[Updated] May 2021 CFA Exams Cancelled in Multiple Locations

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  • 11th May 2021: Partial closings in 6 more locations: Malaysia, Pakistan, Trinidad and Tobago, Cali (Colombia), Halifax (Nova Scotia), Rio De Janeiro (Brazil).
  • 7th May 2021: Reduced capacity in some US test centers, with impacted candidates being rescheduled to Aug or Nov exams.
  • 6th May 2021: Partial closing in Hamburg, Germany
  • 4th May 2021: Kathmandu added, all other cities in India, more clarification on partial closings and optional deferrals
  • 30th Apr 2021: Updated to include 5 more cancelled locations + Ontario, Canada update
  • 23rd Apr 2021: Initial cancellation announcements for 7 cities in India

CFA Institute has announced partial or full cancellations for the May 2021 CFA exams in these cities:

Optional deferral

  • Ontario, Canada

Partial closures

  • Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
  • Halifax, Canada
  • Cali, Colombia
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Pakistan
  • Malaysia
  • Atlanta, Georgia, US
  • College Station, Texas, US
  • La Crosse, Wisconsin, US
  • Los Angeles, California, US
  • McAlester, Oklahoma, US
  • Mountlake Terrace, Washington, US
  • Portland, Oregon, US
  • San Jose, California, US
  • Santa Maria, California, US
  • Hamburg, Germany
  • Kathmandu
  • Mauritius
  • Kenya
  • Doha, Qatar
  • Santiago, Chile
  • Lima, Peru

Full Closure

  • Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • India (all locations)

What does a ‘partially’ closed location mean? Candidates in cities with partial closings will be contacted via email if their exam appointments have been cancelled. If you have not received an email the assumption is that the exam is going ahead.

If your city is listed as ‘optional deferral’, you will be emailed by CFA Institute offering an option to defer your May 2021 exam to November 2021.

This is due to the increase in COVID cases in these regions. With so many other worries, hopefully this will come as a relief to the candidates in these cities.

More cities and locations may be affected in the coming days and weeks – we will keep updating this page as we learn more.

May 2021 CFA Exam Cancellations FAQ

We will keep this page updated as we learn more, but meanwhile, here are some FAQs on next steps:

May 2021 cfa exams cancelled FAQ

How do I reschedule my cancelled CFA exam?

Candidates affected will be contacted via email “in the next few days” to arrange rescheduling to the November 2021 exam window.

This may be different from CFA Institute’s existing rescheduling policy.

Will my CFA exam location be cancelled?

CFA Institute have not ruled out more cancellations.

In fact they’ve stated that they are “actively monitoring all exam centers” and it’s “possible that additional cities will be impacted”. We will keep this page updated as we learn more.

What CFA exam window will I be deferred to?

Most affected candidates (except US locations) will be deferred to the November 2021 exam window. There won’t be a choice in exam windows as “space is limited”.

For partial closings in certain US test centers, impacted candidates will be notified to reschedule to August or November exam cycle.

Can I get a refund instead?

CFA Institute has not directly confirmed this, but a policy consistent with previous CFA exams is that if your exams have been twice-impacted or more (i.e. this exam has been postponed or cancelled by CFA Institute more than once), you should be given an option to cancel for a full refund.

Welp, I’ve got some free time now. Any recommendations on courses to take while I wait for my CFA exams?

We have a list of alternative, COVID-proof qualifications that CFA candidates might be interested in, which includes financial modelling, programming, data science, languages and well-being courses.

Alternatively – you could also take a break. Spend some time with your family and friends, practice some yoga, and focus on yourself. And stay safe out there.


155 thoughts on “[Updated] May 2021 CFA Exams Cancelled in Multiple Locations”

  1. Just got CFA Institute on the phone that confirmed that they’ll be looking at later exam dates after they deal with the Nov 2021 postponements. Just thought you would like to know.

