Visas and immigration

If you are coming to New Zealand to study for more than three months, you will need a student visa.

Pile of passports laid on the table

When to get a visa

UC recommends that you obtain a student visa with Immigration New Zealand before you travel to New Zealand. Please be aware that if you travel to New Zealand with the intention of studying without a student visa, you may be refused a tourist or visitor visa at the border.

Eligibility for a student visa

To qualify for a student visa, you must enrol on a full-time course. Once your visa has been approved, you cannot change to a part-time course. The University is obliged to notify Immigration New Zealand if you change to part-time study or discontinue your course.

For more information about the Student Visa including eligibility and your rights while you study in New Zealand, please visit the Immigration New Zealand website.

Applying for a student visa outside of New Zealand

To apply for a student visa before traveling to New Zealand, please refer to the Immigration New Zealand website.

To get a visa, you will need to provide evidence that you have paid your fees and have a place at UC. When your application for admission is approved, UC will send you an Offer of Place letter that you can use for your visa application. An Offer of Place at the University does not guarantee that you will be issued a student visa.

You can pre-pay estimated fees to UC to show Immigration New Zealand that you have paid your fees. For more information on how to prepay your fees see how to Pay your fees.

Immigration New Zealand requires evidence that you have at least $15,000 NZD available to support yourself for one academic year. If you are studying for a shorter period, you are required to show $1,250 NZD for each month of study.

If you are an incoming study abroad or exchange student who has already pre-paid tuition fees through a study abroad/exchange provider, you are not required to pay additional fees to UC before arrival.

Immigration New Zealand has produced a guide for international students who are working while studying in New Zealand which you may find useful.