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Moving to and Living in Vancouver

Amenities

Regent College is located across the street from the UBC Village, which has restaurants and eateries, grocery stores, a pharmacy, an office supply store, banks, pubs, and many other amenities.

To access UBC facilities and services you will need a UBC card. You will also need a Campus Wide Login (CWL) to access computer labs, library accounts, and other online services.

Money and Finance


Banking

Several banks offer special student accounts that reduce the service fees charged on accounts. The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) and the Bank of Montreal (BMO) are located across the street from Regent in the University Village. Other banks have Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) at various locations on campus.

You may wish to compare services, products, fees and branch locations at the most commonly used banks:

  • CIBC: 1.800.465.2422 (in North America) or cibc.com (branch on campus)
  • Bank of Montreal: 1.800.363.9992 (in north America) or bmo.com (branch on campus)
  • Royal Bank: 1.800.769.2511 (in North America) or royalbank.com Ask about student banking packages because the service fees are lower; many of these packages include a credit card option.
We recommend that you do not carry large amounts of cash on you while en route to Canada. Currency exchange services are available at the Vancouver airport and at any of the major banks or credit unions in the city. Traveller’s cheques, debit, and credit cards are widely accepted in Vancouver.

Transferring Funds to Canada

  • BANK DRAFT: obtain a bank draft for the amount you wish to transfer and bring it with you to Canada. It could take more than thirty days for the bank draft to be processed.
  • WIRE TRANSFER SERVICE (also called electronic or cable transfers): request at your local bank to send money to a new bank account in Canada. This money will be available immediately once transferred to Canada; check with your local bank about its processing times.
  • BANK CARD: use your electronic bank card for your bank in your home country to withdraw money from your home account at an ATM (Automated Teller Machine) in Canada. The Plus and Cirrus networks are widely available in vancouver. check with your bank about the practicality of this option. various service charges can apply for using your bank card outside the country and exchange rates will fluctuate daily.

US Dollar Accounts

Virtually all Canadian banks can provide you with US dollar accounts. you can deposit the funds you are bringing with you in US currency, then convert amounts to Canadian dollars only as you need—this will work to your benefit especially if the Canadian dollar falls in value. While Regent will let you pay your tuition in US dollars, you will probably get a better exchange rate from a bank. You can also open a Canadian dollar account for your everyday needs. A good place to exchange your currency is the Vancouver Bullion & Currency Exchange: vbce.ca It tends to give a better exchange rate than the banks.

Taxes

Because most regent students maintain significant residential ties only in Canada, they are generally considered Canadian residents for tax purposes as of the date they arrive in Canada. Income tax in Canada is relatively high, and you should be prepared to pay taxes on income from teaching assistantships, work/study positions, other jobs, and bank interest. Income received after moving to Canada may be taxable in Canada even if you receive it from another country. If you are selling assets or receiving other income to finance your time at Regent (and depending on your personal circumstances), you may wish to finalize transactions before entering canada.

Students from countries that have a tax treaty with Canada may potentially not be required to pay income tax on these sources, and, with permission from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), may request that their employer stop withholding tax from their Canadian employment income. Call CRA with any questions about your specific circumstances: 1-800-267-5177 (in North America) or at 1-613-952-3741 (outside North America—collect calls accepted).

Information is also available at cra-arc.gc.ca

You may be eligible for various tax credits even if you are not required to pay income tax. Moving expenses such as transportation and storage of personal effects, travel, and temporary accommodation may be considered as an eligible deduction, so save your receipts for the cost of relocating to Canada in case you meet the conditions for claiming the deduction.

There is currently a 12% harmonized sales Tax (HST) on almost all goods and services in British Columbia. However, a referendum vote in August 2011 extinguished the HST, and the province is in the process of reinstating a separate 5% federal sales tax and 7% provincial sales tax.


Bookstores

The Regent Bookstore carries all the theological literature you could hope to get your hands on. The Bookstore also offers a full range of Regent lectures and courses in various audio formats. Visit the Bookstore website for more information.

The UBC Bookstore sells university texts, trade books, general stationery, office supplies, computers and software at discounted student rates, printers, and clothing.

Computer services and IT Help Desk

IT operates a Help Desk in the library, as well as a very helpful site for students. For all IT-related questions, visit the IT website

The Regent College Student Association (RCSA) runs a small computer lab at Regent with six Internet-connected PCs, running Microsoft Office and connected to the Internet. Access to the computer lab is included in the cost of the Student Association fee.

Additional computers can be accessed at some UBC computer labs UBC computer labs.

Printing services are available through Staples, Copiesmart, and UBC Libraries.