    • All CFA May 2021 candidates in India are deferred so I’d imagine you would receive instructions to defer to Nov 2021 shortly. This should include candidates that did not manage to schedule the exam.

  2. Hi,

    I have registered for July 2021, however, I will not be able to make it. Are you aware if we will be able to or we will be given again the option to reschedule for another exam window in 2021?

    Thank you,

    • I’m afraid not. The only way you’ll have an option to reschedule for another exam window would be if CFA Institute had to cancel your exam due to Covid, and even then it would likely be a rescheduling to 2022, since the cancelled May 2021 candidates are being moved to Nov 2022.

    • I don’t think it’s much use speculating about July at the moment. There’s no way to predict how the Covid situation will be then, and even then CFA Institute will only make a decision at least a month before, likely right up few days before exam day.

  3. I had registered for may 21 level 1 exam. But could not schedule the test. In the event of cancellation of exams in India, will I be eligible for the deferred exam in Nov?

  4. I had registered for may exam but could not schedule the exam. In the event of of cancellation of the may exam in India, will I be Eligible for the deferred exam in Nov 2021?

    • All CFA May 2021 candidates in India are deferred so I’d imagine you would receive instructions to defer to Nov 2021 shortly. This should include candidates that did not manage to schedule the exam.

  5. Hi,
    I have cfa lvl 1 exam 18th May in Ankara but when i check prometric closure list it says that my center is closed from 27th April to 18th May
    So does it mean my exam its going to be cancelled?

  6. Hi,
    I have cfa lvl 1 exam 18th May in Ankara but when i check prometric closure list it says that my center is closed from 27th April to 18th May
    So does it mean my exam its going to be cancelled?

    • It could be. Turkey isn’t included (yet?) in the list of cancelled locations for CFA May 2021. You also might get rescheduled to another day, or relocated to a different test center.

      Let us know how it turns out!

  7. Hi
    I am a candidate of level 1 and i am gonna take the exam in Turkey but since the Cfa institute still holds the early may review status, i am unsure to book a flight. I have also received the before exam schedule email. Would you think Turkey exams will be in place?

  8. Hi!
    Unfortunately, growing tendency of corona cases during last couple of weeks in my country hasn’t left me unimpacted and I tested positive for Covid today.. right before 2 weeks of my exam😕My exam is planned to go ahead in Armenia and I have confirmation of exact location and timing as well. What can i do now? Is there any way I will get deferral to future available exam window? Will I lose funds I’ve already paid?

    • Quoting CFA Institute:

      If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the 14 days leading up to your exam appointment, have been exposed to someone diagnosed with COVID-19 in the 14 days leading up to your exam appointment, or are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, you must not report to the test center on your exam day. Instead, contact us for more information.

      So contact CFA Institute ASAP to request your exam to be deferred.

      Three big caveats:

      • Due to limited availability for Aug-21, you may have to defer to Nov-21.
      • CFA Institute are inundated with enquiries/complaints/etc right now due to recently-announced Covid postponements, so it’s important to try as hard as you can to successfully contact them so that they can resolve your issue.

      Good luck. If you have any further questions, post a question in our support forum!

  9. Hi matias, is not full closure? prometric told me its confirmed but cfa institute send me a message telling me its cancelled, who should i believe?

    • CFA Institute should be the source of truth here. Their communication specifically states:

      “As of 4 May, CFA Institute has determined that it cannot administer the May 2021 exam in India or Buenos Aires, Argentina.

      So it’s definitely cancelled in Buenos Aires.

  10. Received the mail – ALL CFA EXMS FOR MAY 2021 CANCELLED IN INDIA

    Here is the text:

    “We regret to inform you that, because of pandemic-related health restrictions, CFA Institute has determined that it cannot administer the May 2021 exam anywhere in India. Appointments for all India test centers will be cancelled.

    We will contact you by email next week to provide you with details about re-scheduling your exam to the November administration. Please note that due to the global disruption caused by COVID, we cannot accommodate additional candidates into earlier exam windows. Registration has been closed for the August exam administration.

