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New Zealand Student Visa - Important Information

Get important information about the New Zealand Student Visa - Fee Paying Student.

Jennifer ArandaOriginally posted on January 15, 2018; updated January 19, 2018

New Zealand Student Visa - Important Information

There are many reasons to study in New Zealand if you consider the way of life and standards of living enjoyed by its citizens and permanent residents.  There are however, four sub-categories of students visas and you should know which you should apply for.

New Zealand Fee Paying Student Visa for International Students

You will be applying for a New Zealand Fee Paying Student Visa if you:

  • Are going to study for more than three months in the country or;
  • Aren't on a government scholarship funded by the government of your country or;
  • Will not be attending three consecutive academic programs or;
  • Are not an exchange student.

Criteria for a New Zealand Fee Paying Student Visa

And as the name implies, to be granted this student visa, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be enrolled in an approved education provider by submitting either an Offer of Place (or OoP) or Confirmation of Enrolment (or CoE) at the time of your visa application and;
  • Demonstrate that you have ready access to funds to cover your fees and living expenses while studying in New Zealand.

For your application for a Fee Paying New Zealand Student Visa to be approvable, you must be enrolled in an educational institution that is allowed to accept international students.  The New Zealand Qualifications Authority, or NZQA, is the government agency that implements a quality assurance system.  Non-university tertiary education providers are routinely evaluated on whether these meet Evaluative Quality Assurance Framework or EQAF standards and are qualified to accept students for enrollment in their offered programs.

Providers are therefore classified as follows, based on capability:

  • Category 1.  Highly Confident in educational performance and Highly Confident or Confident in self-assessment
  • Category 2.  Confident in educational performance and Confident or Highly Confident in self-assessment
  • Category 3.  Not Yet Confident in either educational performance or self-assessment
  • Category 4.  Not Confident in either educational performance or self-assessment

What the New Zealand Fee Paying Student Visa Entails

Characteristics of the New Zealand Fee Paying Student Visa:

  • With this visa, you can study full-time at the program stated on your visa;
  • Will normally allow you to stay on for the duration of the programe you’ve paid for, up to four years;
  • You can apply for the visa any time during the year;
  • Your spouse or partner and dependent children can apply for a visa based on their relationship with you;
  • If needed, apply for another student visa if you intend to enroll in another program or;
  • Apply for a work visa if you are qualified to do so;
  • Work part-time while classes are in session and full-time during the holidays.

If you are enrolled in an online, distance learning program, you can apply for a New Zealand Fee Paying Student Visa if you have to visit your education provider if you have to do something related to your education.

Conditions to be Refused Admission as an International Student

Remember, even if your application for this visa has been approved, you must still apply for permission to be admitted.  You can still be denied entry permission once you've arrived in New Zealand if you:

  • Don't meet New Zealand's character requirement;
  • Are no longer eligible for the visa owing to a change of circumstances;
  • Refuse to undergo admission procedures such as refusing to have fingerprints or an iris scan taken when asked for;
  • Cannot prove that you have sufficient funds required or have evidence of any onward travel.

Authors & Contributors

Jennifer Aranda

Jennifer Aranda

Jennifer S. Aranda is the COO of IVC Immigrant Visa Center, Inc.

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