Organise Your Student Visa and Immigration Requirements

Applying for a Student Visa

Congratulations on your journey to Christchurch!

To study in New Zealand, a valid student visa is essential. The New Zealand Government issues student visas for full-time study, provided you have sufficient funds for study and living expenses. The application process varies by country, and it's crucial to meet specific regulations before obtaining a visa.

If you wish to study in New Zealand you must have a valid student visa. The New Zealand Government issues student visas for full time study on the understanding that you have sufficient funds for study and living expenses for the duration of your stay in New Zealand. There are regulations that must be met before a student visa can be issued and these vary from country to country. Information about how to apply for your student visa can be obtained from your Education Agent or the nearest New Zealand Embassy or Consulate in your country. Student visas can take significant time to issue, please ensure that you leave sufficient time to obtain your visa.


You should apply for your student visa online. Please contact Immigration New Zealand for more information regarding student visas.

All student visa applications are assessed by the New Zealand Government according to:

  • Evidence of funds to support yourself

  • Medical/Health requirements

  • Character requirements

  • Letter of Offer from UCIC (or Confirmation of Enrolment if you are renewing your visa)

  • Proof of payment of UCIC fees

Keeping and Understanding a Student Visa

Compliance with visa conditions is crucial. Familiarise yourself with current visa regulations on the Immigration New Zealand website - migrant/stream/study

Change of Education Provider

If you wish to change your programme of study and/or education provider you must first obtain a variation of conditions (or a further student visa). If you change your programme of study and/or education provider before obtaining authority to do so, you will be in breach of your visa conditions. This may jeopardise your ability to be granted further visas, or a variation of conditions, and you may become liable for deportation. Please see for further details, or speak to UCIC Admissions.


You must maintain enough money to pay for tuition and living expenses for yourself, your spouse and your dependent children for the duration of your stay in New Zealand.

Under 18 Students

For students under 18, accommodation options include staying with a parent/legal guardian, an authorised designated caregiver, or a UCIC arranged homestay. UCIC will coordinate care and support, regularly updating parents on academic progress and general wellbeing.

Under 18 students at the time of visa application must have approved welfare and accommodation arrangements in place and must maintain these arrangements until they turn 18.

In order to fully meet our obligations under the The Education (Pastoral Care of Tertiary and International Learners) Code of Practice 2021, UC International College requires students who are under 18 years old to live in one of the following types of accommodation:

  • With the Student’s Parent/Legal Guardian

  • With an Authorised Designated Caregiver
    (A Designated Caregiver must be a relative or a close family friend, authorised in writing by a Parent/Legal Guardian, be over 18 years of age and police vetted)

  • With a UCIC Arranged Homestay (UN18 must stay in the CCEL provided Homestay)

UC International College will:

  • Notify the parent/s or legal guardian/s if their Son/Daughter is involved in an accident, any critical events or an emergency.

  • Obtain information from the hospital regarding your Son/Daughter’s condition to help us coordinate care and support for them, if consent is provided.

  • Provide, monitor and coordinate care and support for your Son or Daughter while they are under 18 years of age.

  • Report to the parent/s or legal guardian/s of students under 18 at least once a semester about their Son/Daughter’s academic progress, attendance, accommodation, general health and wellbeing.

You must advise UCIC immediately if your living circumstances change, and any change in your living situation must be approved in writing by your parents and UCIC before the changes are made.

For more information on arranging your accommodation, please contact UCIC Admissions.

Students with Families

If you have family members that will accompany you to New Zealand there are immigration requirements that must be met. Further information about immigration requirements are available at

For children between the ages of 5 and 18, you are required to make adequate schooling arrangements for them while they are in New Zealand. Students must note that New Zealand government and private schools charge fees. Further information about enrolling your child at a school can be obtained by contacting the Ministry of Education, telephone (+64 4) 463 8000 or visit

If you have a spouse travelling with you and they wish to study, they may study up to 3 months. If they want to study beyond 3 months then it is an Immigration New Zealand requirement that your spouse enrols in an appropriate programme and applies for a student visa of their own right.

Student Visa Conditions

Student visas are granted subject to a number of mandatory and discretionary conditions. International students are required to comply with these conditions while studying in New Zealand.

Academic Progress

Students must make satisfactory academic progress each semester. Failure to achieve this will lead to students being "at risk" of not completing the programme within the expected duration as stated in your offer letter and the Confirmation of Enrolment.


International students must attend at least 90% of all scheduled classes during the semester. If illness or personal problems prevent you from maintaining 90% attendance at classes during the semester you must seek advice from a Student Adviser as soon as possible. Please also see the Attendance Policy, available on the policies page.

Providing Your Contact Details in New Zealand

Students must advise UCIC of your home address and phone number in New Zealand within seven (7) days of arriving in New Zealand. Also, if you change your address or phone number during your stay in New Zealand, you must advise UCIC within seven days.

More Information

Entry Requirements