    TWICE-IMPACTED CANDIDATES You may be eligible for a refund if this is your second exam impact due to COVID-19. CFA Institute will contact you directly via email on 7 June if this option is available to you. If you choose to register for the November 2021 window at no cost, you will not be eligible for a refund.

    We appreciate your patience. Please understand that the CFA Institute Customer Care department does not have any more information at this time, so we will be unable to respond to questions until we have completed the preparations to support your options.

    You likely received an email earlier today regarding the May exam day schedule. Please disregard that message. We apologize for any confusion.”

  11. Hi, my test center is in Navi Mumbai, it is in the list of cancelled cities. I haven’t received mail for deferral yet, has the institute automatically deferred exams to November for candidates from these 8 Indian cities?

    • Hi Gaurav, I have not received an email either and my test center is in Mumbai. I feel that we should be receiving an email in the upcoming days. From what I had heard, the CFA institute was waiting till the 3rd of May to send emails with a deferral option to students in other cities, besides the impacted ones, within India. Once these students have expressed their preferences, the institute will be sending a bulk email regarding the deferral procedure and confirming the dates with us. Unless and until we receive an email from the institute confirming the new dates for our exams, we can’t assume that our exams have been deferred.

    • CFA Institute has been patchy in email communication since the cancellation announcements, so perhaps they’re quite overwhelmed by enquiries and logistics. I wouldn’t panic yet – the CFA Institute test center updates page clearly states that they cannot go ahead in Navi Mumbai for May 2021, so you’ll get deferral details for November soon (I hope!).

  12. Hi, do you have any idea about brazil. In Prometric site São Paulo says that they are closed until 29 may, but i didn’t receive any information about, Thanks

  13. Hi, I live in Kolkata (India) and the cases here are quite a lot. The government is not allowing any academic gatherings too and have imposed partial lockdown too. When will the CFA Institute inform us whether our exams will take place or not?

  14. Hey Srishti, I am in the same situation as yours (registered for L2 and reside in India). I received an email from CFA today talking about a deferral option for the August exam. But could not see any deferral option in the website. Any idea about this?

  15. Hello, I deferred my exam to November window on may 2. But, today I got a mail from Prometric regards to my may 2021 exam location along with date and time. Does this mean that my deferral was not accepted or it means that Cfa institute has not informed prometric about the same?

    • No idea. They also said they wouldn’t be making any cancellation decisions until early May, but clearly they went against their own guidance when they announced the cancellations. So it’s anyone’s guess – any day now!

  16. My test center is in Lima-Perú but I haven’t received a cancellation email yet. There are 2 test centers in Lima-Perú (really close to each other), my friends who are giving the exam in the other test center have received the email already, do you have any information if the other test center is going to be cancelled as well?

    • CFA Institute’s postponement announcement states Lima, Peru as an entire location, so your location should be cancelled as well.
      CFA Institute might be just working through the test centers – because of all the uncertainty and changes CFA Institute may be taking longer than expected to work through all this.
      Stay safe!

    • Given that the CFA May exams start on the 18th it’s theoretically possible that CFA Institute may not have to postpone the exams in Turkey. But the lockdown may last beyond 17th May – 3 weeks is very short for a lockdown.

      I’d rate cancellation chances in Turkey as ‘likely’.

    • I am a level 1 candidate in istanbul as well. Seems like CFA institute is not gonna postpone the exams for Turkey

  17. Hello, I am in Ontario and clicked the button to defer. This brings you to a site saying thank you for advising that you would like to defer, but I have not received any email or communication confirming that the deferral is approved. Given the option to defer expires on May 3, how do I know if my deferral request is confirmed? Thanks.

    • They might mean that you have until May 3rd to click on the button to defer.

      In any case many candidates are reporting the same thing, so chances are CFA Institute is a little behind on things possibly due to the volume.

