Top Countries Open to International Students' Admission Amid COVID-19

By Subhashri Roy Updated On - Feb 03, 2022 07:28 PM

Reluctant to study abroad amid the Covid-19 pandemic? Whether you prefer face-to-face, online or hybrid learning, read on to find the list of countries offering admission to international students in 2021, along with their current Covid-19 updates in detail. 

The Covid-19 pandemic has undoubtedly put brakes on the study abroad dreams of students, with getting a visa and travelling to a foreign country becoming this year’s most complicated affairs. Practical challenges aside, international students from across the world are simply unwilling to live abroad during these unprecedented times.

Having said that, recent surveys point out that students still do not wish to change their study abroad plans and are still looking forward to accessing face-to-face learning. In fact, they are open to changing their destination and enrolling at institutions that are primarily offering in-person classes

With students expressing concerns about their health along with travel restrictions in the most popular study destinations, this article includes the countries such as the USA, UK, Canada, Germany, etc. that are offering admission to international students in 2021-22.

Planning to Study Abroad?

Countries Accepting International Students Despite the COVID-19 Pandemic

Mentioned below are the top countries that are offering admission to international students in 2021-22, along with their Covid-related updates on international admissions, mode of learning and travel restrictions:


With the US being home to the most number of highest-ranked universities (according to QS World University Rankings 2021), the country remains to be the top overseas study destination for students from all over the world.

However, with the COVID-19 pandemic being the norm for over a year in the US, universities in the country were forced to take swift measures and analyse how students could navigate systems and processes. Also, the United States mission in India, in a statement, said that it has granted a record number of student visas in 2021, hinting towards a upward trend and return to normalcy for both US universities and international students.

Here are the latest updates on admission to US universities in 2021 amid COVID-19:

  • A growing number of US universities have urged international students to get fully vaccinated before joining the campus or moving into campus housing. Some of these universities include Princeton, Columbia, Yale, Stanford, Johns Hopkins, Northwestern, MIT, universities of Chicago, Pennsylvania, Notre Dame, among many others.

  • More  than 1,600 colleges and universities in the US have gone test-optional or test-blind for fall 2022, according to FairTest. This was primarily because of the numerous cancelled test sessions due to safety concerns.

  • Some US colleges have also reconsidered legacy admissions, a practice that offers an advantage to applicants who are family members of alumni.

  • Admission experts have said that students who are applying to a highly selective school should put in an early decision application.

  • The most selective schools in the US will remain as competitive as ever.

  • According to the new Institute of International Education (IIE) data, a vast majority of US institutions intend to bring back students to campus, with many planning to incorporate some type of in-person study and none of them intending to offer online classes only.

Also Read:  Which Country Has the Best Higher Education System?


Universities in the UK have started welcoming prospective students with all safety measures in place in order to reduce the risk of spreading the virus. The borders of the UK are not just open but well prepared to offer campus-based education to students from outside of the UK.

According to the latest statistics, a total of 3,200 Indian students have been accepted by UK universities via the centralised application system of the UK for 2021. This increase marks  a rise of 19% compared to the previous year, as revealed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) on 10th August.

The changes made to the UK universities settings during the COVID-19 pandemic have been mentioned below:

  • International students are able access free vaccinations in the UK as they are rolled out across the country. Students can therefore be able to receive the COVID-19 quicker in the UK than in their home country. The country is also expected to be among the first countries to get fully vaccinated.

  • India has been moved from the UK’s “red list’ to “amber list”, relaxing the hotel quarantine guideline. Students from India can now undergo a 10-day home quarantine instead of hotel quarantine before returning to campus.

  • A number of UK universities have said that they will reimburse the 10-day hotel quarantine and testing fees for students who need to complete a period of quarantine in managed hotel accommodation. Some of these universities include the University of Bristol, Cranfield University, University of Leeds, University of Lincoln, Oxford Brookes University, University of York, Regent’s University London, Aston University and University of Sheffield.

  • The government of the UK released its COVID-19 roadmap in early 2021 and many universities have confirmed that traditional learning is expected to return in September 2021.

  • On July 19, the UK government removed almost all restrictions in England, ending social distancing measures and caps on the numbers of people allowed to meet. Same is the case with restrictions in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Also Read: 5 Best Countries for Indian Students to Study MBA Abroad


As of September 2021, Canada has issued a list of 1,579 Designated Learning Institutions across all the Canadian provinces except Nunavut. DLIs are institutions that have an approved COVID-19 readiness plan for international students.

  • Fully-vaccinated students who are permitted to enter Canada may be exempted from federal quarantine and testing requirements. This applies to students who have a valid study permit, a negative Covid-19 test result, will be attending a DLI with an approved Covid-19 readiness plan, meet all entry requirements of Canada Border Services Agency, and are fully vaccinated.

  • Those who do not qualify for fully vaccinated exemption and are travelling by air should undergo a 14--day quarantine, have a negative pre-entry COVID19 test result and take a test upon arrival in Canada.

  • Those who submitted their complete study permit application for Fall 2021 by May 15, 2021, got their decision by August 6, 2021.

  • The Government of Canada announced that studies outside of Canada up to Dec 31, 2021, will count towards a future Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP).

