FAQs 2015-06-25T11:04:06+00:00

Information on Driving in NZ

For information and advice on driving laws, driver licensing requirements, and road traffic safety, including pedestrian and cycling safety, contact Land Transport Safety Authority (LTSA) New Residents and visitors — driving in New Zealand – or visit their website. www.ltsa.govt.nz/factsheets/56.html

Health and Travel Insurance


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, and can be viewed on their website at www.moh.govt.nz


The Accident Compensation Corporation 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 www.acc.co.nz

International students must have appropriate and current medical and travel insurance while studying in New Zealand. This must be in place, and checked by Taruna before the enrolment can be confirmed.

Guidelines for Travel and Health Insurance

Generally, students should have combined travel and medical insurance on one policy, but separate policies are permitted.

Travel insurance policy components

Where students have separate travel and medical insurance policies, the travel insurance policy should cover:

  • Loss of baggage and other personal effects
  • Accident and injury
  • Disruption to travel plans
  • Cost of medical care in any “stopover” countries.

Suggested minimum content for appropriate insurance policies

Start of cover

The policy should:

  • Commence the minute the student leaves home for the airport on their way to New Zealand
  • Apply while in transit
  • Apply while the student is in New Zealand
  • Cover the student for any trips to other countries during the period of study
  • Cover the student for any holidays back to their home country during the period of study.

If you are enrolling and are already in New Zealand, we require proof of insurance prior to confirmation of enrolment.

High sums insured and medical benefits

“Sums insured” is the money available in the event of a claim. It is imperative that the sums insured are very high so they will not be exceeded in any possible claim. Current policies range from $600,000 to “unlimited cover”. In order to “future proof” policies, sums insured of one million dollars plus are suggested.

Medical benefits generally range from general practitioner visits and prescriptions through to major hospitalisation (both public and private), optical cover and emergency dental cover.

It is preferable that no excess is applied to medical claims as this can discourage you from seeking treatment.

Emergency evacuation/repatriation

Repatriation represents the cost of getting the student home.

The benefit works two ways:

  • If the student becomes seriously ill or injured and needs to be accompanied home (either alive or deceased) with medical professionals these costs are met by the insurance company.
  • If members of the student’s immediate family living overseas become critically ill or die, the policy will fly the student home, and then back to New Zealand to complete their studies.

Ideally the policy should have “unlimited cover” as very large sums can be incurred in these situations.

Accompanying relative cover

If an overseas student in New Zealand becomes seriously ill or dies the policy should pay for parents to fly to New Zealand on the first available flight. The day-to-day accommodation and reasonable living costs in New Zealand for the parents should be met, as should the cost of their airfares home.

Personal effects

Insurance should cover students’ personal effects, including items like expensive musical instruments, lap top computers, and sporting equipment.Limits should be realistic but able to be increased to represent the actual value of particular items.

Personal liability cover

This benefit applies when a student causes accidental damage to property at an education provider or homestay (e.g. breaking expensive laboratory equipment, spilling paint on the carpet).

While persons affected could claim on their insurance, their insurance company should be provided with details of the student’s insurance to recover costs from the student’s insurer.

Desirable additional policy components

Loss of fees due to emergencies

This benefit should cover fees that are lost due to unforeseen events that are insured and unrecoverable from any other source.

For example:

  • The student is ill, injured, or deceased in New Zealand and unable to complete a course
  • Travel delay occurs en route to New Zealand
  • A relative becomes critically ill, injured, or dies in the student’s home country.

Fee payment should be recoverable, or tuition reinstated.

Mental illness

Mental illness is generally excluded from “standard” travel and medical insurance cover. However, some in-bound student plans offer varying amounts of mental illness cover.

Continuation option

Travel insurance usually ends when the student has returned to their home country. We recommend that you ask your insurer if a continuation option is available if a student needs to return to his/her home country because of illness or injury during the policy period and is able to use the policy for on-going treatment until the policy has expired.

Implementation of compulsory medical and travel insurance

Compulsory insurance affects three categories of students:

  • New students who will be coming to New Zealand in 2012
  • Students currently enrolled in a New Zealand education provider who are not insured
  • Students on short courses

Taruna requires proof of your insurance cover as part of the enrolment process. We are required to retain a record of the insurer and policy number of all International Students, which may be used in the event of an emergency.

Taruna must know at all times which insurance each student has and what the expiry date of that insurance is.

