What Is GIC Canada For International Students? Learn Now

Written by

Alisha Azeem

Fact check by

Afreen Abbasi

Updated on

Jul 25,2024

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Moving to a foreign country for your education can be a huge change, and can exhaust many of your financial resources. Thankfully, Canada, one of the leading study-abroad destinations in the world, is quite mindful of this. Being sensitive to student finances, they have something known as a ‘GIC’. Now, what is GIC Canada for international students? GIC stands for Guaranteed Investment Certificate. Every international student coming to Canada for their higher education needs to hold a GIC certificate. GIC Canada for international students is a mandate. Now you must be wondering - what is GIC Canada for international students? What is GIC amount in Canada for international students? We have got you covered. 

What Is GIC Canada for International Students?

GIC, short for Guaranteed Investment Certificate, is a Canadian investment for international students for a fixed period. It has a guaranteed return attached to it. 

To qualify for a Canadian study permit or study visa, you must have enough funds to support your stay for at least a year and demonstrate proof of the same. They must deposit this money with a Canadian banking institution and avail a GIC from them. 

Is It Mandatory To Have A GIC? Use Of GIC Canada For International Students?

Yes. For international students- before you ponder upon what is the use of GIC Canada for international students, they must have a GIC with them when they study in Canada. It is a permanent requirement for the following reasons. 

  • GIC Canada for international students is proof of the individual having enough money to support their stay in Canada and cover their living expenses. 

  • Applicants holding a GIC have an advantage when it comes to the study permit - it is processed faster if you have a GIC. 

Now you know what is the use of GIC Canada for international students. It is a very important document for all international students to have. 

Important Things About Use of GIC Canada For International Students 

If you are opening a GIC account, you must keep certain things in mind. These are some factors you should be well-versed in before you consider opening a GIC account. 

  • You should choose a Canadian banking institution that offers GIC and also meets the SDS requirements and standards 

  • You cannot access your GIC account unless you are in Canada. So you must arrive in Canada first to access your GIC account

  • You will have to go through an identity check before being able to access your account 

  • When you access your money, the Canadian institution will release it in two phases - an initial lump sum amount at first and monthly installments over a year  

What Banks Can You Open a GIC Account With?

You can open a GIC account with one of these banks: 

  • SBI Canada

  • ICICI Canada

  • Scotia Bank Canada

All three banks allow you to open an account through online mode, making GIC Canada for international students quite convenient. 

How To Open An Account for GIC Canada For International Students?

Now that we have answered your first question- “What is GIC Canada for International students?” we will answer your second most important question- how do you open this account? 

Follow these simple steps to open a GIC account. 

Step 1: Register with one of the financial institutions that offer GIC accounts. You can open an account online itself. 

Step 2: Sign up for a GIC account. Fill out the application and upload all the important documents. Be very mindful while submitting your information and do not make any mistakes. 

Step 3: Transfer 20,635 CAD (12,71,619 INR) to your GIC account. This is the recommended minimum balance for GIC amount in Canada for international students. You cannot go below it. 

Step 4: Once you open your account and transfer the money, you’re almost done! You will soon receive the certificate, which is the GIC Canada for international students. Your financial institution might also give you some documents like a letter of attestation or a confirmation of your investment balance. 

Step 5: Once you reach Canada, make it a priority to visit your financial institution first. Visit the branch, get your identity verified in person and then you will be able to access your GIC account. 

Types Of GIC Canada For International Students 

There are three different types of GICs that you can open. The use of GIC Canada for international students is different, based on what type of GIC they issue. They are listed below. 

  • Cashable GIC: This does not have a fund lock-in period. You can withdraw your money at any time from this GIC. The use of GIC Canada for international students through the cashable GIC is best for short-term investments. However, this GIC does have a monthly limit on withdrawals. 

  • Non-Cashable GIC: The use of GIC Canada for international students can through this one is best for individuals who wish for a long-term investment. You cannot access your funds until they mature. The rate of return is quite high. 

  • Market Growth GIC: The return rate of GIC amount in Canada for international students differs based on market performance. In this GIC, you can get a minimum guaranteed return as well as an expected profit based on the market performance. 


The GIC is a prerequisite for all international applicants, and students from India are no exception. The GIC also speeds up the process of attaining a student permit. It also guarantees the financial security of the students while they are studying in Canada. Obtaining a GIC is a very easy process. If you need help with the GIC certification or any immigration-related services, Terratern is right here to help!

If you are a student looking for help with your GIC Canada, TerraTern is your one-spot solution for all the details and assistance required for this sort of thing!

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Frequently Asked Questions

What Is GIC amount in Canada for international students?

The GIC amount is 20,635 CAD (12,71,619 INR). It used to be 10,000 CAD but then was amended by the Canadian government in January 2024.

What documents are required for GIC Canada for international students?

You need a copy of your passport, your PAN Card, acceptance letter, and proof of enrollment from the university.

What is the interest rate of GIC?

The rate difference from bank to bank. ICICI Bank offers 1 percent, SBI offers 1.05 percent and Scotia Bank offers somewhere between 0.1 to 1 percent.

What is the Student Direct Stream (SDS) program?

The SDS is a process that allows faster processing of student visa applications for Canada. Only certain countries can use the SDS program for faster visa processing. India is one of them.