Get Abroad Education Loan At Affordable Interest Rates

3M+ Users

800 Cr. + Disbursed

15+ Lending Partners

30K+ Students Counselled

A Student’s Guide To Student Visa New Zealand

Student Visa New Zealand

Table of Contents

New Zealand is a young nation where individuality, effort and resourcefulness are viewed more than status or law. As a student here, you would be motivated to be questionable, and agile, and to discover your answers by thinking for yourself. If one intends to study in New Zealand for more than 3 months, a New Zealand study visa is required. There are no age bars to getting a student visa in New Zealand, which is good news for every applicant aspiring to study and work in New Zealand. This blog aims to help you with your student visa New Zealand application. 

New Zealand Student Visa Overview
Student Visa TypesFee-Paying, Exchange, Foreign Govt. Supported, Pathway, Post-Study Work Visa – durations, features, and eligibility.
New Zealand Study Visa CostApplication costs, online vs. paper submission, fees for different submission types.
Eligibility For A New Zealand Student VisaCriteria: acceptance, financial proof, good health, character, and insurance for fee-paying students.
IELTS Requirement For New Zealand Study VisaImportance of IELTS, the minimum score required for a student visa.
Immigration Advice for New Zealand VisaImportance of approved advisers, where to find licensed advisers, exemptions from licensing.
Working Right On A New Zealand Student VisaWork conditions, types of students eligible to work, restrictions on working after course completion.
Working When Your Course Ends And You Still Have A VisaAdhering to Work Conditions After Course Completion, limitations on working hours during specific periods.

Types Of New Zealand Student Visa

As an Indian student, you will probably need a Fee-Paying Student visa. It is crucial to maintain your Fee-Paying student status while studying in New Zealand, as it is directly tied to the purpose for which you came to the country. If you’re 18 or older and intend to pursue studies in New Zealand for more than six months, here’s an overview of the various types of student visas available to you:

Types of student visaDescription
Fee-Paying Student VisaEnrol in full-time studies for up to four years with the option to work part-time.
Exchange Student VisaEngage in full-time studies for up to four years as part of an approved student exchange programme.
Foreign Government-Supported Student VisaUndertake full-time studies for up to four years with financial support from a foreign government loan or scholarship.
Pathway Student VisaPursue up to five years of consecutive courses on a single student visa and have the opportunity to work part-time.
Post-Study Work VisaAfter completing your course at a New Zealand university, you can apply for a post-study work visa lasting 1, 2, or 3 years, depending on your qualification level.

Features Of Each Student Visa 

New Zealand offers various student visas tailored to different needs. The Fee Paying Student Visa allows enrollment in full-time studies for up to 4 years, covering the cost of courses. The Exchange Student Visa caters to those in recognized exchange programmes, permitting up to 4 years of study. The Foreign Government Supported Student Visa accommodates recipients of foreign government support for full-time studies for up to 4 years. The New Zealand Pathway Student Visa allows consecutive courses on one visa for up to 5 years. Post-Study Work Visa permits graduates to work for up to 3 years based on qualification levels. Check them in further details here: 

1. Fee Paying Student Visa Features 

To enroll in full-time studies in New Zealand, you can apply for this visa. You are required to cover the entire cost of your courses and register with an approved educational institution. The visa allows you to stay for a maximum of 4 years. The application fee starts at NZD $375, and the processing time is approximately 6 weeks for 80% of applications. 

How Can New Zealand Fee Paying Visa Be Used? 

  • When you have a student visa, you must attend the specific course mentioned on your visa, whether it’s at a school, tertiary institution (education after secondary school), or for English language studies. Make sure to follow the conditions of your student visa, which require you to be present at the designated place of study.
  • While studying, you’re allowed to work part-time for up to 20 hours per week. During holidays, you can work full-time, depending on the conditions stated in your visa.
  • If you’re of a certain age and living alone, it’s okay. However, if you’re below a certain age, you’ll need to come to New Zealand with your parents or legal guardian.

2. Exchange Student Visa Features

If you’re currently outside New Zealand and have been accepted into a recognised student exchange programme, you can apply for this visa to pursue full-time studies in the country. The duration of your stay depends on the length of the exchange programme, with a maximum allowance of up to 4 years. The application cost begins at NZD 375, and the processing time is typically around 2 weeks for 80% of applications. 

