As an international student, you are required by law to hold a valid visa and comply with your visa conditions for the duration of your study at Unitec. It is your primary responsibility to maintain the lawful status to study and live in New Zealand.  It is important to apply for your student visa as soon as possible, as in some cases the manual application process may take a minimum of one month.

To formally be enrolled, all students are required to upload a copy of a valid student visa to study at Unitec, New Zealand. If you do not hold a valid student visa or fail to provide one, your student account may be suspended, your programme of study may be withdrawn and enrolment may be cancelled.

International Students must have a 100% attendance in all their scheduled classes unless there is a genuine and valid reason otherwise- please get in touch with our visa administrator if you are unsure on what is deemed a valid reason. Failure to attend without a doctor's certificate or valid reason may result in the termination of the student's enrolment as outlined by Immigration New Zealand.

Paper Application / Immigration Online (Apply Student Visa directly to Immigration New Zealand)

You can also submit your student visa application directly to Immigration New Zealand by making a paper application or applying through Immigration online

Study Abroad and Exchange

If you are coming to New Zealand as an inbound Study Abroad and Exchange student, you must apply for a student visa prior to your arrival in New Zealand, regardless of any visa waiver requirement between New Zealand and your home country. Only in very special circumstances (as determined by Immigration New Zealand) will a student exchange visa be granted if you are already in New Zealand.

Short Course

International students who enrol in short courses must ensure you have a valid visa to cover the duration of the study. If you are on a visitor visa, you maybe able to  study a short course of 12 weeks or shorter. For more information please visit Can I study in New Zealand? on Immigration website.

Variation of Conditions

You may be able to apply for a variation of conditions if you hold a student visa, a work visa, or a visitor visa. Your application will only be granted if the new conditions would meet the immigration instructions your original visa was issued under.

Student visa holders

You may be able to apply for a variation of conditions to allow you to change the course you are studying and/or the education provider you are studying with, or to allow you to work part-time and/or full-time during your holidays. If you withdraw from your course of study and/or education provider before varying the conditions of your visa, you will be in breach of your visa conditions.

Work and Visitor Visa holders

You may be able to apply for a variation of conditions to allow you to study part-time.
For information on how to apply for Variation of Condition, please click Changing the conditions of your visa. 

Post-study work visa (Open)

If you are a student who has completed a qualification or qualifications in New Zealand, but you do not have a job offer, you may be eligible for a Post-study work visa (open) for a maximum of 12 months. If you have any questions or would like more information, you can contact Visa Administrator or visit the Ask Me Desk (Unitec Mount Albert Hub- Building 180).

To be eligible for a Post-study work visa (open) you must:

  • have successfully completed a qualification in New Zealand that meets the study to work qualification requirements that would qualify for points under the Skilled Migrant Category (see SM14) and is either: 
  • a qualification at level 7 or above on the New Zealand Qualification Framework and you have studied that qualification in New Zealand for at least one academic year; or
  • a two year qualification at level 4 to 6 on the New Zealand Qualification Framework and you have studied that qualification in New Zealand for at least two academic years; or
  • two qualifications at levels 4 to 6 on the New Zealand Qualification Framework that each required at least one academic year study in New Zealand, provided the second qualification is at a higher level (two years study in New Zealand in total).
  • apply no later than three months (six months if you have completed a doctoral qualification) after the end date of the student visa for that qualification
  • provide evidence of a minimum of NZ$4,200 available to maintain yourself during your 12-month stay in New Zealand (we will accept traveller's cheques or bank documents in your name).

For more information on this visa, please click Requirements under Study to Work category.

Useful Immigration Tools and Links

NZ Ready – Planning tool to help you move to and settle in New Zealand

NZ Study Work – Summarize the key things you should know (available in English, Chinese and Korean)

New Zealand Now – Your guide to living and working in New Zealand

Visa-Waiver Countries – Check if you are from a country which does not need to a visa before travelling to New Zealand

Immigration New Zealand Knowledge Base – Immigration Q&A

Immigration New Zealand –  Immigration New Zealand Website