      If you want some additional reassurance, I would email CFA Institute at info@cfainstitute.org just to make sure your intent to defer is clear and on the record.

  18. Hi, my test center is in Mumbai, India (an impacted city) and I had received an email on the 24th of April regarding exam deferral. However, I am yet to receive an email regarding the rescheduling process. My peers living in other cities have already received an email stating that the deadline to make a conformation regarding the same is on the 3rd of May. Now I don’t what is happening and this is creating a lot of uncertainty. Are there any previous instances where CFA has made an announcement and then taken it back after a couple of weeks. Also, do you have any idea as to when they will send the email?

      • If you’ve received an email from CFA Institute on the 24th of April stating that your exam has been deferred, the ball is in CFA Institute’s court to get back to you on what’s next.
      • I am not aware of CFA Institute ever reversing a CFA exam postponement or cancellation decision.
      • As it seems from your comments that the whole of Mumbai is still waiting for their emails, there shouldn’t be any cause for concern.

      I understand that it’s frustrating to wait and receive no news, but at this point it’s likely best to sit tight and wait for CFA Institute to get in touch.

  19. I am a CFA Level 1 candidate registered for May 2021 and I am from Kolkata (a non affected city). Due to a rise in Covid cases in India and exams getting cancelled in few Indian cities, I was offered an option to defer my term to November. If I choose to do so, will I be required to pay any additional cost?

  20. I am registered for the August 2021 Level 2 exam & haven’t selected the test centre yet. Is the deferment option available for November 2021? With the current situation in India, I still feel unsafe to give an exam in August. Any likelihood of Aug getting cancelled too just like May?

    • There’s certainly a chance but there’s no point in speculating about that right now. August’s Covid situation may be different, and even if it isn’t, CFA Institute are unlikely to be making decisions on August 2021 until around July.

  21. I am giving L2 from Kolkata. Is it certain the exam will happen or cfa might announce in few days that kolkata will also be added to to the current 8 cities where exam gets canceled?

    • Yep – have updated the article to reflect CFA Institute’s latest announcement, and included the fact that candidates at other locations are also receiving emails with an option to defer to November 2021.

  22. I am L3 Candidate and I did the same thing, I have rescheduled it from Bangalore ( a cancelled location) to Hyderabad( non affected location) and I have got the exam confirmation mail from Prometric and it appears so also on the CFA institute’s my enrollment section. But they didn’t mention the possibility of rescheduling in their mail. I have concerns about the validity of the rescheduling of the exam

  23. I have my exam in Hyderabad (a non affected location) but still I got a mail for a voluntary deferral option to Nov. The mail states the below

    “As communities around the globe continue to adjust to the profound effects of COVID-19, we at CFA Institute have been monitoring health restrictions around the world, and particularly for our registered CFA candidates in India.

    For cities where exams will go forward, we believe that even where government regulations allow us to administer the exam, the pandemic is presenting unique challenges to our India-based candidates. Your health and safety are important to us, and we want to provide you with the opportunity to defer your exam if you feel unsafe testing in May.

    That is why we will offer registered May candidates in India the opportunity to defer your exam to the November exam administration. Please note that due to the global disruption caused by COVID, we cannot accommodate additional candidates into earlier exam windows.

    If you make the decision to defer, we will send you an email when your account has been updated and you can change your exam. Please do not attempt to take action to change your exam registration now.

    Only use the button below to indicate your desire to defer your exam registration to November. If you do not choose, we will assume that you plan to keep your scheduled appointment. The deadline to make your choice is 3 May.

    Does this assures that I can defer my exam to Nov without any additional cost.

  24. Thanks. Just a thought, why don’t they postponed for a month or 2 as the paper is now online and it shouldn’t cause much trouble rather than postponing for 6 months everytime.

    • The exams are not ‘online’, they are computer-administered in test centers.

