10 tips for studying abroad in New Zealand

Student sitting outside on wall

10 study abroad tips

Take your time when choosing the right university 

Before you even begin your study abroad journey, you need to make sure you’re applying to the right university for you. Spend some time researching different university options on the internet or talk to an education advisor to learn more about some of your options. Some things to think about at this stage include degree and module descriptions, league table rankings, learning facilities, graduate employability stats, accommodation options and location. 

Decide what learning environment is for you 

Differences in modules and degrees aren’t the only things you have to think about when choosing a university. If you want to make sure you’ll get the most out of your degree, as well as have fun, you need to make sure you’ll enjoy your learning environment. Do you prefer a quiet, tranquil atmosphere? Or will you thrive in a busy city environment? By living in a study environment that both inspires and drives you, you’ll enjoy your time both inside and outside the classroom. 

Think about the future 

Think about how your chosen university can help you in your future career. For example, the University of Auckland is a leading university for graduate employability – ranking 68th in the world and 1st in New Zealand (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2022) for graduate prospects. By studying here, you can access student careers services to develop your employability skills alongside your academic studies. 

Leave enough time to apply for your visa 

The most important part of studying abroad for any international student is ensuring the visa application process goes as smoothly as possible. Give yourself plenty of time to apply for your visa in case there are any delays. You will need your visa to attend university and secure any accommodation in New Zealand. 

Secure your accommodation before you arrive 

To make sure you get off to the best possible start when at university in New Zealand, book your accommodation as soon as possible. Having a base for your studies as soon as you arrive is important. Your university or institution will be able to advise you on this process and even offer accommodation options to choose from. 

Set a spending budget 

Whether it’s before you arrive or once you’re settled in your new home, a spending budget is a great decision for any first-time student. Having fun and enjoying a healthy social life is an important part of your university experience, but so is moderation. At the beginning of each week, month or term (whichever works best for you), plan how much you want to spend on food, socialising, study supplies and travel. You can track your spending on paper or digitally through your computer or using apps. Not only will this ensure you don’t run into any problems but will set you up for future success as you’ll know how to handle your finances once you’re employed. 

Create a study schedule 

If you really want to get the most out of your degree, create and stick to a study schedule. University degrees are a big jump from your high school experience and it might take a while for you to adjust. Your university lecturers (or teachers at Taylors College if you’re starting with a pathway programme) will be able to support you during this transitional period, but being able to complete self-guided study will ensure you do well in your degree. 

Join clubs and societies 

When you study in New Zealand, you will meet so many new people – locals and other international students alike! The first two places you’ll meet these new friends are in your classes and in your new accommodation. However, if you want to expand your social circle even more, you should consider joining clubs and societies based on your interests. This is a great way to meet new people as you will have a shared interest or connection already. 

As well as meeting new people, clubs and societies are a great way to try more things and develop new skills. This could be anything from sports to languages or more general interests such as films and books. 

Study a pathway programme

Everyone’s study abroad journey is different and what works for one person might not work for another. If you are still hoping to study in New Zealand but would like additional academic and English support, or do not meet university entry requirements, you can choose to study at Taylors College Auckland first before progressing to the University of Auckland. Taylors College graduates are more likely to succeed on their chosen degree at the University.

Enjoy yourself 

Although all these study abroad tips are useful, the most important one is to enjoy yourself. Going to university in New Zealand is all about what you make of it. You have the opportunity to shape your study experience to be perfect for you. Maybe you want to spend your weekends exploring the rest of the country or find an internship to further develop your career skills – whatever it is that interests you, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and try new things.

Frequently asked questions

Is New Zealand good for studying abroad?

New Zealand is a great place to study as an international student. With welcoming locals, a globally recognised educational system, and great graduate career opportunities, you are sure to enjoy your time spent here.

Which degree is best in New Zealand?

The most important thing to consider when applying to university, whether it is abroad in New Zealand or in your home country, is to choose a subject that you genuinely enjoy studying.

Is it easy to study in New Zealand?

To study in New Zealand as an international student, you will need a valid student visa. Make sure to do your research properly in order to obtain this important document.