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Immigration & Visa Information

Students catching up on the Clocktower lawn

Information correct as at June 17, 2014

All international students must have a valid student visa to study at the University of Otago.

When renewing your student visa you can either apply on campus, or send your application to Immigration New Zealand (INZ).

 Visa-on-Campus

International students currently studying full time at the University of Otago may be eligible to apply for their visa through Student Visa Services on campus. There are a limited number of exceptions where applications need to be directed to Immigration New Zealand (INZ).

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Who can apply for a Visa-on-Campus

At Otago we are able to process most applications for student visas on campus. There are only a limited number of exceptions, when applications need to be directed to Immigration New Zealand.

We are not able to accept your application for a visa-on-campus if:

  • You do not currently hold a valid visa (study, visit or work).
  • You are not a full-time student, unless you are an undergraduate finalist.
  • You have failed more than a third of your papers since your last student visa application was approved.
  • You are here on the Student Exchange Programme.

If you fall into any of the above categories, you need to apply through Immigration New Zealand (INZ).

Please Note: Immigration New Zealand reserves the right to refuse applications submitted on campus and may request that you resubmit your application directly to the Palmerston North Immigration New Zealand branch.

How to apply for a Visa-on-Campus

  • Please download and complete the Visa-on-Campus Application form. A hard copy of this form is also available for collection from the International Office.
  • Read the Visa-on-Campus Application Information carefully.
  • Applications may usually be submitted directly to Student Visa Services on Monday and Friday between 9.00am and 12.30pm, on Wednesday between 9.30am and 12.30pm, and on Tuesday and Thursday between 1.00pm and 4.00pm.
  • Make sure you include all required documents. Only complete applications will be accepted.
  • Pay the $200 (subject to change) visa fee at the Fees Office. You will need to present an authorisation slip from the Student Visa Services to make this payment.
  • Once your visa application has been processed and approved by INZ, you will receive an e-mail from Student Visa Services to advise you to collect your passport. Passports can be collected on Wednesdays from 9.30am to 12.30pm and Fridays between 9.00am and 12.30pm only.

Processing Time for Visa-on-Campus

Most applications will take between five to thirty days to process.

Some of the factors to affect processing time include:

  • Your application is submitted in a busy period (February, March or July).
  • Findings on Medical or Police Certificates that need further assessment.

Important:

You might be emailed an interim visa from INZ the day after your current visa expires if your passport hasn’t been returned to you by then.

This email must be forwarded to student.visa@otago.ac.nz immediately to avoid losing access to resources.

Please remember:

  • Immigration New Zealand (INZ) holds a record of all previous information and documents supplied by you.
  • It is an offence to provide false or misleading information on your application form.
  • We advise you not to book any overseas travel before your student visa has been issued.

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Work

International university students may be granted permission to work for up to 20 hours in any given week during the academic year if they are:

  • undertaking a full-time, course of study of at least two academic years duration; or
  • undertaking a full-time course of study culminating in a New Zealand qualification that would qualify for points under the Skilled Migrant Category; or
  • undertaking a full-time course of study of at least one academic year duration as part of an approved tertiary exchange scheme;

Students may be granted permission to work full-time during the summer holiday period at the end of each academic year, provided they are undertaking a full-time course of study of 12 months or more duration.

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Student Visa Service

Physical Address

International
University of Otago
Room G02
Archway West building
Dunedin 9016
New Zealand

Tel 64 3 479 4569
Fax 64 3 479 8367
Email student.visa@otago.ac.nz

Postal Address

International
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand

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Apply through Immigration New Zealand (INZ)

If applying directly through INZ, you must use their Student Visa Application form, which can be downloaded from the Study forms and guides section on the INZ website at www.immigration.govt.nz

Please fill in this form and send your complete application to INZ, making sure that you include with your application all required documents - as listed on the form.

Incomplete applications with any information or documents missing will be returned to you unprocessed.

Students submitting their application directly to INZ must include Police and Medical Certificates, if required, with their application. To find out if these are due please call the INZ National Call Centre on 0508 558 855 (toll free) within New Zealand, or 64 9 914 4100 from overseas (toll call). The Call Centre is open from 7am to 7pm, Monday to Friday.

Once your passport has been returned from INZ with your new visa, please take it to the University Information Centre or Student Visa Services office so that we can update our records.

Please courier your application to:

Student Processing Unit
State Insurance Building, Level 6
61-75 Rangitikei Street
Palmerston North 4440

Tel: 0508 558 855 (a free number from a landline telephone only)
      or 09 914 4100 (a toll number from a mobile telephone)
Fax: 06 952 7758
Web: www.immigration.govt.nz

Enquiries made offshore should be directed to your nearest New Zealand Embassy or High Commission.

For more information please visit www.immigration.govt.nz