      I understand the frustration in wanting the exams to be done, but rearranging logistics including venue, grading, MPS setting, results days for 100,000+ candidates, all of which have individual circumstances and preferences, is not a simple task. Venues will likely also not have availability if just moving by 2 months, and they won’t want to risk COVID still raging then. Hope that helps.

  25. Can we assume now that the CFA exams have been postponed for sure ? The mail seems to be generalized. But i did receive the mail that exams are cancelled in select cities. So by this can i assume for sure that exams have been postponed ?

  26. Is the deferment option available to non-affected cities also in India? My centre is not covered but i still feel unsafe traveling given the covid outbreak in India😒

    • As of right now an optional deferral is not available to any location, although for the December 2020 exams CFA Institute did offer that to candidates so it’s possible that it could be brought back for May 2021 candidates.

  27. I’m new to the CFA Program but want to know more about CFA Level 1. Do you have any good starting points?

  28. I am a Level 2 Candidate … My test centre got cancelled ….. Now if I want to differ to different test centre location which is not affected can I?

  29. Is there a possibility that they go ahead with May exam in Delhi if the covid cases decrease in next 2 weeks? My exam has been postponed 3rd times and it’s frustrating now.

    • That’s extremely unlikely I’m afraid. If it’s any consolation, I don’t think CFA Institute wanted Covid cancellations to happen either!

  30. I’m a CFA L3 candidate, and have my exam scheduled for May 25th, 2021 in Mumbai. I haven’t recieved any mail from the institute that the exam has been cancelled. Isn’t everyone receiving a mail? Or is the cfa institute official announcement on the website is sufficient to assume cancellation?

    • CFA Institute stated that they will contact all candidates “within the next few days”. It’s been a bit more than 24 hours since the initial announcement so I would give it a few days first. They must be absolutely swimming in enquiries at the moment.

      If you still don’t receive any news, the best way of getting hold of CFA Institute currently seems to be via phone. Be prepared to hold for at least half an hour though – half an hour was about the holding time before the cancellation announcement, so it’s likely to be a lot more now.

  31. Hello

    I am a registered May’21 Level 2 candidate but i haven’t received any email from CFA Institute regarding cancellation/postponement of my attempt.

    My selected test centre is in New Delhi & the only information i’m getting is through the website about postponement.

    I’ve also tried calling & emailing CFA Institute but I haven’t got any response.

    What can I do?

    Aakash Gupta

    • CFA Institute stated that they will contact all candidates “within the next few days”. It’s been a bit more than 24 hours since the initial announcement so I would give it a few days first.

      If you still don’t receive any news, the best way of getting hold of CFA Institute currently seems to be via phone. Be prepared to hold for at least half an hour though – half an hour was about the holding time before the cancellation announcement, so it’s likely to be a lot more now.

  32. Actually you didn’t get want I Said.

    The Mail of affected candidates in India and Unaffected Candidates in India were different.

    The Affected in this Case ME. I just mail regarding cancellation.

    The Unaffected got mail regarding Deferred.

    Are there system already saved details regarding Deferred candidate of November.

    And Changing it now won’t help it as its already assumed they have been deferred

    • Right, I got an email that my New Delhi scheduled exam would be deferred. But after seeing that others had rescheduled, I tried the same and scheduled my test centre as Lucknow. Been waiting to take the L2 exam since last June so this is frustrating.
      Although I do doubt that the exams will go ahead even in the currently affected centres, and also the fact that rescheduling was allowed only until the 16th I doubt the newly rescheduled seats will be going through.

  33. Hi, i scheduled my exam in New Delhi, i heard that some people are able to re-schedule their exam, so is that option now available? Can i re-schedule to other location? Plus when we go the the candidate resources > schedule exam appointment then my current scheduled date and location appears, so is there any other way to re-schedule or i dont have that option. please help

  34. My exam centre was New delhi , As it was cancelled I tried to reschedule to other city which was not affected and it got rescheduled and I received confirmation although the DEADLINE to RESCHEDULE was 16th APRIL.

