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International FAQs

Immigration New Zealand requires you to show $15,000 to cover living expenses for one year (or $1250 per month). 

Many of our students tell us that they spend much less than that, given Invercargill’s low cost of living. 

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We were once students ourselves – some of us still are – so we know that students like free things!  That’s why we provide lots of free student activities throughout the year, like adventure courses, tenpin bowling, barbecues and lunches, sports and culture activities, and bus trips around the region. 

You can also access all our student support services, such as the on-campus nurse, counsellor, learning advisors, employment and activities advisors for free.

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Thanks to strong support from our local community, SIT already keeps fees for international students low.  SIT also offers three flagship scholarship programmes:

  • 24 week English Scholarships for students wanting to improve their English abilities
  • John Wright Academic and Sports Scholarships for students from India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal. 
  • 16 week Accommodation Scholarship - students on the Postgraduate Diploma in Business Enterprise receive free accommodation for 16 weeks while they complete their onsite course studies. This is based on a shared room in one of our apartments. Additional charges apply for any family members living in our apartments.
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The resource fee covers the additional resources that are required to complete the programme without you facing further costs on arrival at SIT.  It also includes arrival services to help you settle in easily.


This resource fee covers numerous items including:

  • Two weeks accommodation
  • Health and travel insurance for the duration of your programme
  • Airport pickup and transportation to accommodation
  • SIT jacket
  • SIT bag
  • First aid kit
  • Phone card with credit to call home on arrival
  • Textbooks (see below)
  • Comprehensive orientation workshop
  • Employment workshop to help you find work
  • Discounted Saturday bus trips around the region, including to Queenstown and Dunedin
  • Printing credit for your SIT student computing account
  • Assistance with student and work visa renewals
  • Access to on-site student services such as health nurse, counsellors, learning assistance, employment support and activities.

To help reduce your costs further, we purchase your textbooks for your programme so you don’t have to.  You can loan these books out from the library for the duration of the semester.  You just return them at the end of the semester – so no pesky books to try and sell at the end of your studies!


Depending on your programme, you may also be given additional resources or equipment to help complete your course.  For example, for the New Zealand Certificate in Hospitality (Cookery), the resource fee will cover your uniform and set of chef knives.

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To obtain your student visa from Immigration New Zealand, you need to pay your fees for the year in full in advance.  So SIT cannot offer instalment payment options. 

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The course fee covers the costs of the course, including teaching materials and access to our Blackboard learning system for notes and course materials.  Costs vary depending whether your programme is a Certificate, Diploma, Degree, Graduate Diploma or Postgraduate Diploma. 

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At SIT, we try and make it as easy as possible to begin studying.  That’s why we do not charge you lots of different fees.  We don’t even charge administration or registration fees! 

The course fee and the resource fee cover the vast majority of your study costs here at SIT. 

Thanks to strong community support, SIT can keep fees for international students low.  You can view our fees here.

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