Make your New Zealand Student Visa
process effortless

Learn everything you need to know about New Zealand Student Visa
and get end to end expert guidance from us.
Make your New Zealand Visa process effortless
Learn everything you need to know about New Zealand Student Visa and get end to end expert guidance from us.

Book your FREE consultation with Certified Counsellors


New Zealand Student Visa from Nigeria

New Zealand is a beautiful country with stunning landscapes, friendly people and a high-quality education system. For Nigerian students, studying in New Zealand offers the opportunity to experience a new culture, make lifelong friends and gain a world-class education. The New Zealand government has recently announced changes to its immigration policies, including updates to the student visa process for Nigerian students. These changes aim to support the international education sector and provide opportunities for international students in New Zealand. Studying in New Zealand is an exciting and rewarding experience, and Nigerian students are encouraged to explore the many opportunities available to them.

The New Zealand student visa is officially called the Fee-Paying Student Visa. This visa is for international students who are pursuing a full-term course with a duration of more than three months at a New Zealand university. To apply for this visa, students must pay the full cost of their courses and enrol with an approved education provider. The visa is valid for up to 4 years and costs NZD 3751. With this visa, students can study full-time at the course stated on their visa, work part-time up to 20 hours a week while studying or full-time in the holidays (depending on their visa conditions) and live by themselves above a certain age (otherwise, they will need to come with their parent or legal guardian).

If students want to bring their partner or children with them, they can apply for visas based on their relationship with the student. The student visa is normally issued for the same length of time as the study that has been paid for, but it may be issued for a shorter time if the student’s passport expires before the end date of their study.

Taking the first step towards studying in New Zealand from Nigeria can be a transformative experience. From understanding the types of visas available to the costs involved, this page will shed light on all the essential information you need.

Latest Updates on New Zeland Student Visa for Nigerian Students

  • Student and Visitor visa processing has been reinstated on 31 July 2022 rather than in October as previously announced.
  • The government has announced changes to immigration settings arising from its immigration rebalance work.
  • Key changes for the international education sector include post-study work rights for international students and other student visa settings.
  • The recent border exception for up to 5,000 international students (cohort 4) will continue as planned, with the first students on track to begin arriving in New Zealand soon.
  • International students studying bachelor’s or post-graduate courses or higher will continue to receive Post-Study Work Visas.
  • Students studying non-degree courses at Level 7 and below (excluding bachelor’s degrees) will only be eligible for post-study work rights if the qualification is relevant to an occupation on the new Green List, which will replace the existing skills shortage lists.
  • These work rights will only allow them to work in that occupation. The duration of work rights will reflect the duration of study undertaken in New Zealand, except for Masters and PhD students who retain the current setting of 3 years.
  • International students will no longer be able to apply for a second post-study work visa.
  • There are no changes to in-study work rights for student visa holders.
  • The amount of funds that students are required to demonstrate they have access to so they can cover their living expenses while in New Zealand will increase. 
  • For tertiary and English language students, the funds required will be $20,000 pa, and for primary and secondary school students, it will be $17,000 pa. These funds are prorated for study less than a year. The current setting is $15,000pa for both.

Types of New Zealand Student Visa

For Nigerians keen on studying in New Zealand, understanding the different student visas available is vital. For many students in Nigeria, the decision to study in New Zealand offers a chance to receive a top-tier education in a diverse and welcoming environment. Before embarking on this exciting journey, it's essential to understand the types of student visas available. New Zealand, known for its world-class institutions, provides various visa types tailored to different academic aspirations and durations. Choosing the right visa type is the foundation of a successful educational experience. Here, we provide a comprehensive guide to understanding the nuances of each visa type, ensuring Nigerian students can make an informed decision.

Each visa type caters to different academic pursuits and durations. Here's a breakdown to guide your choices:

Types of Study Visas


Duration to Stay

Fee Paying Student Visa

For full-time courses in NZ

Up to 4 years

Exchange Student Visa

For approved student exchange schemes

Duration of the exchange

Pathway Student Visa

Study up to 3 consecutive courses on 1 student visa

Up to 5 years


How much does a New Zealand Student Visa cost from Nigeria?

Apart from the excitement of experiencing a new culture and academic system, studying in New Zealand comes with its financial considerations. The cost of living, tuition fees and visa fees collectively define the
study in New Zealand costs for Nigerian students. While scholarships can offset tuition fees, it's crucial to understand the visa application costs. This section delves into the various fees associated with different student visas, offering a transparent look into financial planning for prospective students.