Most students find that having their own computer is essential, as all assignments must be handed in typed. Some bring their own equipment from home, some purchase new computers in Vancouver, while others acquire second-hand computers from students leaving Regent. Canadian power supply is 120V but most computers are dual voltage.

ESL Help Desk

During the academic year, Regent operates an ESL Help Desk. Hours for Fall 2013 are:

Mondays 9:00-12:30pm in Room 13
Wednesdays 12:00-1:30pm in Room 13 or 14

Sign up in Student Services on Vania Levans's door or email Vania.

Groceries

There is a grocery store across the street from Regent College in the Village, as well as a large supermarket, Save on Foods, about 10 minutes away by bus or car.

International House at UBC

International House at UBC is a social and cultural centre that helps UBC international students adjust to their new cultural and academic setting. Regent students can take advantage of the many services offered, such as ESL classes, orientation sessions, day trips, and social activities. The House is also open to US students. A snack bar is located on the premises.

Mailboxes, lockers, telephones

Student mailboxes, lockers, and public telephones are available on the lower level of the College. Internal student mail is placed in the mailboxes. Personal student mail addressed to the College is accepted at the beginning of term until students are housed permanently. A limited number of lockers are available for rent on a term basis.

Office supplies

The UBC Bookstore and Staples sell a wide variety of office supplies and equipment.

Printing, photocopying, and faxing

There are two coin-operated copiers in the library. The cost is  $0.10/ page. Photocopying is not available to students in the staff and faculty copy room next to Reception.

There are a number of printing and photocopying places on campus, including Staples, Copiesmart, and UBC Libraries.

Faxing is not available to students at Regent. Faxes can be sent through Staples and Copiesmart. In the case of an urgent or confidential situation, we will accept faxes sent to students, but only if they have first received permission from Reception.

Recreational facilities

Regent students have access to UBC’s many recreational facilities and intramural sports. Read more.

Restaurants and eateries

The Well Café, located in the Regent College Atrium, offers a selection of coffees, teas, baked goods, and light lunches. They have the best coffee deals on campus!

Every Tuesday at Regent, the entire community gathers for a light lunch of soup and bread, prepared in our very own Rita Houston Kitchen, for a suggested donation of $2. During Spring and Summer terms, we also serve a full lunch once or twice a week for $5.

There is no shortage of places to eat near Regent. The closest are across the street in the University Village or in the Student Union Building about 7 minutes away on foot.

Numerous other options can be found throughout the UBC campus. Try the Café MOA at the Museum of Anthropology, or the Sage Bistro for a fine dining experience on campus. Visit UBC Food Services for a full list of eateries on campus. More information can also be found on the Attractions UBC website.

Spouses Network

This is a network of spouses that gathers several times each term in different parts of the city to provide fellowship, support, and a variety of practical advice and care. They also organize fun activities and outings. To join this network, please contact the Assistant Dean of Students.

Student Association (RCSA)

The Regent College Student Association provides a number of services to Regent students, and organizes a variety of social events. Visit the RCSA page for full details.

UBC Alma Mater Society (AMS)

All Regent College students are members of the UBC Alma Mater Society (AMS). This brings a number of tangible benefits, including:

AMS membership also gives students a recognized ID card, valid across the city, which can be used to claim student discounts on entrance fees to Vancouver attractions such as the Aquarium and Vancouver Art Gallery.

UBC Card

All students registered at Regent are eligible to collect a UBC student ID card, which also serves as a UBC Library card and grants access and borrowing privileges for all UBC Library facilities. Library access is updated every academic year, so you retain access to Library facilities until August 31 of each year in which you register.

To collect your UBC Card, you need to take government-issued photo ID to the Carding Office in the UBC Bookstore, where they will take your photo and issue your card. Your 8-digit UBC student ID number is printed on the front of the card. Your Library barcode number is printed on the back of the card, and you'll need this number to access online library databases and resources.

Please note that you can only obtain your UBC Card after you’ve registered for your courses at Regent. Once you register, we forward your information to UBC and they will be able to find your record in their database and issue your UBC Card.

If you pay Student Fees at Regent, you can also use your UBC Card to access certain athletic facilities such as the Aquatic Centre, and you can get a U-Pass (a discounted public transit pass). Eligibility is updated every term, so your UBC Card will be activated for these services only in those terms in which you pay Student Fees.

Writing Centre

Regent's Writing Centre is a free tutoring service for students at all levels of writing proficiency.

Tuesdays 3-5pm
Thursdays 3-5pm

The Centre is in the library seminar room.
Sign up in Student Services on Vania Levans's door or email Vania here.