As members of the Canadian Federation of Students, full-time Grenfell Campus students are eligible to receive an International Student Identity Card at no charge. An ISIC provides great travel discounts on airfare, hotels, trains and, hostels in Canada and internationally. For more information on how to apply or to obtain an ISIC information booklet, drop by the Grenfell Campus Student Union office or visit www.isiccanada.ca to get your card today!
The International Student Identity Card was established more than 60 years ago for the purpose of creating a world-wide discount network tied to a single, widely-recognised form of student identity.
The ISIC is governed by the ISIC Association, a not-for-profit association affiliated with the World Youth and Student Educational Travel Confederation. The Federation is a member of both the Association and the Confederation and, along with its preceeding organisations, has been the Canadian agent for the ISIC since the early 1960s.
Since 1981, the ISIC has been available as a benefit of membership to members who are full-time students. The fee for non-member students is currently $20.00 for the card.
The benefits associated with the ISIC are a result of combined efforts made at various levels:
- Local discounts secured by member local associations;
- Regional and national discounts secured by the Federation; and
- International discounts secured by the ISIC Association.
In recent years, the National Executive has prioritized the development of new national and regional benefit partners. As previously reported, ISIC holders now receive discounts on flights with Porter and purchases at The Body Shop, Shop Moc and Sleep Country Canada (including Mormez-Vous? Locations in Québec). In addition, the Federation has recently secured a 10% discount at TopShop and TopMan. The Federation is currently in discussions with additional national brands to launch new discounts in the fall.
National Issuing System
The Federation is in the final phase of rolling out a new ISIC issuing system. Selected issuing offices are completing the final phase of user testing before the site is launched in July. Training for issuing offices will be conducted in the coming months to ensure a successful transition.
The Federation’s new system will allow issuing offices to print direct to ISICs including onto co-branded cards. The system improves reporting and tracking and integrates in real-time with the ISIC Association international cardholder database. The automatic integration with the cardholder database will allow ISIC holders to easily take advantage of online discounts requiring an ISIC number. Previously, many ISIC holders were required to manually activate their ISIC for online use.
As part of launch of the new issuing website, the Federation is also replacing outdated Zebra label printers with new DataCard direct-to-card printers. The new printers produce a higher-quality ISIC in a shorter amount of time. 12 issuing offices are already equipped with the new printers with additional offices receiving new printers by August 1st. In order to ensure a smooth transition to the direct-to-card printers, the roll out will be staged over several semesters.
Promotion and Marketing
In addition to the roughly 70 students’ union locations at which eligible students can receive an ISIC, students can apply for an ISIC through the online issuing system integrated into isiccanada.ca. The system allows students to order, and pay for, an ISIC online. Because payment is required to process the order, members who apply online are refunded the cost of the card.
The Federation’s online ISIC store is powered by Shopify. Since launching last June more then 1,860 cards have been ordered through the store including 470 cards for members and 1,390 cards for non-members. Members who order ISICs online still receive them as a benefit of membership.
ISIC Canada on Facebook and Twitter
The ISIC Canada Facebook and twitter pages highlight discounts, share news and events, and are also designed to build an online community of cardholders who can provide input and feedback.
Over 11,000 Facebook users “like” the page. The page continues to be a useful tool for cardholders to ask questions about the card itself, domestic and international discounts, and how to renew or acquire a card. Member locals are strongly encouraged to promote the Facebook page and twitter account in order to further expand the audience.
ISIC Discount Guides
For the past several years, the Federation has included regional discount listings as the last section of the handbooks produced through the Federation’s handbook service. Annually, the Federation also produces ‘stand-alone’ ISIC (and Studentsaver) guides for distribution to card holders. The guides will be produced in differing formats, depending on the number of discounts available in each province.
Other Discount Services and Initiatives
UFile.ca Free Tax Filing
Free online tax filing for the 2014 tax year began in February 2015. In early February, promotional posters were distributed to member locals. 16,XXX students filed their 2012 taxes utilizing the Federation’s promotional code, collectively saving approximately $XXX.00.
In the coming year, students will be able to, once again, file their taxes for free for the entire calendar year.