  • Many universities such as the University of Guelph, University of Toronto, Cape Breton University, among others have mandated proof of vaccination to be allowed access to campus services. However, many have decided to do away with vaccination proofs.


With a commitment to protecting the health of all people studying, living, or working in Ireland, the Government of the country has formulated a reopening plan for universities to start welcoming both current and prospective students during these unprecedented times.

The current education scenario in Ireland for prospective international students can be found in detail below:

  • Admissions to universities in Ireland are going on as per schedule. Third-level education has returned safely on-campus in September.

  • Most universities and colleges in Ireland are teaching through a blend of online and face-to-face learning depending on the situation with COVID-19.

  • The COVID-19 vaccine is available for international students in Ireland.

  • The government has announced a new temporary visa extension for non-EEA international students till September 20, 2021. In case a student’s visa expires during this period, then their visa can be renewed automatically.

  • Third level students who are currently studying online from their home countries will be able to apply for the Third Level Graduate Scheme after completing their course.

  • A national ‘Greet & Transfer’ service for international students has been put in place at Dublin Airport from August 1, 2021.

Also Read: Study in Canada: Approved Vaccines, Travel Rules & Regulations


Germany, like many other countries, has been affected by the Coronavirus. To ensure the safety of the all in the country, the German government has laid out certain rules and restrictions for international students:

  • Entry to Germany is possible only from citizens of EU member states, states associated with Schengen: Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein and other countries including Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, Jordan, Macao, Moldova, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan and Ukraine.

  • International students of other non-EU countries will be permitted to enter Germany only if their course of study is not fully possible from their home countries.

  • Most German universities are conducting both online and in-person classes depending on the current situation.

Also Read: Guide for Int'l Students Travelling to Canada During the COVID-19 Pandemic


The UAE, like all other countries, has been introducing new measures according to the needs of the current Covid-19 situation in the country. For international students wishing to study in UAE, here are the latest updates:

  • All students with a UAE residence permit can travel to the UAE without an approval. However, those from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Zambia, Vietnam, Uganda, Pakistan, Nigeria, South Africa, India and Sri Lanka will need approval. Approval is not required for those who got a newly issued residence or employment visa.

  • International students will get an uninterrupted access to higher education, student life as close to normal as possible and employment opportunities after graduation.

  • The UAE has also introduced a part-time work visa for university students by Dubai Development Authority (DDA). Undergraduate students, too, will be able to gain relevant work experience while earning money during their studies.

  • Admissions to almost all UAE universities are open to international students.

Top Countries With Universities Open for Hybrid/ Online Learning in 2021/22

Given below are the top institutions in the countries offering admission to international students and delivering programmes in hybrid/ online mode in 2021/22:


Name of Institutions


Tuition Fees


Harvard University


INR 29-52 Lakh

Stanford University


INR 37-94 Lakh

Hofstra University


INR 17-40 Lakh

University of Illinois at Chicago


INR 23-26 Lakh

Auburn University


INR 19-23 Lakh

New Zealand

University of Auckland


INR 15-24 Lakh

University of Otago


INR 13-21 Lakh

Victoria University of Wellington


INR 14-19 Lakh

University of Canterbury


INR 15-22 Lakh

University of Waikato


INR 13-21 Lakh


Arden University


INR 7 Lakh

University of Law


INR 8-11.4 Lakh

Kingston University


INR 13-14 Lakh

Berlin School of Business and Innovation


INR 7-10.5 Lakh

University of Applied Sciences, Europe

Berlin, Hamburg and Iserlohn



Australian National University (ANU)


INR 15-23 Lakh

University of Melbourne


INR 18-36 Lakh

University of Sydney


INR 15-24 Lakh

University of New South Wales (UNSW)

Kensington, New South Wales

INR 15-40.5 Lakh

University of Queensland (UQ)


INR 13-33.5 Lakh

Wish to Apply at Universities Abroad?

Top Countries With Universities Open for In-Person Learning in 2021

Here are the top institutions in the countries offering admission to international students and delivering programmes in-person or face-to-face in the 2021/22 academic year:


Name of Institutions


Tuition Fees


Birbeck, University of London


INR 12-13.5 Lakh

City, University of London


INR 15-16 Lakh

Manchester Metropolitan University


INR 12-15 Lakh

University of Oxford


INR 22-54.9 Lakh

University College London


INR 24-28 Lakh


McGill University


INR 4-25 Lakh

University of Toronto


INR 12-34 Lakh

Université de Montréal


INR 6.9-11.4 Lakh

University of British Columbia


INR 4-30 Lakh

University of Alberta


INR 3-13.6 Lakh


Dublin City University


INR 11-14 Lakh

Dublin Institute of Technology


INR 12.7-19 Lakh

IT Sligo


INR 9.2-10 Lakh

Maynooth University


INR 7.9-13 Lakh

Trinity College Dublin


INR 14-22.9 Lakh


Middlesex University Dubai


INR 11-33 Lakh


BITS Pilani


INR 9 Lakh
Manipal Academy of Higher Education - Dubai Campus


INR 5-8 Lakh
IMT Dubai


INR 6-9 Lakh

Still confused about studying abroad in 2021-22? Write to us at for further information or assistance on the same.

Also, stay tuned for the latest updates on foreign education.

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