Important Facts to Know Before Studying in New Zealand

A top-class education, college life and the adventures of living abroad make up the unforgettable experiences for international students. If you are unsure of studying and living in New Zealand you can check these boxes and then some. As we will see, there’s more to this country than being home to the All Blacks or having been the set location for The LOTR movie trilogy.

World Class Qualification

A New Zealand degree qualification is immediately recognised by global employers. It will open doors to live and work anywhere in the world. There are 8 universities in the country and they rank in the Top 500 universities according to QS World University Rankings 2021

These universities also rank subject-wise in the top 500 for Engineering and Technology, Computer Science and Information Systems, Business Management Studies, Life Sciences and Medicine according to the most recent QS World University Rankings by Subject.

If enrolling in a University is too expensive, New Zealand has around 700 private institutions, offering vocational courses in a wide range of disciplines. VET courses are certificate, diploma and advanced diploma courses at level 3-7 on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF). A worldwide trusted NZQF qualification will open up lucrative employment opportunities to many countries that have skill-shortages in your respective discipline.

Cost of Living

For international students, the biggest expense will be tuition and accommodation.

There are a few scholarships available for international students by the New Zealand government – make it a point to apply a year early before the deadline. Apply in advance for a part-time job. Students can work up to 40 hours a week. As employers get overwhelmed by job inquiries at year-end, letting them know of your interest early, at least by September, can get your foot in the door. Shared accommodation ranges from hostels, homestays or apartment-style accommodation. Living in a flat can be an affordable living arrangement as the rent and utilities will be shared among your flatmates. Eating-in is cheaper, but if you have to eat out, look for student discounts. Restaurants and cafes offer ‘specials’ at off-peak hours for cheaper. Make use of your student or university card to qualify for discounts. Explore more ways to save as an international student in New Zealand in this money hub article.

Work Opportunities

Following graduation, depending on the location and discipline, students will have the option to apply for a work visa or an employer-assisted visa. The work visa will allow students to work for 1-3 years. If you decide to stay and work, chances are that you might have to move to a job creation hotspot like Wellington, Auckland, or Christchurch. Relocation is expensive. Therefore, budgeting and saving during your student life are important. Engaging in part-time work, internships or volunteer work related to your field of study will help you gain an edge on your resume. It also pays to find out if your chosen field is on the skill-shortage list to increase your chances of work-visa approval. Top fields in demand due to skill-shortage include Construction and Engineering, Healthcare and Social Services, Education, IT and Software Development, and Hospitality and Tourism.


Great Place to Live

In a Wellbeing survey, published in June 2019, 81.1per cent of Kiwis rated their overall life satisfaction as 7/10 or above. In 2017, ranked 9th in terms of social progress, New Zealand was declared as one of the top 10 places to live in the world – over-performing on indicators such as press freedom, corruption, tolerance for immigrants, and low pollution. The country is surrounded by nature wherever you go – without compromising on modern amenities.

The country is also notably progressive in other ways. New Zealand was the first country in the world to give women the right to vote. The Kiwi nation is moving towards using 90% of its energy from renewable sources by 2025. New Zealanders go further than any other country to honor and encourage indigenous practices. You can see the shared pride among both Maori and natives of European descent when performing the ‘Haka’ at rugby tournaments and other events.

Although not as popular as its neighbour, New Zealand proves competitive in terms of education, high quality of life, employment opportunities and recreation activities. If you are adventurous and looking to write your own story on your own terms, New Zealand is for you.

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