Preparation & Arrival Information

International Pre-departure Handbook contains useful information to help you prepare for life in New Zealand. Topics cover immigration and visa information, accommodation, important institute policies, insurance, and detailed arrival information.

international pre-departure handbook cover

International Pre-departure Handbook

Download the latest handbook
PDF 1.8 MB updated 13-Jul-2017

If you have any questions that are not answered in the pre-departure guide, please contact the International Centre.

Students with Family

If you have family travelling with you to New Zealand there are additional factors that you will need to consider prior to your arrival.

Please read our Students with Family (PDF 2.9 MB updated 13-Jul-2017) document carefully to ensure your stay in New Zealand will be a wonderful shared experience.
Download your copy of our Students with Family document

Arriving in New Zealand

We can arrange to have you picked up from Auckland or Rotorua airports if you request it in advance.

The International Team will meet with you on your first day and ensure that you are given all the necessary information you need to begin your study and to settle into student life. We promote a bicultural vision and all new students are welcomed with a pohiri (traditional Māori welcome ceremony) at Tangatarua Marae in February and July.

High Quality Education and Support

We are a government owned tertiary education provider registered with the New Zealand Government, and holds Quality Assured status.

We have agreed to observe and be bound by the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students published by the Minister of Education. Copies of the code are available from our main campuses, or from the New Zealand Ministry of Education website at

Helpful Tips

  • If you have a driver’s licence, bring it with you – this makes it easier to obtain a New Zealand licence.
  • Bring about six passport size photos with you.
  • Bring your own sports gear, e.g., squash racquet, badminton racquet, etc. These may cost more in New Zealand. The exception is good quality hockey sticks, which are less expensive in New Zealand.
  • Give up smoking before you arrive. In New Zealand it is illegal to smoke in public areas such as restaurants and bars, and homestays will not allow smoking in their homes.
  • Remember there are weight limits for the luggage you can bring to New Zealand without paying excess baggage fees.
  • Bring your national costume for the international events celebrated on campus – very popular entertainment, fun and a cultural extravaganza!


  • Bring only a little cash
  • Bring travellers cheques to cover your initial expenses
  • Take out a bank draft/withdrawal for larger sums of money

Immigration – Student Visa

If you are going to study in New Zealand for more than 12 weeks you will need to apply for a student visa.

Full details of immigration requirements, advice on rights to employment in New Zealand while studying, and reporting requirements are available from the Immigration New Zealand website at

Recently there have been a few key changes to the work entitlements of certain student visa holders, and the post-study visa options have also changed, view these changes on the NZ Study + Work website

Eligibility for Health Services

Most international students are not entitled to publicly funded health services while in New Zealand. If you receive medical treatment during your visit, you may be liable for the full costs of that treatment. Full details on entitlements to publicly funded health services are available through the Ministry of Health website at

Accident Insurance

The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) provides accident insurance for all New Zealand citizens, residents, and temporary visitors to New Zealand but you may still be liable for all other medical and related costs. Further information can be viewed on the ACC website at

Medical and Travel Insurance

International students, including groups of students, must have appropriate and current medical and travel insurance while in New Zealand. The cost of medical and travel insurance is $558 per year.

Uni-Care is our preferred insurance provider. It is important to understand the inclusions stated in their Policy for the New Zealand Student Plan found at


The following websites can be very helpful in finding employment while in New Zealand:

International Centre Contact Details

Page last updated: 24 Jul 2017