How Can New Zealand Exchange Visa Be Used? 

  • Engage in full-time studies in New Zealand through a school-to-school exchange, an exchange programme organisation scheme, or a tertiary exchange. 
  • You have the option to work part-time, up to 20 hours per week, while studying, or full-time during holidays. The ability to work depends on your age and the duration of your study.

3. Foreign Government-Supported Student Visa Features 

If you are the recipient of a foreign government loan or scholarship, you are eligible to apply for this visa to undertake full-time studies in New Zealand for a period exceeding 3 months. The visa allows for a stay of up to 4 years, with an application cost starting from NZD 375. In terms of processing time, 80% of applications are typically processed within 5 weeks.

How Can Foreign Government Supported Student Visas Be Used? 

  • Attend full-time courses as specified on your visa, encompassing schooling, tertiary education (post-secondary school studies), and English language studies.
  • Work part-time, up to 20 hours per week, while actively engaged in studies, and full-time during holidays, contingent upon the conditions outlined in your visa.
  • If you are above a certain age, you have the option of living independently. However, if you fall below that age threshold, it is mandatory to accompany your parent or legal guardian.

4. New Zealand Pathway Student Visa Features 

This visa grants you the opportunity to pursue up to three consecutive courses on a single student visa. To be eligible, you must possess a Pathway Student Visa offer of a place and the financial means to cover your tuition fees. The duration of stay permitted by this visa is up to 5 years, and the application cost starts from NZD 375. Approximately 80% of applications are processed within 6 weeks.

How Can The Pathway Student Visa Be Used? 

  • Enroll in and complete up to three consecutive courses using a single student visa.
  • Work part-time, up to 20 hours per week, while actively studying and full-time during holiday periods, contingent upon the nature of your course of study.

5. Post-Study Work Visa- New Zealand

You are eligible to apply for this visa if you have recently completed your studies in New Zealand. This visa permits you to remain and work in the country for a period of up to 3 years, the duration depending on the nature of your studies. The cost for this visa starts from NZD 700, and approximately 80% of applications are processed within a timeframe of 5 weeks. 

How Can The New Zealand Post-Study Work Visa Be Used? 

  • Under this visa, you can stay in New Zealand for 3 years, and the duration is determined by both the level of your study and the length of your study period in the country.
  • For individuals with a qualification at degree level 7 or above, the flexibility is granted to work for any employer in any job.
  • If your qualification is at non-degree level 7 or below, you can work in a job related to your field of study. Additionally, your qualification must be listed on the Qualifications Eligible for a Post Study Work Visa list.

When & How To Apply For A Student Visa?

You have the option to apply for your visa either online or using a printed form. It’s advisable to initiate the application process at least 8 weeks before your planned arrival in New Zealand. Given below is a New Zealand study visa application process: 

Step 1: Gather Supporting Documents

To expedite the decision-making process, ensure you provide all the necessary information that Immigration New Zealand (INZ) requires. If applying online, make sure to scan your documents before uploading them.

Step 2: Find Out The Costs

The application fees vary depending on your application method and location. Explore the fees, decision times, and application locations on the INZ website. Note that fees are non-refundable if your application is declined.

Step 3: Apply Online 

Most applicants find the online application process more convenient. Creating a New Zealand Government RealMe account is a prerequisite for online applications. Have all your supporting documents ready before starting your online application.

Apply Using A Printed Form

If you choose to apply using a printed form, download the Student Visa Application form (INZ 1012) and the accompanying guide (INZ 1013). This method takes longer to process but is suitable if you lack regular computer access.

Step 4: Submit Your Application 

Even for online applications, you may be required to send your passport to INZ. They will inform you if this is necessary, and your passport will be returned once the application is finalised.

For printed applications, check the specified submission location for your form and supporting documents.

Step 5: Wait For A Decision

Most applications are processed within a month. INZ will contact you if they need additional information. You can track the progress of your application.

Step 6: When You Get Your Visa

If you applied online, you will typically receive an e-Visa. Print it out or keep it on your mobile device to present at the border upon arrival. If you prefer, you can request INZ to include a label in your passport, but this service comes at an additional cost.

