Visas to study
If you’re planning to study here full time for more than three months you’ll need a student visa.
Student visa requirements include:
- an offer of place from an educational institution approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority
- a written guarantee from an institution or person that suitable accommodation is available to you in New Zealand (if you're under 18 years)
- evidence of sufficient funds to live on while you are studying
- a return air ticket to your country, or evidence of sufficient funds to buy one.
If you’re spending six months or more here in New Zealand you may need to be screened for tuberculosis.
If you’re over 17 and intending to be in New Zealand for over two years, a police certificate will be required to show that you are of good character.
If your course is three months or less, you don’t need a student visa: just a visitor visa.
If you have been offered a place in an approved exchange scheme you can apply for a student visa for the duration of your exchange, provided you meet our health and character requirements and are a genuine exchange participant. If you’re coming on a working holiday scheme you can do one or more courses of study as long as their total duration doesn’t exceed six months.
This is just a summary. You should make sure you get the full details at Immigration New Zealand. You may also be able to apply for your student visa online.
Working after study
If your long-term plan is to work here and become a New Zealand resident, then you'll need to know about our requirements to work after study. It's good to have these in mind when deciding what course to enrol in so you gain a qualification that's needed and valued by New Zealand employers.
Dependent children of temporary work visa holders also need a student visa. This entitles them to attend New Zealand primary and secondary schools as domestic students. To avoid delays it is strongly recommended that you apply for this visa from your home country. Without a student visa, they can only attend school for two weeks as a domestic student or for three months as a fee-paying international student.