Fees Free tertiary study

June 2024 update
The Government has updated information on the final-year Fees Free scheme starting from January 2025. The Fees Free policy for 2024 is unchanged.

If you’re looking to study with us for the first time, you may be eligible for fees free support. 

Are you eligible for the fees free study?

To receive fees free support, you'll need to meet the relevant eligibility criteria and be enrolled in an eligible course.

To check your eligibility for Provider Based Study, you'll need to go to the Government Fees Free website and enter your National Student Number (NSN). The Fees Free website will also have instructions on what to do if you do not know or have an NSN.

Check your eligibility

Once you've checked that you're eligible, you can now browse our career and study options.

Eligibility results

Once you've entered your NSN, you’ll receive one of the following results:

  • Yes – you're eligible for fees free
  • No – you're not eligible for fees free
  • Maybe – not sure if you're eligible for fees free

If you get a no as an eligibility status, you can apply for a Student Loan or Allowance. For more information on Student Loans and Allowances visit the StudyLink website. We also have a range of scholarships, grants, and awards available, all with a wide variety of criteria that can help with funding your study. For more information on our scholarships, grants, and awards, visit our Scholarships and Awards page

Those who get a maybe eligibility status, but meet the eligibility criteria, need to complete and submit a statutory declaration for Provider Based Study to be eligible for fees free. Instructions for completing the statutory declaration form are on the Fees Free website. We encourage you to do this as soon as possible, so there are no disruptions to your studies.

What does fees free cover?

Fees Free covers:

Fees Free does not cover other optional and occasional fees. 

What course or programmes are eligible for fees free?

A course or programme needs to meet the following criteria to be eligible for fees free a course must be:

  1. funded by the TEC from either:
    • the SAC level 3 and above fund, or 
    • grants under s321 of the Education Act 1989 for tertiary provision that is part of a qualification or training scheme on the NZQF at level 3 or above, or
    • the Youth Guarantee fund and leads to the award of a qualification on the NZQF at level 3 or above, and 
  2. not part of a school learning programme or secondary-tertiary programme.

Where can I go for more information?

For the latest information visit the Fees Free website or call the fees free helpline on 0800 687 775. 

Frequently asked questions

Are refugees eligible for fees free?

Refugees may be eligible for fees-free study even if they have studied English at a tertiary level. Refugees who have been declined for fees free study can make a new statutory declaration via the TEC Fees Free website. If you are a refugee and you have not applied for fees free study, you can enter your National Student Number via the TEC fees free website and select Provider Based Study, follow the prompts, and if necessary, download a statutory declaration form. Print it off, but don't sign it (yet). You will need to take this form to a Justice of the Peace who will watch you sign the form and certify its authenticity. Then scan the certified document, and email it to feesfreecheck@tec.govt.nz.The TEC will then advise as to whether you can study for free.

How do I apply?

Please go to the Fees Free website to check your eligibility for Provider Based Study, enter your National Student Number and follow the prompts.

What if I change my mind?

No problem, you have the opportunity to withdraw from your chosen programme as outlined in our terms and conditions. If you do not take up your place it is likely that you will be eligible to begin your first year with zero fees at a future time.

Don't know your NSN number?

If you have an NSN number but can't remember what it is, you can see our team of advisors at Student Central or book an appointment with our Student Support Advisors for help.  You can also contact the New Zealand Qualifications Agency (NZQA) on 0800 697 296 (between 8am and 5pm, Monday to Friday) or by email through the NZQA website.

Why did I receive an invoice? I thought it was fees free.

We are required to send you an invoice by mail. If you know you are eligible for fees free study, please keep an eye on your account summary in your student portal. You can find this via Student Self Service under Useful Links. Look in the Finances section.

Support on campus

Fees Free support

You can drop in to Te Pae Kōrero Student Central at the Mt Albert or Waitākere campuses. You may need to wait in the lounge if the team are busy with other students.

Student Central hours and location

StudyLink application support

Student support advisors can help you with your: 

  • Student Loan,
  • Student Allowance, and
  • StudyLink application.

Book an appointment with a Student Support advisor