To budget accurately for your study in New Zealand, being informed about the visa costs is fundamental. Here's a breakdown of the New Zealand Student Visa fee for different Student Visas:

Types of Visas

Average Fee (in NZD)

Fee Paying Student Visa

NZD 275

Exchange Student Visa

NZD 165

Pathway Student Visa

NZD 495



New Zealand Student Visa Requirements

Every dream to study in New Zealand begins with a checklist. This list isn't just about the institutions or courses but extends to visa requirements. New Zealand's educational standards are matched by its meticulous visa process, ensuring only the most dedicated students get the chance to experience its academic prowess. From proof of funds to the course's acceptance letter, the study in New Zealand requirements is a roadmap that every Nigerian student must navigate. This section offers a detailed breakdown of New Zealand Student Visa requirements, ensuring no crucial detail is overlooked.

To study in New Zealand, one must meet the specific country’s Student Visa requirements:

  • Offer of place from an NZ educational institution
  • Proof of sufficient funds to live on
  • Return air ticket or sufficient funds to buy one
  • Health and character certificates
  • Proof you've paid the tuition fees or have a scholarship
  • If under 18, a guarantee of accommodation
  • A passport valid for at least 3 months after your planned departure from New Zealand
  • Two passport-sized photos
  • A written statement (SOP) explaining course choice
  • Medical insurance while in New Zealand

English Proficiency Tests for New Zealand Student Visa

Securing a student visa for New Zealand also requires evidence of proficiency in the English language. Different levels of study demand varying levels of English skills.

Language is the bridge to understanding, more so in an academic environment. For non-native English speakers, New Zealand mandates proof of proficiency to ensure smooth communication in classrooms. It's not just about speaking but understanding complex academic terminologies. Whether it's the IELTS, TOEFL, or any other recognised test, Nigerian students need to be aware of the required scores to study in New Zealand. This section aims to guide students through these requirements, ensuring they meet the necessary standards.

Level of study

English skill level


IELTS 6.0 overall


IELTS 6.5 overall


IELTS 7.0 overall


Which documents are required for a New Zealand Student Visa?

Documentary proof is the cornerstone of any visa application. When aiming to study in New Zealand, Nigerian students must arm themselves with a slew of documents, each proving a different facet of their eligibility. From academic records showcasing your dedication as a student to financial documents proving your capability to sustain yourself, the study in New Zealand requirements are exhaustive but necessary. This segment offers a checklist, ensuring no document is left behind in your application process.

Preparing for your student visa application involves collating the right documents. This ensures a smoother application process and better chances of approval. You'll need all the aforementioned requirements in the form of official documents.

Please note that requirements might differ depending on specific courses, institutions, or updates in the visa policy.

  • Completed Student Visa Application Form: You'll need to fill out the New Zealand student visa application form accurately.
  • Passport: Your passport should be valid for at least three months beyond your planned departure date from New Zealand.
  • Passport-sized photographs: Typically, two recent passport-sized photographs are needed.
  • Offer of Place: A letter from an educational institution in New Zealand confirming your acceptance. This letter should detail the course's name, the duration, and whether a course fee is domestic or foreign.
  • Proof of Tuition Fee Payment: A receipt showcasing that you have paid the tuition fee or a letter from an institution confirming that your fees are a post-study payment.
  • Proof of Sufficient Funds: Bank statements or documents that prove you can support yourself financially during your stay. This is to ensure you can pay for living expenses, return airfare and further tuition.
  • Health Insurance Receipt: You must have appropriate health insurance coverage for your stay in New Zealand.
  • Health Certificate: Depending on the duration and location of your studies, you might need a medical certificate or a chest X-ray.
  • Police Clearance Certificate: A certificate from the police in countries you've lived in for five years or more, proving you have a good character.
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP): A written statement detailing the reason for choosing New Zealand and the particular institution, course details, and future plans.
  • Proof of English Proficiency: IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE scores, depending on the institution's requirements. Some institutions might offer waivers or accept alternative exams.
  • Guarantor's/Custodian's Details: For students under 18, details of a person in New Zealand who can be their guardian.
  • Previous Academic Records: Certificates, diplomas, degrees and transcripts from schools and tertiary institutions.
  • Visa Application Fee: A receipt that shows you have paid the visa application fee.

It's crucial to always check the latest requirements on the official New Zealand Immigration website or consult with an educational agency or the New Zealand embassy/consulate in Nigeria before starting the application process.


How to apply for my New Zealand Student Visa Online?

The allure of studying in New Zealand has captivated many Nigerian students, and rightly so. But every dream needs a roadmap, and for this particular dream, it's the visa application process. Step by step, from collating documents to attending interviews, each phase is crucial. This section is designed as a guide, helping Nigerian students navigate the intricate process of applying for a student visa turning their dream to study in New Zealand into a reality.

Here's a systematic breakdown:

  • Secure an offer from a NZ educational institution.
  • Prepare all necessary documents.
  • Complete the application on the New Zealand Immigration website.
  • Pay the required visa fee.
  • Attend a visa interview if called upon.
  • Await a decision from the New Zealand Immigration Department.


