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Step 8. Check Your Luggage



Standards : What works in Canada





We recommend that you bring some warm clothes so that you aren't left shivering on the first cold days after you arrive. However, you should purchase clothing suited to the Canadian winter once you get to Montréal.

Don't miss our workshop entitled "How to survive winter in Montréal", which is given by the International Student Affairs every term to help answer all your questions about winter, how to enjoy it and how to get equipped for it.


Average temperatures in Montréal


Current meteorological conditions and forecasts


Standards : what works in Canada

Electrical standards
In North America, the voltage used is 110 V, 60 Hz. If you plan to use European devices (220 V , 50 Hz), make sure to bring along the necessary adapters and converters.

  • An adapter is used solely to change a specific plug type into a different kind of plug so that it can fit into North American outlets.
  • A converter is used to convert one electrical current, e.g. 110 V, into the voltage required by your device, e.g. 220 V for Europe. Make sure to read the converter’s safety precautions and never exceed its maximum voltage rating, which is expressed in Watts (W).

To find out whether the device you plan to bring requires a converter, read the electrical specifications label usually affixed to the power pack. If it indicates “100-240V”, it means that the device can be used with any voltage rating between 100 and 240 volts. If, rather than a hyphen, it uses a forward slash (“110 V/220 V), it means that the device can be used with either voltage, but you need to toggle the device between the two voltages using a special switch usually located next to the power connector.

Most portable computers and mobile phones work with any voltage and do not require a converter; in such cases, a simple adapter will suffice.

A multiple-outlet extension cord from your home country may come in handy if you have to plug in several small devices at the same time, all with one adapter. But make sure that all your adapters, converters and extension cords have grounded wires. You can tell by the presence of a third plug (on the male side) and hole (on the female side).

Heating devices
Devices that consume a lot of energy, like those using heating resistors (blow dryer, curling iron, clothes iron, toaster, etc.) not intended for use with 110 V will not work. You are better off purchasing these devices once you get to Montréal.

Mobile phones
You can use your mobile phone to sign up to a Canadian mobile phone service if your phone is a tri-band GSM phone that has been unlock, i.e. it accepts all service providers. Contact your local service provider before you leave and ask to have your phone unlocked.

Audiovisuel standards
In North America, NTSC is the audiovisuel standard, which operates at a frequency of 60 Hz. In Europe, PAL is used (50 Hz). Video devices (such as televisions, DVD players, game consoles and so on) that do not support NTSC will not work in Canada. Games that you bring with you will only work in a country that is part of your home zone. For instance, North America is Zone 1, whereas Europe is Zone 2.

Paper formats

  • Paper in North America uses the Letter format (21.59 x 27.94 cm) and not the A4 format (21 x 29.7 cm). Therefore, it is not useful to bring your binders or packs of paper with you.
  • Fountain pens are not widely used in North America. If you wish to use one, you should bring your refill cartridges and your erasers with you.



Here's a litle checklist to help you remember everything you need to do and bring

Before you leave, be sure you have;

  • Received your Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) 
  • Received your study permit retrieval letter
  • Your temporary resident visa (if required)
  • Paid tuition fees
  • Proof of exemption from HEC Montréal's health insurance plan
  • Your transit visa (if required)
  • Registered for courses (if required)
  • Read the Admission Guide and followed the steps
  • Checked out the transportation options from the airport
  • Reserved temporary accommodation (if needed)
  • Printed the welcoming week calendar

When you leave, be sure to keep with you at all times;

  • Your passport
  • Your letter of admission from HEC Montréal
  • Your Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ)
  • The letter to pick up your study permit from Canadian immigration
  • Your temporary resident visa (if required)
  • The proof of exemption from HEC Montréal's health insurance, or of the funds to pay the applicable premiums
  • Means of payment (credit cards, cash, traveller's cheques, etc.)
  • Medication (if needed)

Baggage losses and delays are very common. Consequently, you should always keep important items with you.

Remember that you will need to present all your documents to a Canadian immigration officer when you get off the plane. If you don't, you could be sent back to your home country. You will not have access to your luggage at that point, so make sure that you have your papers on you.

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