Paying Back Student Loans

Your student loans are just like any other loan: they must be paid back.

If you have Canada and Alberta loans, you’ll make monthly payments to two separate lenders
and you’ll need to keep your contact information updated with at least two loan providers.

There are serious consequences if you miss even one payment on your provincial or federal student loan. However, there are also government programs that can help if you are having trouble making payments.

This guide prepares you for success to repay your student loans and protect your financial future.

repayment quick facts (.pdf)

Manage your student loans online


If you have Canada and Alberta loans, you will make monthly payments to two separate lenders.


Alberta Student Aid

Alberta Student Aid can help you customize your monthly payments or access repayment assistance plans. Call 1-855-606-2096 to discuss options.

The Alberta Student Aid - MyLoan site lets you manage your loan online.

You'll need your MADI (My Alberta Digital ID) login and password to access the MyLoan site.

On the MyLoan site, you can:

  • review your Alberta student loan information
  • check loan balances, loan payments and transaction history
  • update personal and other contact information
  • access online loan counselling resources.

Access Alberta Student Aid-MyLoan

Other provincial funding

If you are not an Alberta resident, check with your provincial /territorial funding agencies


National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC)

In addition to your provincial loan, you will need to manage any federal loans you have received. You'll need your NSLSC login and password to access CanLearn.ca.

On the CanLearn site, you can:

  • check the status of your Canada student loans
  • update personal and other contact information
  • customize your repayment
  • get repayment assistance or apply online for the Repayment Assistance Plan (RAP)
  • find tools and resources to help you manage your student loan.

Access CanLearn.ca

The NSLSC can be reached by phone at 1-888-815-4514.

Update your contact information


Your lenders will send you crucial information about your loans and your repayment status. You need to let Student Aid Alberta and the National Student Loan Service Centre know of any changes including:

  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Email Address
  • Marital Status
  • Banking Information

Make a repayment plan before your 6-month interest-free period ends


Six-month interest-free period

You have a six-month interest-free (grace) period after your last date of study before you have to make a payment on both provincial and federal student loans

Your first payment will be due in the seventh month after you complete your studies. If you finish your studies in April, your first payment will be due in November.

Your six-month interest-free period begins after you:

  • finish your final school term

  • reduce from full-time to part-time studies

  • leave school or take time off school.

You're not required to pay before your six-month, interest free-period ends, but we encourage you to start paying as soon as you graduate. You can make lump-sum payments at any time, even while you are still in school. Early payments will help you pay back your student loans sooner.

If you are returning to school, remember to confirm your enrolment to keep loans interest free and extend your repayment date. Learn more and download confirmation of enrolment forms »

Protect your credit rating: keep your loans in good standing


After your six-month interest-free (grace) period ends, you must make monthly payments on your loan(s). There are serious consequences if you miss even one payment on your student loans. If you default on your student loans by missing three or more payments:

  • Your credit rating will be negatively affected.

  • Your loans may be sent to a collection agency.

  • Any GST or income tax refunds you are eligible to receive will be automatically used to repay your defaulted loans.

  • The provincial and/or federal governments may take legal action against you.

  • You will lose your eligibility for further student loans until you bring your loans into good standing.

Student Aid Alberta has more detailed information about default consequences »

Apply for repayment assistance before you miss a payment


If you can't make a payment or if you have already missed a payment, contact each of your lenders right away. There are repayment assistance options to help you keep your loans in good standing.


National Student Loan Service Centre

  • 1-888-815-4514 (within North America) Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. local time
  • 1-888-815-4556 TTY (for the hearing impaired)
  • Dial the international access code + 800-2-225-2501 (outside North America)

Student Aid Alberta

  • 1-855-606-2096 (toll free in North America) Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. local time
  • 1-855-306-2240 TTY (for the hearing impaired)
  • Dial the international access code + 800-2-529-9242 (toll free outside North America)

Contact a Financial Aid Advisor if you have questions about the repayment process.

Student loan repayment webinar

The National Student Loan Service Centre (NSLSC) provides repayment webinars to help you understand the options for repaying your student loan. Webinars are one hour long and free of charge. Watch repayment webinar »