begins. The United States has issued a record number of student visas (F or M) for Indian students in recent months.

Students with an F1 visa are allowed to work only on campus in positions such as teaching assistant, campus tour guide and library monitor. The rules are strict and any work done illegally can result in eviction.

Flights to the United States are permitted from India. However, only Air India currently operates direct flights between the two countries. Currently, proof of vaccination is not required upon departure or arrival in the United States, and vaccination rules depend on each university. Starting in November, the United States plans to make vaccination (including Covishield) mandatory for travelers entering the country.

Find out more here: https://in.usembassy.gov/visas/

Canada

To study in Canada, students must apply for a study permit to enter the country. Once the permit is approved, they will receive a student visa. Jobs available in Canada for Indian students include those as customer service representatives, delivery people, storekeepers and on-campus research assistants.

Direct flights from India to Canada have resumed since September 27, 2021. Students fully vaccinated with Covishield are exempt from quarantine upon arrival.

Find out more here: https://voyage.gc.ca/destinations/inde#vols

Great Britain

The UK currently issues visas to Indian students, who must apply for a level 4 visa to study there. The country has also removed India from its red list, so flights are currently being operated from India to the UK and back. According to the latest update, Indians who have been fully vaccinated with Covishield or any other UK approved vaccine do not need to quarantine after arriving in Britain from October 11.

The UK government recently introduced the Graduate Study Visa, allowing students to stay in the country and look for work after graduation for at least 2 years. International students with a level 4 visa are allowed to work during the course in different positions such as delivery man, cashier, clerk and library assistant.

Find out more here: https://www.ukcisa.org.uk/Information–Advice/Studying–living-in-the-UK/Coronavirus-Covid-19-info-for-international-students

Australia

Australia does not currently allow Indian students to travel to the mainland, although international flights have started to operate. As a result, Indian students who gained admission to Australian universities this year do not yet have a definitive membership date. The Australian government recently announced that it “is delighted to welcome Indian students” after the approval of Covishield by its health authorities. In terms of employment prospects, international students in Australia work part-time on and off campus for jobs in industries such as retail and grocery stores, courier services, warehouses and cafes.

Find out more here: https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/travel-restrictions

Singapore

To study in Singapore, a student passport is required for which you can apply after receiving a letter of acceptance from any of the 34 universities in Singapore listed as IHL (Institute of Higher Learning). Students can only complete internships approved by the university and related to their course in Singapore. Singapore currently accepts Indian students, but students need additional approval through the SafeTravel online portal. They can only enter Singapore after obtaining permission from the Singapore Immigration Authorities and Ministry of Education. They must also submit a pre-travel health declaration and self-quarantine upon arrival.

Find out more here: https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/arriving/overview

Ajesh Raj is the co-founder and CEO of Edumpus, an educational platform for education abroad. He obtained his MBA in International Studies from De Montfort University, UK.

Last updated on November 22, 2021


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