It is important to consult the academic calendar before you book your air ticket. Not only must you arrive in time for the start of classes, you also have to ensure that your stay covers the entire exam period. If you plan on returning home during the end-of-year holiday season, you’re advised to book your ticket well in advance, since it’s a very high-demand travel time.
As a new international student at Polytechnique, you’re also required to attend certain information sessions. These sessions are held before the start of classes. See Step 4 Orientation and Integration activities to find out about the dates. You are also invited to attend the information session held by your study program.
|Fall 2017||Winter 2018|
|Start of classes||August 28||January 8|
|Labour Day (Holiday, no class)||September 4||-|
|Thanksgiving (Holiday, no class)||October 9||-|
|Reading week (no class)||October 7 to 13||March 5 to 11|
|Easter (Holiday, no class)||-||March 30 to April 2|
|Exam period||December 7 to 22||April 19 to May 4|
|End of courses/exams||December 22||May 4|
To ease into the adaptation process, aim to arrive at least two weeks before the start of classes (mid-August for Fall admissions, late December/early January for Winter admissions). You will have to find a place to live and there will be a number of administrative procedures to complete. You should also never underestimate culture shock: even for very good students, adapting to a new educational environment in a new country takes time.
Before you book your ticket, check with your airline about the maximum number of suitcases and baggage weight per person. You might also want to ask about the excess baggage surcharge. When you’re packing for a journey that will last months, it’s easy to exceed your weight limits!
For faster customs check-in at Montreal airport, register as of mid-May 2017 for airport welcome service.