    I want to know whether its possible or they will cancel it afterwards.

      • The mail I received didnt give me deferal option like others got having centres in unaffected cities in India assuming im already deferred to november, Is it so?

        • If you’ve successfully rescheduled to an unaffected city, it makes sense that you didn’t get a deferral option.

          Whatever location that shows up under ‘My Enrollment’ in your CFA Institute account would be your exam location.

  35. My exam was scheduled to take place on 28th May at New Delhi. As it has now been postponed to November , as they say, is there any chance that Institute might arrange the exam earlier than November. This is the 3rd time my ex has been postponed.

    • CFA Institute has already stated that November 2021 will be the only exam window for deferred candidates. The reg window for August 2021 has also closed so you won’t be able to get a refund and re-register for August 2021 unfortunately.

    • Sorry to hear that! According to policies CFA Institute have enacted in the past you may be eligible for a full refund. That is, if you want it.

  36. Hey, I am a Candidate for May 2021 exam (New Delhi, India). The CFA Institute has announced that the Indian May 2021 exams will be canceled and only November dates are available (August is full in India). Is it possible for me to change my registration to a center in Dubai for August 2021(assuming that there are seats available) instead of waiting till November 2021?

    • Same as everything else these days – with great uncertainty. My advice would be to prepare for your exam as if it is going ahead until confirmed otherwise by CFA Institute.

      I know it’s not ideal and very stressful, but unfortunately until Covid clears, becomes more predictable, or CFA Institute introduces widespread remote proctoring, this is what we have to work with. 😩

  37. I am a CFA level 3 candidate, who has been affected thrice due to this delay. Is it possible for me to defer the exam directly to May 2022. I am planning to take another exam and also might move to a new place. So, I am not sure if the November 21 exam will be the best option for me. Also, how much the exam course change by then?

    • Since the 2021 CFA exam curriculum is frozen, the exam curriculum for any exam in 2021 is the same as June 2020, which I assume is your original exam. So for November 2021, your original materials would still be the most up-to-date.

      Currently CFA Institute are only offering deferrals to November 2021. Given you’re thrice-delayed you’re likely to qualify for a refund, so if May 2022 is better for you, one possible option might be to ask for a refund and register as a new candidate for May 2022.

  38. Below is a small excerpt from the mail from CFA on May 2021 exams in India.

    “Cities currently closed include Mumbai, Bhopal, Pune, New Delhi, Bangalore, Channai and Indore. No other May CFA exams in India have been cancelled at this time, but some appointments will be rescheduled to accommodate local curfews and weekend lockdowns. If your appointment is impacted, you will receive a communication directly from Prometric with your new appointment details.”

    My exams are in Gandhinagar center. When they say some appointments will be rescheduled to accommodate local curfews and weekend lockdowns, does it mean that my exam might get preponed/postponed by a day or two to accommodate the then lockdown regulations? or does it mean that one might get deferred to November?

    Thanks in advance.

    • I’m quite sure that what CFA Institute means that Prometric might need to rearrange the exact timings of exams in case it doesn’t work with local curfews and weekend lockdowns, e.g. moving the time to earlier in the day, or to a week day. This will be within your May exam window, not a rescheduling to November 2021.

    • Sorry to hear that! If this was your second time being postponed by CFA Institute, according to policies they’ve enacted in the past you may be eligible for a full refund. That is, if you want it.

  39. My exam was scheduled at New Delhi on 25th May. Can I now reschedule it to Lucknow/Hyderabad as the exam is still not cancelled there. Though the last deadline for re-scheduling was 16th April, the link seems to be still active. My worry is if I re-schedule to Lucknow, pay the rescheduling fees and then I am informed that the rescheduling is not possible.

    • Candidates will get a deferral to November 2021 – it is unlikely that CFA Institute will have the resources or capacity to rearrange individual relocations for all affected candidates.

      Sorry to be the bearer of bad news!


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