To-Do List for International College Applicants for 2024


From students who intended to join their desired program in these years, to ones who had been prepping for years to apply to their dream schools – the pandemic toppled a lot of plans. But soon, universities from all around the world started standing up to support their present and future college/university applicants. With universities taking decisions to waive off test scores and offering webinars for students with queries and apprehensions, students felt secure to apply to their dream universities regardless of the pandemic.

In such situations, admission consultants play a vital role in not only supporting students with their advice and expertise but also by sharing constant updates/changes in information from the governments along with the universities.

Nevertheless, you must always be prepared with your own set of arsenals of necessary information – as, at the end of the day, it’s YOU who would be going abroad to study. Let’s go over a few general points that are applicable to all countries.


To-Do List for International Aspirants

Be Aware of the Documents that You Need

1-Be aware of the documents

You must plan your application process well in advance – pandemic or no pandemic. Abroad education specialists can provide you with a checklist of documents that you will need to gather for your applications. Along with that, look into the university’s or your program’s web page to gather all necessary information. You need to be prepared with your transcripts, tests scores, financial documents, along with your university documents such as your letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, supplemental essays, etc.


Strategise with an Expert

2-Strategise with an expert

Choosing a program or a university where you wish to study is simply not enough. If you choose a university where you think you have a 100% chance of bagging an admit, consult with your admission consultant – you may have a better shot at an even more reputed university. Not only that, while strategizing with your expert consultant, you can even get to know about scholarships that you can avail of.

Covid-19 has had an immeasurable impact on the global admissions of prospective international students. The passing of information has now shifted to expos, online fairs, and virtual visits from U.S. university representatives. Attending these will give you a clear idea of what universities are looking for and whether a university’s program is the right fit for your aspirations.


Focus on Extracurriculars

3-Focus on Extracurriculars

International universities weigh your academic scores along with your extra and co-curricular involvement. While you can sit and study for 15 hours a day to crack in an Indian university’s entrance exam, foreign universities look beyond your academic standing.

Therefore, it’s best to keep your extracurricular experiences enriching as these will not only enhance your soft and interpersonal skills but also make you stand apart from other applicants. Join clubs (science, math or dramatics clubs!) at your school, try to include activities such as remote volunteering, virtual internships and online certifications during the pandemic. You can even think of taking up a new language or a hobby and turn to stay at home into something productive – international universities love students who can turn adversities into opportunities.

Related Blog: Turn Extracurricular Activities into Scholarships

Understand Country-Wise Travel Restrictions

To help you understand the current position of travel allowance and restrictions, we have compiled country-wise travel updates for applicants for the USA, Australia, the UK and Canada.


United States


As per Times Higher Education, in April 2021, the US Secretary of State announced an exemption to Covid-19 travel restrictions for international students beginning from 1 August 2021.

The national interest exemptions (NIEs) will be extended to international students with valid F-1 and M-1 visas planning to start or continue their academic programme starting from 1 August 2021 or later. This applies to students from all countries. Students with these visas need not contact an embassy or consulate to attain an individual NIE to travel.

According to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you are required to get tested with a viral test three to five days post-arrival, and you must also self-quarantine for seven days after arriving.

NOTE: different states in the US currently have different requirements that you must follow upon arrival. You must consult with a US education expert to understand the requirements for the state that you plan to study in US.


United Kingdom


As per the current rules, international students are allowed to travel to study in UK. The UK government has completely ruled out in-person teaching for a major chunk of courses until 17 May 2021 at the earliest.

Previously, the UK had extended travel corridor agreements with other countries. This meant that travellers from certain countries were not required to self-isolate upon arrival in the UK. However, as of 18 January 2021, all travel corridors to the UK have been suspended until further notice. Thus, no matter which country you are travelling from, you need to present a negative covid test and will have to self-isolate for ten days either in a hotel or at an address in the UK that you must share upon arrival.




Canada is currently encouraging everyone to avoid travel, as much as possible. International students are permitted to travel to Canada under current restrictions as long as they meet the following requirements:

  • proof of a negative Covid test taken within 72 hours of your travel.
  • a valid student visa/study permit, or a letter of introduction that proves you were approved for a study permit
  • Admission offer from a designated learning institution (DLI) with an approved Covid-19 readiness plan by its province/territory
  • Self-quarantine for 14 days, even with a negative test report

To be able to study in Canada as a student, you must have the following:

  • A valid study permit or a letter of introduction that proves you have been approved for a study permit
  • Admission offer from a designated learning institution (DLI) with an approved Covid-19 readiness plan by its province/territory




Australia has sealed its borders to almost everyone, including all international students. At present, thousands of students from around the world who have enrolled at Australian universities are in their home countries and continue to learn remotely.


Frequently Asked Questions


Q1. Considering the pandemic, should I cancel my study abroad plans?

While most students take the chance to apply regardless of the situation, some defer their acceptance. It’s best to speak to an expert to understand the best way forward for you.

Q2. What essential things should I mention in my study-abroad checklist?

After receiving an admit, here’s what you need to do:

  • Formally accept your place at the university
  • Sort out documentation and other paperwork for the visa process
  • Make an action plan for your post-arrival self-quarantine
  • Book your travel tickets
  • Arrange insurance
  • Book accommodation for your stay in the country

Q3. What should I be aware of with my covid test report?

  • Your name should match the name in your travel documents
  • Your date of birth/age should be the same
  • The result of the test – negative, of course!
  • The date the test sample was collected/received by (you) the test provider
  • The name of the test device.

Keeping tabs on these details and constantly checking for updates can be daunting. To ease your process, book a consultation with our destination-wise experts at Manya – The Princeton Review.


Find Your Dream University

If you are planning to study abroad and searching to match your profile with the best suited university, experts at Manya – The Princeton Review have gathered important information of top Universities from abroad. Surely, this information will help you narrow down your quest for universities.

You can access accurate & authentic information related to rankings, application fees, average tuition fees, cost of living, scholarships, latest updates, and much more from more than 1000+ universities. You may also search for universities by name, country, or courses in common specializations, such as Physics, Finance, Business, Language and Culture, Agriculture, Environmental Science, Computer and IT, Media and Communication Marketing.

Manya – The Princeton Review offers end-to-end study abroad services encompassing admissions consulting services, test preparation, English language training, career assessment, and international internship opportunities to study abroad aspirants.

For more information, call our Study Abroad Helpline 1800 102 4646.

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