The student is asked to provide sufficient information about their insurance policies that enable Taruna to check:

  1. The insurer/re-insurer is a reputable and established company with substantial experience in the travel insurance business, and has an excellent credit rating. AAA is the highest credit rating. The credit rating should be no lower than A from Standard and Poors, or B+ from A M Best.
  2. The insurer is able to provide emergency 24-hour, 7 day per week cover.
  3. Students have a “certificate of currency” and policy wording from the insurance company stating that the student has purchased the cover for the duration of the planned period of study (e.g. start date 02/02/10 until 02/02/11). The certificate and policy wording must also detail medical sums insured, repatriation benefits etc. This is standard insurance practice to validate cover.

If the insurer is an overseas company, we request the policy details are provided in English.

Pastoral Care of International Students

Taruna has 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 on request from this institution or from the New Zealand Ministry of Education website at http://www.minedu.govt.nz.

A Summary of the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students is listed in Appendix 1.

Taruna has appointed the Taruna Manager as the Taruna Administrator of the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students.  Taruna has appointed the Taruna Office Administrator as the Accommodation Administrator of the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students.

Summary Code of Practice

for the Pastoral Care of International Students


When students from other countries come to study in New Zealand, it is important that those students are well informed, safe, and properly cared for.  New Zealand educational providers have an important responsibility for international students’ welfare.

This pamphlet provides an overview of the “Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students” (the Code), and provides a procedure that students can follow if they have concerns about their treatment by a New Zealand educational provider or agent of a provider.

What is the Code?

The Code is a document that provides a framework for service delivery by educational providers and their agents to international students.  The Code sets out the minimum standards of advice and care that are expected of educational providers with respect to international students. The Code applies to pastoral care and provision of information only, and not to academic standards.

Who does the Code apply to?

The Code applies to all education providers in New Zealand with international students enrolled. The Code is mandatory to these providers and must be signed by them.

What is an “international student”?

An “international student” is a foreign student studying in New Zealand.

How can I get a copy of the Code?

You can download a copy of the Code from the Ministry of Education website at www.minedu.govt.nz/codeofpractice

How do I know if an education provider has signed the Code?

The New Zealand Ministry of Education maintains a register of all signatories to the Code. This is available online from www.minedu.govt.nz/international.  If the education provider that you are seeking to enrol with is not a signatory to the Code, you will not be  able to study at that institution.

What do I do if something goes wrong?

If you have concerns about your treatment by your education provider or by an agent of the provider, the first thing you must do is contact the principal, the international student director, or another person who has been identified to you as someone that you can approach about complaints at your institution. The Code requires all institutions to have fair and equitable internal grievance procedures for students and you need to go through these internal processes before you can take the complaint any further.

If your concerns are not resolved by the internal grievance procedures, you can contact the International Education Appeal Authority (IEAA).

What is the International Education Appeal Authority (IEAA)?

The IEAA is an independent body established to deal with complaints from international students about pastoral care aspects of advice and services received from their education provider or the provider’s agents.  The IEAA enforces the standards in the Code of Practice.

How can I contact the IEAA?

You can write to the IEAA at:

International Education Appeal Authority
Tribunal Unit
Private Bag 32
Panama Street,
Wellington 6146

Phone: +64 4 462 6660

Fax: +64 4 462 6686

Email: ieaa@justice.govt.nz


What will the IEAA do?

The purpose of the IEAA is to adjudicate on complaints from international students. The IEAA will investigate complaints and determine if there has been a breach of the Code. The IEAA has the power to impose sanctions on education providers who have committed a breach of the Code that is not a serious breach.  These sanctions include an order for restitution, publication of the breach, and/or requiring that remedial action be undertaken.

The IEAA will refer complaints that are not about pastoral care to another regulatory body if appropriate.

The education provider will be given a reasonable time to remedy the breach. If the breach is not remedied within that time, the IEAA may refer the complaint to the Review Panel.

The IEAA can determine if it considers that a breach of the Code is a serious breach.  If the breach is a serious breach, the IEAA will refer the complaint to the Review Panel.

What can the Review Panel do?

The Review Panel can remove or suspend an education provider as a signatory to the Code, meaning that the provider would be prevented from taking any more international students. Only the IEAA can refer complaints to the Review Panel.

A summary of the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students

The Code sets standards for education providers to ensure that:

  • high professional standards are maintained
  • the recruitment of international students is undertaken in an ethical and responsible manner
  • information supplied to international students is comprehensive, accurate, and up-to-date
  • students are provided with information prior to entering into any commitments
  • contractual dealings with international students are conducted in an ethical and responsible manner
  • the particular needs of international students are recognised
  • international students are in safe accommodation
  • all providers have fair and equitable internal procedures for the resolution of international student grievances

Full details of what is covered can be found in the Code itself. The New Zealand Ministry of Education is the Administrator of the code. If you have any inquiries about the code, you can email info.code@minedu.govt.nz