Documents Required For Student Visa In New Zealand 

To apply for a student visa to New Zealand, the following documentation is generally required:

  • An acceptance offer from a New Zealand university. If applying for pathway courses, include a Pathway student visa cover letter approved by the Pathway education provider.
  • Proof of payment for tuition fees.
  • Documentation demonstrating your income and its source.
  • Photocopy of the identity pages of your recent passport.
  • A character certificate validated by the police.
  • A health certificate confirming your good health.
  • Additional documentation may include:
  • Qualification certificates, academic transcripts.
  • Proof of employment history.
  • Evidence of sufficient funds to support yourself.
  • Information about your financial guarantor, including identity and relationship.
  • English language proficiency test scores (e.g., IELTS).
  • Aadhar or Pan card.

You may also need to provide evidence of adequate funds to cover living expenses during your stay, amounting to NZ$20,000 for a full year of study or NZ$1,250 per month. This can include scholarships to study in New Zealand, bank statements, or an education loan for New Zealand to cover accommodation and living costs. 

Optional documentation may include:

  • Flight tickets or other evidence of plans to leave New Zealand after completing your course.
  • Police certificate if you are 17 years or older and plan to study for more than 24 months, serving as evidence of good character.
  • X-ray certificate, is required if staying in New Zealand for over six months, if you’re from a country with a high incidence of tuberculosis, or if you’ve spent more than three months in the last five years in such a country.

Full medical examination:

You might also be required to attend a personal interview at the New Zealand embassy or consulate. 

Please note that requirements may vary, and it’s advisable to check the specific guidelines on the official New Zealand Immigration website or consult with the embassy/consulate.

New Zealand Study Visa Cost 

For applicants from India, the immigration cost and receiving centre fee are contingent on the type of submission, whether online or on paper. 

Type of SubmissionApplication CostReceiving Centre Fee

Note: These fees may vary as per the city from where you are applying. 

Eligibility For A New Zealand Student Visa

Before your New Zealand student visa application visa application journey, it’s crucial to undertake a series of preparatory steps. Firstly, carefully choose the course you wish to pursue. Next, conduct a thorough financial assessment to ensure you have adequate funds to cover tuition fees, living expenses, and other associated costs. Collect all the necessary documents required for your visa application. Finally, take the time to familiarise yourself with the application process and requirements. Let’s check the New Zealand student visa eligibility criteria here: 

To be eligible for a student visa, you must fulfil the following criteria:

  • Acceptance into a course at an educational institution approved by the Ministry of Education or the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA).
  • Sufficient funds to cover your tuition fees or evidence of a scholarship that covers your fees.
  • Proof that you possess adequate financial resources to support yourself during your stay in New Zealand.
  • A valid ticket out of New Zealand or proof that you have enough funds to purchase one.
  • You must be in good health and possess a good character to qualify for a visa.
  • If you are a fee-paying student, you are required to have approved medical and travel insurance. Seek assistance from your education provider to arrange medical and travel insurance.

IELTS Requirement For New Zealand Study Visa 

Securing a New Zealand student visa necessitates providing proof of proficiency in the English language, typically achieved by passing a secure English language test that validates your communication and correspondence skills.

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) stands as the world’s most widely recognised high-stakes English language proficiency test for purposes of study, work, and migration. With over three million tests administered in the past year, IELTS results are acknowledged by more than 11,000 organisations, spanning educational institutions, employers, professional associations, and governments in 140 countries worldwide.

To meet the requirements for a New Zealand student visa, a minimum IELTS score of 5.5 in each module is mandatory. For further insights into the IELTS examination, you can explore additional information on the test.

Who Should Give You The Immigration Advice For New Zealand Visa?  

While assistance in filling out your visa application form can be provided by anyone, it’s essential to note that immigration advice should exclusively come from an adviser approved by Immigration, New Zealand.

Identifying the right adviser is crucial, and it’s important to understand who is authorised to provide advice and who is not. It’s recommended to seek an adviser with expertise in the specific area you need assistance with, and you may need to consult with multiple advisers before finding the most suitable one.

Licensed New Zealand immigration advisers must either hold a licence from the Immigration Advisers Authority or be exempt from the licensing requirement. Exemptions may apply to certain professionals such as New Zealand lawyers, diplomats, or Citizens Advice Bureau staff.

The Immigration Advisers Authority website offers a comprehensive list of authorised advisers, details on the expected cost of their services, and any limitations on the advice they can provide. For instance, offshore education providers can offer immigration advice without a licence but are restricted to providing advice solely on student visas.