Processing Time for the New Zealand Student Visa

Time is of the essence, especially when planning to
study in New Zealand. The anticipation following a visa application is palpable, with students eager to embark on their academic journey. It's beneficial for Nigerian students to be aware of the  New Zealand Student Visa processing times, allowing for better planning. From understanding the different streams to knowing how long each might take, this section offers clarity on the timeline Nigerian students can expect when applying.

Every aspirant wonders about the waiting period for visa approval.


50% of Applications Finalised Within

75% of Applications Finalised Within

90% of Applications Finalised Within


3 weeks

5 weeks

8 weeks


2 weeks

4 weeks

6 weeks


4 weeks

6 weeks

9 weeks


How to Write SOP for a New Zealand Student Visa?

An SOP or Statement of Purpose isn’t merely a document; it’s the voice of a Nigerian student yearning to study in New Zealand
. Crafting a compelling SOP can be the difference between an acceptance and a rejection. While academic credentials are crucial, the SOP offers a glimpse into the student's passion, drive, and aspirations. This section provides invaluable insights and steps to pen down an SOP that resonates with visa officers, showcasing your genuine intent to study in New Zealand.

A Statement of Purpose (SOP) can significantly influence your visa application. It's a chance to convey your motivations and aspirations.

  • Begin with a brief introduction about yourself.
  • Explain why you chose New Zealand as your study destination.
  • Detail your course choice and its relevance to your future career.
  • Discuss past academic and relevant achievements.
  • Conclude by stating your post-study plans.

New Zealand Student Visa Rejection

While the prospect of studying in New Zealand is enticing, it's essential for Nigerian students to be aware of potential roadblocks. Understanding the reasons behind visa rejections can be enlightening, allowing students to be better prepared and avoid common pitfalls. Whether it's discrepancies in documents or inadequate financial proof, knowledge is power. This section delves deep into the common reasons for rejection, ensuring that your path to study in New Zealand is as smooth as possible.

There are several reasons why a student visa for New Zealand may be rejected for Nigerian students. Some of the common reasons include:

  • Poor performance in visa interview: A student visa interview is an opportunity to communicate with a visa officer and explain why you want to study in New Zealand. If you provide unclear or unnecessary information or if you do not communicate effectively with the interviewer, your visa application may be rejected.
  • Failure to prove English proficiency: Many universities in New Zealand require students to prove their English language proficiency by taking an English test such as IELTS, TOEFL, or PTE. If you cannot convince the visa officer of your English skills, your visa application may be rejected.
  • Submission of incorrect or incomplete documents: During the student visa application process, students must submit the required documents as specified on the official New Zealand student website. If you miss any documents or attempt to submit fake documents, your visa application may be rejected.
  • Unclear explanations for landing in New Zealand: Some students are rejected when they cannot provide a valid explanation for their landing in New Zealand. If the officers feel that the applicants want to gain employment in the country illegally, their visas will be rejected if the students fail to provide proof that they are only going to the country to study.

It is important for Nigerian students to understand these reasons and take steps to avoid them when applying for a student visa in New Zealand.

Renewal of New Zealand Student Visa

Renewing a New Zealand Student Visa is a straightforward process. Most students must renew their student visa each year, and this can be done either online or by paper. Before applying for renewal, students must provide evidence of their academic performance, progress, and attendance, which is provided by their education provider. It is important to note that a student’s visa may not be renewed if they have not passed their course, although this depends on the reasons for failing and the likelihood of failing again. 

The renewal process is the same as applying for a student visa, with the exception of the Pathway Student Visa, which gives students up to 5 years of study on 3 different courses one after another and does not need to be renewed if all course requirements are met. Nigerian students renewing a student visa that is still valid or has expired within the past 24 months can qualify for a no-interview renewal procedure if they are physically in Nigeria and are renewing their visa to continue participation in the same major course of study or attend the same institution even if in a different major course of study.

Your study journey might need more time. Renewing your student visa is straightforward. Begin the process at least three months before expiration, ensure you meet all current requirements and demonstrate good academic standing.


How Can AECC Help in Your Visa Application?

AECC has a team of professionals who will make sure that students are fully informed about the latest criteria and conditions for their New Zealand Visa and will guide them to the official websites and authorised immigration officials to ensure that they get the latest application formats and guidelines. Our professionals will also help students arrange all the necessary documents and apply easily, ensuring that they apply at the right time without making any mistakes.

The journey to study in New Zealand is laden with intricate details and procedures. Having a guide can make this path more interesting. AECC, with its expertise in visa applications, is that guiding light for many Nigerian students. From understanding the nuances of documentation to prepping for interviews, AECC's comprehensive assistance ensures that your dream to study in New Zealand is in safe hands.

To ensure a hassle-free New Zealand student visa process, get in touch with our counsellors at AECC right away! 

Frequently asked questions

Is IELTS Required for a New Zealand Student Visa?

Yes, IELTS is typically required, but specific scores may vary based on the institution and course.

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