The New Zealand Government's Student Loan Scheme is administered through StudyLink, a service of the Ministry of Social Development. To apply, you need to be either:

  • A New Zealand citizen, or
  • Ordinarily resident in New Zealand and either:
    • have been living in New Zealand for at least 3 years, and
    • have held a residence class visa for 3 years, or
    • be a refugee or protected person, or
    • be sponsored into New Zealand by someone in your family who, at the time you were sponsored, was a refugee or protected person.

If you are considering applying for a student loan and/or allowance, visit the StudyLink website to check the eligibility criteria:


The University of Otago's only involvement with student loans and allowances is to provide verification of enrolment and fees information to StudyLink so they can assess your eligibility. Revenue Management also provide verification of enrolment and fees information to StudyLink for Pathway students.

You can apply to StudyLink before your enrolment is finalised. StudyLink process around 200,000 applications over summer for the start of the academic year and they can take around eight weeks to process. Applying early gives you time to provide any supporting documents and allows you to get your loan application sorted before the due date for fee payment.

Further information

Future students—What does it cost?

Last updated 10/09/2021 01.47 PM

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