Working Right On A New Zealand Student Visa

You may have the opportunity to engage in part-time work for up to 20 hours per week and full-time during scheduled holidays and the Christmas and New Year holiday period, depending on your visa conditions. It is imperative to check your visa documentation, which may include an e-visa, a visa label in your passport, or a detailed letter explaining your work rights.

Engaging in work when it is not permitted constitutes a violation of your visa conditions, potentially impacting your ability to remain in New Zealand or influencing decisions on future visa applications.  

Types of students who can work are: 

  •  Tertiary students
  •  PhD or Masters students
  •  English language students
  • Secondary school students in years 12 and 13 who have school and parent permission
  • Completing practical experience for your study.

Working When Your Course Ends

It is crucial to adhere to the work conditions specified in your visa, even if your course has concluded and your visa remains valid. If your visa stipulates that you can work:

  • 20 Hours Per Week: You are permitted to work up to 20 hours per week. However, this allowance is applicable only until the expiration of your visa.
  • Full-Time Over the Summer Vacation: If your visa allows for full-time work during the summer holiday period, you are obligated to work only during this time and solely while your visa remains valid. Once your visa expires, the work authorisation also concludes.

Failure to comply with these conditions can have consequences, affecting your immigration status and potential future visa applications. It is essential to stay informed about and adhere to the specific work provisions outlined in your visa documentation.

If you are wondering how to find a job in New Zealand, you can talk to your education provider or surf through the job credible job websites like SEEK, Careers NZ, Student Job Search, Work Here, New Kiwis, etc. 

A few universities in New Zealand like the University of Auckland have a workplace insights programme for international students. You can find opportunities and learn a lot of work-related things here, for starters. 

After obtaining a student visa and finding work opportunities in New Zealand, you can open doors to some of the highest-paying jobs in New Zealand. 

There is also a visa called a working holiday visa in New Zealand  that is accessible to young individuals aged 18 to 30 (or 18 to 35 in specific countries), allowing them to travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months. If you are from Canada, this visa extends your travel and work period to up to 23 months, and if you are from the United Kingdom, it can be extended to 36 months.    

New Zealand is a favoured settlement destination for individuals of various nationalities, sought after for its pleasant living environment and opportunities for personal and professional growth. Obtaining permanent residency in New Zealand is a coveted goal for many, supported by the country’s emphasis on economic growth and comprehensive government efforts for the well-being of its residents. Student Visa is the first step to obtaining a New Zealand PR. 

Hope this blog proved helpful for you to understand the New Zealand Student Visa. If you are planning to study in New Zealand, the cost of studying in New Zealand is low as compared to other countries but of course not as low as studying in India. Hence, you might need financial assistance proof which is also needed to obtain a student visa. UniCreds can help you with your New Zealand education loan process as it has partnered with top financial institutions to help take an education loan at lower processing fees. Do check now! 


Q1. How soon can the student travel to New Zealand once they have got their student visa in New Zealand?

Ans: The student visa in New Zealand is valid immediately upon issuing, so once the student has their visa, he/she uses it to travel to and enter New Zealand. 

Q2. How long will the visa last?

Ans: The student visa in New Zealand is valid for the duration of the student’s course if it is up to 12 months long, or for approximately 12 months for courses that last more than a year (the student will be required to renew the visa through the International Student Office of the respective university after this time if the course lasts longer than a year). 

Q3. Can one apply for another visa when their course finishes?

Ans: Yes. If the student meets the New Zealand student visa requirements policy, he/she may apply for residence or another temporary permit.

 Q4. How much money do you need to get a student visa in New Zealand?

Ans: Can I apply for permanent residency in New Zealand after studying on a student visa?

Q5. How much money do you need to get a student visa in New Zealand?

Ans: You generally need to show you have NZ$20,000 for a full year of study or NZ$1,250 per month to obtain a student visa for New Zealand.

Q6. Can I apply for permanent residency in New Zealand after studying on a student visa?

Ans: Yes, it is possible to apply for permanent residency in New Zealand after studying on a student visa, typically through pathways like the Skilled Migrant Category or other residence visa categories.

Recent Posts

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top

Share this blog

Student Visa New Zealand

A Student’s Guide To Student Visa New Zealand

🚀 Over 5K Students Secured Abroad Education Loan With UniCreds!